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Budding entrepreneurs honoured

Resource type: News

The Royal Gazette (Bermuda) |

By Alex Wright Bermuda’s budding young business people took centre stage at the 2008 Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda (YEIB) BizCamp Prize Giving ceremony. A total of 15 Bermudian entrepreneurs whose business plans were judged the best of the 2008 BizCamps presented their projects at the event held at XL House yesterday. Among the 15, including five winners from each of the three weeks, were Chelsea Warren, Priya Ratteray, Elizabeth Blankendal, Taryn Swainson, Marquis Burgess, Romario Foote, Jazmyn Williams, Timera Place, Vinagrace Parayaoan, Ellia Wilson-Robinson, Whitney Riley, Aaron Furbert, Jordan Richardson, Juliana Franco, D’chelle Allen, Lezlie Bailey and Kayl Christopher. The top three were awarded prizes from CellularOne and The iStore. BizCamp uses experiential learning to teach business and economics, while having fun, with students being given the chance to experience an innovative business curriculum that focuses on this year’s theme of entrepreneurship, technology and e-commerce. As they learned from business experts how a company is created, funded and run, students had the opportunity to write their own business plan, enabling them to learn about marketing and advertising, e-commerce, cost and pricing, finance, insurance and business etiquette during the week-long programme. Jordan Richardson, 14, from Sandys, who attends Sandys Middle School, came up with a business plan to market and sell Kangen Water, a water purification system, which proved so successful he is now planning to pitch it to the US and Japanese markets when he flies to New York next month. “My strategy was basically to do as much advertising as possible – to market the stuff and make people want to buy it,” he said. “Basically I want to be an entrepreneur and an actuary when I get older.” Fourteen-year-old Jazmyn Williams, of Southampton, drew up a plan for Hope Personal Shopping Unique, a service which helps run errands such as grocery shopping for single parents, elderly or disabled people. She now has designs on starting her own bridal dress shop or hair salon. “It was a lot of work – basically I had to do some advertising and I decided to spend my money on doing so in The Royal Gazette and on a radio commercial, and I think for a year I will get 367 customers.” The BizCamps were run by Joe Mahoney, director of YEIB, assisted by Kristin White, Michelle Morfitt, and Brent Guntal, alongside the Ministry of Energy, Telecommunications and e-Commerce, and funded by the Bank of Bermuda Foundation, XL Foundation, Deloitte, Catlin Bermuda, PartnerRe, Bank of Butterfield, the Ministry and other local businesses. Mr. Mahoney said: “The Bermudians really get it, they understand entrepreneurship and they all know somebody personally who is an entrepreneur.” Bank of Bermuda Foundation spokesperson David Lang said: “The Foundation takes a deep interest in the development of Bermuda’s young people, who will be the drivers of Bermuda’s success in the years to come. The BizCamps are a great way to give practical encouragement to future Bermudian entrepreneurs and we are very proud to be able to support them.” YEIB was set up in April 2002 and is a registered Bermudian charity and puts on the BizCamps for 13 to 18-year-olds, granting certificates to 600 youngsters to date. Its curriculum was created by The National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship, and it enlists volunteer business professionals as guest speakers, BizCoaches, and BizPlan Judges.

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Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative of Bermuda