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Helping Caribbean Companies Innovate Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund

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I.

Compete Caribbean

Compete Caribbean is a private sector development program that provides technical assistance grants and investment funding to support productive development policies, business climate reforms, clustering initiatives and Small and Medium Size Enterprise (SME) development activities in the Caribbean region. The program, jointly funded by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the United Kingdom Department of International Development (DFID) and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), supports projects in 15 Caribbean countries. The program’s estimated value is US$40.0 million, of which DFID and CIDA contributed US$32.55 million.

Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund Helping Caribbean Companies Innovate

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II. EICF Direct Firm Support

Compete Caribbean’s Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund (EICF) provides grants to Caribbean registered firms to implement innovative projects. EICF supports projects which enable firms to increase productivity, exports, employment, economic diversification and growth. EICF awards matching grants between US$ 100,000 to US$ 500,000 through an open, competitive, and transparent process. The application process includes two stages. The first stage requires firms to submit a brief Project Concept Note (PCN). The second stage requires pre-qualified firms to submit an Innovative Business Project (IBP). Selections are made based on the recommendations of an independent investment panel comprised of successful Caribbean business men and women In this first call for proposals, Compete Caribbean challenges firms to establish new and innovative business models that increase exports and create rewarding jobs for Caribbean men and women.

Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund Helping Caribbean Companies Innovate

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III. EICF - Direct Firm Support FAQs

Who can apply? This Fund is targeted at firms with innovative ideas and the capacity to try them out. These firms must have resources available to match the grant amount they request. Firms can group together as a partnership (along a supply chain for example) and can include ‘not for profit’ organisations and international firms. The project must take place in the Caribbean and be led by a company registered in a CARIFORUM* country. *Antigua & Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, the Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent & the Grenadines, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Suriname, and Trinidad & Tobago

Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund Helping Caribbean Companies Innovate

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III. EICF - Direct Firm Support FAQs

What are the eligibility criteria? •

The project must demonstrate how it will develop either a new export market for an existing product/service or a new export product/ service from CARIFORUM countries.

The project must have the potential to create rewarding jobs for Caribbean men and women.

A ‘’for-profit’’ firm registered in a CARIFORUM country must lead the project.

Partnerships formed to implement a project may include non CARIFORUM country firms.

Firms must have the resources available to cover at least 50% of the project cost.

The firm should show that commercial finance is not available/ justifiable for the project because of the innovation and associated risk level.

The grant requested must be in the range of $100,000 to $500,000 USD (This means the minimum project size is $200,000 USD – there is no maximum project size).

EICF funded projects must be completed within two years of project start.

What sort of projects will be funded?

The Fund is open to a broad range of projects and sectors. What is important is that the project is innovative and meets the challenge:

To establish new and innovative business models that increase exports and create rewarding jobs for Caribbean men and women

Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund Helping Caribbean Companies Innovate

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III. EICF - Direct Firm Support FAQs

How can my company apply? The first step is to register online. You will receive guidelines on how to submit your project concept note. The EICF team will also be available to offer advice. These PCNs are screened by an independent investment panel and the best are invited to submit an Innovative Business Project (IBP). In the second step, selected firms with selected project develop an IBP by a set deadline and again will receive guidance on what is required. In addition, Compete Caribbean may cover a portion of the costs of any technical assistance required to complete the project proposal. The independent investment panel recommends which projects should receive grants. If you have a business idea and are interested in responding to this challenge then register now at www.competecaribbean.org/EICF

Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund Helping Caribbean Companies Innovate

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III. EICF - Direct Firm Support FAQs

Why Now? The Caribbean private sector is facing a challenging and changing environment. With the benefits of free trade now established, traditional special trading arrangements are being swept away and replaced with new agreements, such as the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the European Union. This means the region’s businesses must adapt to this new environment. Success now depends on international competitiveness and the ability to respond quickly to changes in the market place. Compete Caribbean aims to enable the private sector to succeed by supporting the development of policies and strategies, creating the right business environment and helping Companies develop new markets and approaches.

Enterprise Innovation Challenge Fund Helping Caribbean Companies Innovate

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For more information, contact

Compete Caribbean

Inter-American Development Bank Mervue House, Maine Gardens Christ Church, BB14047. Barbados. Phone: + 1 246 227 8500 • Fax: + 1 246 429 8869 Email: dfscompetecaribbean@iadb.org

www.competecaribbean.org

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compete caribbean