The Minister stated that “Through the work of the BEDC, as the GEW host organisation, in partnership with the Department of ICT Policy & Innovation and the Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda, GEW has grown significantly.  In 2008, the host committee organised 6 events with 4 partners, and roughly 100 participants.  Last year there were over 40 events, 30 partners, 5000 participants, and over 35,000 people reached.   This is a magnanimous feat for this small Island of Bermuda and shows what partnering to deliver on a common objective can achieve. This year the Host Committee has added some exciting new events which I encourage you all to participate in.”

At the proclamation event, the public was treated to an opening from the Town Crier and a welcome from Mayor Charles Gosling.  Joining the Mayor and Minister Simmons on the stage were other dignitaries and sponsors, including Camille Hayley, representing the US Consul General’s Office; Pat Phillip-Fairn, Chief Product & Experiences Officer for the BTA, Dr. Marisa Stones, Director of the Department of ICT Policy & Innovation; Korrin Lightbourne, Marketing & Community Outreach Coordinator for the Chamber of Commerce; Joe Mahoney, Executive Director of the Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda and Linda Cook, entrepreneur and owner of Little Longtails.  Those seated represented the partnership that has been formed across key organizations in an effort to support and encourage entrepreneurship.

On the heels of the Proclamation, Minister Simmons attended the GEW Launch and Biz Camp award reception in the Chairman’s Suite at Chubb to launch the Bermudian activities of GEW and award the students that participated in the Biz Camp.  The Minister welcomed parents and sponsors to the event stating “Today we also recognize the achievement of some of our budding entrepreneurs through the Biz Camp programme.  This programme run by GEW host committee member, Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda and sponsored by GEW Host Committee Member, the Department of ICT Policy & Innovation is one that the BEDC has participated in for years.  The team at BEDC supports Biz Camp by presenting to the students and judging the pitches.  Last year several of the Biz Camp participants went on to participate in the BEDC sponsored Rocket Pitch Competition.  This natural progression is exactly what this Government wants to encourage.  To those young people being recognized today, I say congratulations and continue to pursue your dreams.  You represent our future leaders and we are proud of your accomplishments thus far.”

Following the Minister’s welcome remarks, Jamillah Lodge, Information Education & Communications Officer for BEDC and GEW Project Manager, reviewed the many activities and events that were planned for the month of November and focused on some of the signature events including the Rocket Pitch Competition and the Tech Awards which too are celebrating a 10 year anniversary along with GEW.  Mrs. Lodge shared that “On the 10 year anniversary of Bermuda’s participation in GEW the BEDC will be hosting its first annual Small Business Awards and encouraged everyone to nominate their favorite small businesses and attend the Awards to take place at Elbow Beach Hotel on Sunday, November 12, 2017.”

The event then turned to the first official activity for GEW 2017, the Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative’s Prizegiving for their 2017 BizCamps. Joe Mahoney, Executive Director of YEI and GEW Host Committee Member was joined by Minister Simmons in presenting certificates to the teenagers who completed the intensive 7-day program held this past July and over the October break. During BizCamp students learned about opportunity recognition, pricing, marketing and many other aspects of running a company and developed their own business idea. The audience was delighted to hear BizPlan presentations from 2 of the participants, Toriah Smith, with Imagine Me Academy a Special Education tutoring service and Shalom-Yasha Cannonier, a retail and manufacturing business specializing in prosthetics and exoskeletons for military and recreational purposes. 

Mr. Mahoney remarked that “seeing the students develop their plans over the camp was extremely fulfilling and makes me proud.  The course is extremely intensive and all of the participants should be commended for seeing the Biz camp through to the end.” Mr. Mahoney closed the event by thanking the sponsors of GEW and Biz Camp specifically acknowledging Chubb for sponsoring use of their space.

Go to www.gew.bm for further information on GEW Bermuda or to register for an event. Specific information on the activities may also be found at www.bedc.bm. Also check out the GEWBermuda Facebook page.

 

About Global Entrepreneurship Week

During one week in November the world spotlights how young people's ideas can contribute to global economic development.   GEW Global, which started in 2008 with the Kauffman Foundation and the UK’s Make your Mark organization, has grown to include Host Committees in over 160 countries.  With the help of governments and non-government organizations, Host Countries coordinate events ranging from invention competitions to local entrepreneurship summits designed to stimulate creative solutions, jumpstart innovation and celebrate the entrepreneurial spirit, especially among young people. 

The Bermuda Host Committee is made up of the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda (registered charity no. 616),  and the Department of ICT Policy & Innovation. Formed in 2008 the Bermuda Host Committee has grown to include a working committee made up of new and seasoned entrepreneurs and representatives from the public and private sector all acting with the common goal of inspiring the new generation of entrepreneurs and creative thinkers.

Various 2017 GEW Events and Activities

Events:

    • BYB – Branding Your Business Seminar – Wed, Nov 1st, 6:00pm – 8:00pm – This seminar provided entrepreneurs with tips and best practices to effectively brand a business, market the business and provide customer service.
    • GEW Proclamation Thurs, Nov 2nd – 12:00 – 2:00pm.  On the steps of City Hall the Minister of Economic Development & Tourism will proclaim the month of November as Entrepreneurship Month and acknowledge 10 years of the global GEW movement.  We will also have entertainment and activities during the afternoon for the public and invited guests to celebrate entrepreneurship. 
    • GEW Launch/Biz Camp Awards – Thurs., Nov 2nd 3:30 pm – 5:30pm. GEW Bermuda will be officially launched with the prize giving ceremony for the 2017 Department of ICT Policy & Innovation sponsored Biz Camp, facilitated by Joe Mahoney, Executive Director of Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda (YEI).  Biz Camp is a summer camp programme, for students between the ages of 13 and 18, to help them to understand the process associated with starting a business.
    • Networking Event -Bowling & Business Cards – Nov 10th 5:30pm – 8:30pm – A series of fun networking events to get entrepreneurs mingling in a fun environment. We anticipate hosting an event every Friday evening starting on Nov.10th – 24th
    • Small Business Awards – Sun., Nov 12th – 5:00pm – 11:00pm

      These awards will be a celebration of small business owners and local entrepreneurs.  Awards will be given out for: Entrepreneur of the Year, New Business of the Year, Most Enterprising Young Entrepreneur, BEDC Client of the Year, People’s Choice.

    • Entrepreneurship Education Awards – Tues., Nov 14th, 2017 6:00pm – 9:00pm  - This is an annual event that celebrates graduates that participate in the BEDC coordinated entrepreneurship training throughout the year.  Graduates are presented with their certificates and enjoy an evening of networking.  In addition to presentations from the BEDC Chairman and Executive Director in 2016 we anticipate having an international guest speaker, to be the lead speaker for the evening. 
    • Rocket Pitch Competition: - Thurs., Nov 16th – 5:30 – 9:00pm - This annual GEW Event has become a staple of GEW Bermuda. Since 2008, over 100 potential entrepreneurs have entered into the competition. As a result, 25 new businesses have been launched so far.  Bermudians seeking to launch a new venture deliver a seven-minute business pitch on their creative business idea in an attempt to win a comprehensive start-up package of cash and services.  The business ideas range from new tourism/hospitality products, Pitch Pink to technology ideas, Pitch Tech, concepts specifically tailored for a local Bermuda business, Pitch Town and in 2016 we launched the Pitch Green category that focuses on the green industry.  Winners in this category are automatically entered into to global Future Agro Challenge. This year we have added the Youth Pitch category for students up to age 18.
    • Women in Entrepreneurship Day – Friday, Nov 17th 

      Through the US Consulate General’s Office’s IIP Speakers Programme we will seek to bring in an entrepreneur in celebration of Women in Entrepreneurship on Friday, Nov. 17 with a breakfast workshop.  Thereafter we look forward to hosting a select few women at the Consul General’s residence for an intimate luncheon. Invitees to the luncheon will include W.O.M.B awards finalists.

  • Breakfast Seminar “Can You have it All” – Featuring international special guest, Monica Dodi – 8:30 – 11:00am
  • Luncheon with US Consulate General  – 12:30 – 2:30pm
    • TechAwards Cocktail Reception: -  Tuesday, Nov. 21st  5:00pm – 7:00pm

TechAwards started as the Technology Innovation Awards in 2006 and was successfully amalgamated with GEW in 2013, only to become a star event during the week. This year we will celebrate 10 years of offering the TechAwards locally.  TechAwards aims to expand the reach and knowledge of technology in Bermuda. It does so by heavily involving the public who is asked to nominate Bermudian innovators who should be applauded for a development that enhances our ability to achieve better results, whether individually or as a community.

    • Do What I Say, Not What I Did – Wed., Nov 22nd - 12:30pm – 1:30pm -Entrepreneurs share their stories and provide best practices for starting an online business

For the full list of all GEW events, log on to www.gew.bm

About BEDC

Bermuda Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) is Bermuda’s premier source of free confidential business advice for entrepreneurs.  The mission is to serve Bermuda’s local business community with the highest degree of professionalism by providing, authoritative business advice; counsel and loan guarantee support. Bermuda Business Starts Here!  For more information visit www.bedc.bm.

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