Letter: Go-invest, Business Ministry should be promoting IDB’s entrepreneur startup programme

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Dear Editor:

On several occasions I have written about the possibilities which exist for the creative industries in Guyana and the rest of CARICOM. The creative industries are well suited for young entrepreneurs involved in digital design, fashion, music and craft production. The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) is offering some assistance through a joint programme with Miami Dade College borsch entrepreneurs from the region and Miami.
I am not aware that this information has been shared in Guyana so I ask that you publish this as soon as possible since the deadline for submission of projects is fast approaching. These are the kinds of opportunities that Go-Invest and the Ministry of Business should be promoting locally. I hope they have been doing so and it is me who is not up to date.

Miami Dade College (MDC) in partnership with the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) is launching an open call to select the most innovative startups in the creative and cultural industries – what the IDB refers to as the Orange Economy – from Latin America, the Caribbean, and South Florida.

The deadline to apply is  Thursday, May 4, at 5:59 p.m.

Demand Solutions Miami will take place at MDC’s Wolfson Campus, in downtown Miami this fall where the 12 best startups from Latin America and the Caribbean and the five most innovative startups from Greater Miami will be presented.

Participating ventures need to have an innovative product or solution to improve lives in the following categories:

DESIGN WITH SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY: urban, interior and industrial design. Graphic arts, illustration and toys. Wearable technology, accessibility and cultural identity expression. Co-creation between craftsmen and designers.

SUSTAINABLE FASHION: intelligent clothes, organic clothes, and accessories.

MULTIMEDIA TO SAVE THE WORLD: video games, support media for digital content, virtual reality, 3D printing and interactive audiovisual content.

GASTRONOMY AS AN AGENT OF TRANSFORMATION: recovery of ancestral and native recipes. Fusion cuisine, environmentally minded restaurants and chefs.

STEREOTYPE-FREE MUSIC: cultural and ancestral preservation. Music as an education and language preservation tool.

This open call will award prizes to startups that have an innovative product or solution (not just an idea) that has already been launched, or a minimum viable product (MVP) with existing users.

Participating entrepreneurs must be over 18 years of age and be either founders or cofounders of startups with a minimum of one year and maximum of three years of operation and implementation/commercialization of their product or service.

One of the founders or cofounders of each of the selected startups will have the chance to present his or her solution before a jury of industry specialists and potential investors during the Demand Solutions Miami in Oct. 2017.

Yours sincerely,
Wesley Kirton

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