Thousands to benefit from expansion in technology training for Jamaica

Friday, June 14, 2019

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Paul Ahlstrom, founder of Alta Global Ventures, has announced a partnership with the Bottega School to train some 1,000 full stack engineers in Jamaica. Ahlstrom made the announcement during his keynote speech at the DBJ Investment Conference in Kingston this week.

In addition to the full stack engineers, Bottega — which is both a software company and an accredited school -- will also train 5,000 students in computer science basics in a programme called Coding Foundations.

“Bottega's expansion into Jamaica couldn't come at a better time,” said Audrey Richards, coordinator of the Jamaica Venture Capital Programme. “The fundamentals are in place for Jamaica to dramatically grow the tech ecosystem.”

The partnership with Bottega accelerates the technology growth of the country. It is also seeking additional support from local private and government institutions.

“Anyone who has the initiative to learn how to code in Jamaica, now has the opportunity,” said Fili Ledezma, Bottega president.

Bottega will open the Jamaica office by Sept. 1, 2019, which will act as a training facility for the first of many software engineers, beginning with 5,000 Coding Foundations scholarships. At least 1,000 of these students will be advanced into the Full Stack Engineer programme. The selection will be based on their results, grit and ambition to gain the in-demand skill sets Bottega offers.

The tuition value of this training exceeds US$10 million.

Graduates of the engineering programme commit a small percentage of their future technology income for three years to replenish the “pay it forward” education fund to make this opportunity available to additional Jamaican citizens.

Using its proprietary Learning Management System devCamp.com, Bottega is able to train students in such a way that their graduates are “production ready” to design and develop modern software applications and have the ability to begin mentoring others.

Bottega strives to create opportunity for those who have the ambition to turn their dreams into a reality.

“I don't look at your background (positive or negative), rather, I care about your passion, determination and hunger,” Ledezma declared.

In addition to being the founder and managing director of Alta Global Ventures, Ahlstrom is the author of the book Nail It, Then Scale It. He is an experienced investor and fund manager with strong experience in business development, who is skilled in mergers & acquisitions, start-ups, leadership, business modeling and seed capital. Ahlstrom is widely regarded as a venture investment pioneer in Latin America and the Caribbean.

His company, Alta Global Ventures, is a global venture capital fund scaling superior business models worldwide. It also supports seed, venture and growth stage companies across the Americas

“Our mission is to support passionate entrepreneurs who are building global companies while improving lives in their local communities,” Ahlstrom said. “The partnership with Bottega supports this mission as it increases the quality and quantity of engineers in the markets that we serve.”

“Increasing the number of quality skilled engineers will take Jamaica's technology ecosystem to the next level,” he continued.

Bottega CEO, Eric Wold, expressed his enthusiasm for the progressive partnership.

“We are thrilled to find kindred spirits in Paul Ahlstrom, the Alta Global team and critical local partners in Jamaica - people with talent and vision who want to help us make the world a better place through high-impact models that scale,” he said.

Milverton Reynolds, managing director of Development Bank of Jamaica also shared similar sentiments.

“The support from Jamaica on this project has been overwhelmingly positive as Jamaica has made a commitment to invest in themselves,” the managing director emphasised.


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