UWI Open Campus, Compete Caribbean launching regional business plan competition

THE University of the West Indies (The UWI) Open Campus and Compete Caribbean are collaborating on a regional business plan competition targeting entrepreneurs who currently operate or wish to operate within the community-based tourism (CBT) industry. Entrepreneurs from Compete Caribbean member countries — Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and Suriname are eligible to participate.

The competition is designed to identify entrepreneurs in the sector, and encourage the development of innovative, community-driven ideas with potential for expansion and increase community-based enterprises.

The competition, which opens on January 25 and closes on March 11, will be executed virtually. Participants will be required to register at bit.ly/3KhjuM0, upload their business plan to an online space and deliver a five-minute pitch to a panel of judges.

To support entrepreneurs in entering and preparing for the competition, two webinars will be convened as follows:

•Competition launch & how to write a business plan for community based tourism – Tuesday, January 25 at 10:00 am AST.

•Business pitch workshop – Tuesday, February 8 at 10:00 am AST.

The webinars will also facilitate the sharing of targeted consumer research that will assist entrepreneurs in pricing their goods and services.

Prizes will be awarded to participants, with the first prize of USD$2,500 in technical support.

CBT is a collaborative approach to tourism in which community members exercise control by actively participating in the appraisal, development, management, and/or ownership (whole or in part) of enterprises. The business typically provides net socio-economic benefits to community members, conserve natural and cultural resources, and add value to the experiences of local and international visitors. This includes both community-based tourism activities as well as goods and services provided to the tourism industry by one or more members of the community.

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