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Caribbean Tech Roundup



PitchIT Caribbean, under the remit of the Caribbean Mobile Innovation Project (CMIP), is intended to support growth-oriented mobile app businesses in the Caribbean. The programme is designed to strengthen the Caribbean mobile innovation ecosystem. And enable sustainable and competitive mobile enterprises to grow through activities that will target early stage investors and guide them to market readiness. The aim is to create a regional pool of high-growth potential mobile start-ups, with the capacity to release their apps to the market and raise additional capital to grow.


In August PitchIT Caribbean invited regional Tech entrepreneurs to participate in the Slush Global Impact Accelerator which will be held between November 22nd to December 2nd. Caribbean hopefuls for Slush Global Impact Accelerator 2017, were put through their paces at the PitchIT Caribbean’s qualifying event. The event received more than 40 entries, from which ten were shortlisted to pitch. The top ten came from Antigua & Barbuda, Trinidad & Tobago, and Jamaica. On the 6th September, nine of the impact start-ups pitched virtually, with one team submitting a pre-recorded submission.

Following a spirited and robust judging session, the following three companies emerged as the top three:

Braata (Brawta) a local artisan gift box subscription service https://braatabox.com/

Get First Alert, an app that provides users with medical and other emergency services based information http://www.getfirstalert.com, and

Link Your Purpose, a virtual career mentor-ship service http://www.linkyourpurpose.com/


These three companies were submitted for evaluation by the Slush team to determine which one of them will go on to represent the Caribbean in Helsinki in November. We will bring news of the lucky winner in a later briefing.


C&W Communications provides update on Hurricane Irma damage

In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, which left a trail of destruction across the Caribbean and parts of the US. C&W Communications, operator of the retail brand Flow, provided an update on the impact to its people, markets, and operations. As the largest full service communications operator in the region, C&W saw impacts across the region including in the islands of Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, The Bahamas, British Virgin Islands (BVI), Turks & Caicos Islands, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico. US-based employees in Florida were also affected by the storm.

“Clearly Irma was an historic event, and we have suffered some damage to both fixed and mobile networks in our markets that bore the full force of the storm.” said John Reid, C&W’s CEO. He went on to state that, “First and foremost, our initial assessment indicates that our people are fully accounted for in the affected countries.” Reid continued, “I’m pleased to report that our mobile networks in Antigua and Anguilla are back up to pre-Irma usage levels. There was, however, significant impact to our systems and services in Antigua and Barbuda, the British Virgin Islands and the Turks & Caicos Islands.”

C&W’s attention is now wholly focused on rapidly restoring services to impacted customers across the region. Teams across the region are working around the clock to return services to normal. The Company has also established a Restoration Hub in Antigua, where technicians from across the C&W Group – Jamaica, Barbados, and Panama – as well as its parent Company Liberty Global will be dedicated to getting islands back online. The company also extended free credit across affected markets, enabling pre-pay mobile customers to get in contact with loved ones on their island or abroad without worrying about charges.


Prospering in the Technological Era is Focus of Barbados’ International Business Week 2017

The Barbados International Business and Financial Services (IB&FS) sector will again be in the spotlight during this year’s International Business Week, which runs from October 15th to 21st. Now in its ninth year, the week of activities was conceptualised to raise public awareness of the importance of the international business sector to the country and its contribution to the island’s growth and development.

The Barbados International Business Association (BIBA), in collaboration with Invest Barbados and other strategic partners, have planned several informative and engaging activities and events, including the flagship event of this week – a two-day conference to be held on October 19th and 20th.

This year’s conference, theme is ‘Prospering in the Technological Era -Innovate, Integrate, Motivate’, and provides a unique opportunity for delegates to gain an understanding of current issues affecting the international business and financial service sector and the global trends impacting its development.

This year’s topics include: The Future of Work: Technology and Humanity; Artificial Intelligence – Is it bad for business?; Technology Transforming Lifestyles; Shifting Landscapes: The Gender Differential; Developed Market Debt is Rising – What are the Global Implications?; and Renewable Energy and Business.


San Pedro High Is the First School To Receive New DigiNet Fiber Optic Internet

San Pedro High School and Belize Telemedia (BTL) celebrated the installation of DigiNet at the school, the fastest internet service in the country. San Pedro High is the first school on Ambergris Caye to have access to the DigiNet service as part of BTL’s Internet to Schools Programme. DigiNet will boost the school’s internet speed from 8Mbps to 60Mbps, making internet more reliable to the faculty and student body.

BTL and Huawei Marine, have successfully installed fiber optic submarine cables between Belize mainland and San Pedro, allowing Ambergris Caye to be the first location in the country to experience faster fiber optic internet service.

BTL CEO, Rochus Schreiber, highlighted the importance of internet and technology and how young Belizeans are taking advantage of it to create new careers for themselves.