Sun | Aug 19, 2018

Innovators winner elated

Published:Thursday | November 6, 2014 | 12:00 AMKeisha Hill
Contributed Photo Dionne Waugh, winner of The Innovators $250,000 Award for Small Businesses

After an exciting season of 'The Innovators' came to a close recently, it was announced that Dionne Waugh of Bridal Dreams Jamaica is the quarter-million-dollar prize winner from the Jamaica National Small Business Loans.

"I was elated and humbled when I won the grand prize. I have never been awarded a prize of this magnitude before. Winning was something I prayed about and imagined I could win. I know I have been working hard and it has been a blessing to be recognised for putting in the work," Waugh said.

Waugh's business was at a crossroads when she decided to go on 'The Innovators' to seek help in reformatting her business to make it profitable. "The decision to participate in the fourth season of 'The Innovators' was the all-important turning point in the business model of Dream World Events. Through the advice of Yaneek Page and Gary Matalon, we decided to streamline our business processes and introduce Bridal Dreams Jamaica," Waugh said.

Waugh plans to use the money to improve the company's internal processes as well as to purchase additional supplies for the business. "These funds will definitely be used to execute more spectacular events and weddings," Waugh told The Gleaner.

"Gary and I watched Waugh grow and progress from the filming of the show until now, and while all the assignments worked hard she really deserved to have won this prize," said Yaneek Page, host and executive producer of The Innovators. "The purpose of this award is to assist with well-needed financial support for promising small business owners who need

support," Page added.

Throughout the season, Jamaica National Small Business Loans showed their support and commitment to nation building through the

development of entrepreneurs and small businesses. Their workshop with the assignments prior to the start of Season Four had local businessman Douglas Lindo providing them with guidance and training.

This years' cohort of assignments included a wide array of businesses ranging from rabbit farming, a taxi company, food service, and events management, among others, all of which were provided support from The Innovators team and those at Jamaica National Small Business Loans and the Jamaica Yellow Pages.