News Release: HAMILTON, Bermuda – On Tuesday, April 6th, 2021 the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) began its 4th cohort of the Enterprise Bermuda Incubator Program (EBI). This free incubator program, started by the BEDC in February of 2018, is a twelve-month incubation program to support local entrepreneurs and the development of their businesses.
The 4th Cohort will see nine entrepreneurs working diligently to launch, develop and further grow their businesses. The entrepreneurs in the program this year are:
- Indira Swan who will be working to launch her business idea, The Cool Mom Club; a clothing brand, mom blog and playgroup for millennial moms of diverse backgrounds.
- Ras Selassie, the owner of Natural Afrikan BDA, will be working toward bringing his products to market. Natural Afrikan BDA is a local manufacturing, packaging & distribution company using locally sourced, sustainable supply chains that will help decrease food waste and increase food security.
- Keanne Bean will be introducing her business, Yummy Yard; an edible landscaping company that educates people on growing their own food and encourages co-working and embracing gardening.
- Caitlyn Eve & Sionna Barton are the owners of J.A.G. Athletics; a business that provides a series of programs that are designed to teach youth & adults of all ages the fundamentals of any or all of our combined athletic sports.
- Evan Heyliger aims to launch his business, Loquat Learning; a business that provides supplemental education for students between 7 and 17 years old in a variety of subjects and life skills.
- Gavin Carter of Gavin’s Butter will be working on growing his existing gourmet flavored butter business in hopes of scaling both locally and internationally.
- Juanae Simmons will be working to launch her business idea, iWashBDA; a laundry-based business providing pickup, sorting, washing, drying, folding and ironing services.
- Rickai Edwards, owner of Cedar Beam Advancements, aims to grow his collection of Bermuda based websites that provide information that can be conveniently found online directly or from Google search results.
The Enterprise Bermuda Incubator is focused on walking participants through an in-depth twelve- month development process, to ensure that the entrepreneurs get beyond the idea stage and start to bring their businesses to fruition. During the program the applicants will receive assistance with analyzing and refining their business idea, so they can best determine if it will work in – and beyond – the Bermuda market.
Participants are provided with complimentary access to BEDC’s educational courses and programmes; free and subsidized office space; an assigned Business Development Officer and personalized mentoring with industry experts. In addition, they will receive access to pro-bono or subsidized services in areas such as marketing, accounting, legal support, web development and more.
“The Enterprise Bermuda Incubator has been inspiring. I have enjoyed working alongside my colleagues to assist these entrepreneurs grow their businesses,” says Jamillah Lodge, Director of Communication & Development at BEDC. “Since the commencement of the programme, twenty-two new businesses have been launched and 65+ jobs created as a result.”
Marcelle Lawrence, past EBI Participant and owner of Eco Island Travel said: “Participating in the EBI connected me to the invaluable resources offered by BEDC. From a wealth of courses, to connecting with other budding entrepreneurs, the expertise of the BEDC officers and quality office space and facilities, the EBI was a great place to test and launch my business ideas!”
BEDC Executive Director Erica Smith, added: “The BEDC enthusiastically welcomes the new cohort of the EBI and is looking forward to assisting the new set of entrepreneurs. “It is always great to see what a new group of entrepreneurs will achieve during their time in the program.
“We are really encouraged to see that the entrepreneurial spirit has not been broken amid the pandemic, but instead renewed. The BEDC team will be here to support them and I cannot wait to see how their businesses blossom during their 12-month stay in the incubator.”