Jamaica to host regional junior entrepreneurship competition
Jamaica has been selected to host the seventh Annual Junior Achievement (JA) Americas Company of the Year (COY) Competition from December 3-6, at the Hilton Rose Hall in Montego Bay, St James.
Twenty youth entrepreneurial teams from 15 countries will be competing in several rounds of judging as they vie for the 2015 COY award.
This was announced recently by Junior Achievement Jamaica (JAJ), who won the bid to host the event. Alphie Mullings-Aiken, president of JAJ, said that this is the first time that the event is being hosted in the English-speaking Caribbean.
"We will have participants from Latin America, the Caribbean and Canada. This is a very special occasion for JAJ and the nation as the event is normally hosted in Latin America, and this is the first time that a Caribbean nation will be hosting the competition," Mullings-Aiken said.
The finalists were determined by judges who assessed scores of company reports and business plans from across 30 countries in the JA Americas Region. All the entrants participated in the JA Company Programme in their respective territories, where they developed and ran businesses in their schools and communities during the 2014-2015 academic year. These businesses ranged from retail to the creation of new products and services for sale, rental or hire.
Two Jamaican companies are among the finalists this year, SIVA from St Jago High School and Teen Labour Enterprise (TLE) from Rusea's High School. SIVA manufactured book covers, vases, picture frames and mirror holders made from fudge sticks, while TLE made food and beverages from breadfruit.
The winner will be determined after four rounds of judging at the COY Competition.
"We are excited that the region is able to host another COY, as we believe that youth entrepreneurship is fundamental to regional growth and development. We are very grateful to FedEx and Delta, who have come on board as regional sponsors, and First Global Bank, Fontana Pharmacy and Wisynco, who have signed on as local sponsors for the event," Mullings-Aiken said.