The Outlook - July 2019

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You Are Reading Vol. 09 Issue. 1 July, 2019

Small Business

WE ARE ON Like our page!

Building Networks; Creating Wealth

In This Issue:

8 Steps to Build an Internationally Recognisable Brand

- 8 Steps to Build an Internationally Recognisable Brand - Leveraging the Participation of SMEs in International Trade - Success in Accounting for Small Business Level 3 NVQ - Dr. Biz - Biggest Mistakes Made by Small Business Owners

& much more... Small business owners persistently face the dilemma of limited access to newer and larger markets to expand their business operations and increase their profitability. However, in this technologically advanced era, driven by social media platforms on the internet, businesses now have an even greater opportunity to gain world-wide recognition and demand. The journey towards obtaining global accreditation not only takes time and meticulous effort, but requires a true understanding of the company’s long-term objectives for success. In light of this, the first step towards developing an internationally recognisable brand would be to create or review your business model and answer the following questions – What do you offer to your target market? Would your good or service be desirable to similar markets across the globe? How will your products be delivered to consumers living abroad? To answer these questions effectively, thorough market research must be conducted and analysed. Once this has been completed, business owners must get to know their competitors. This requires an in-depth study of the companies which offer similar value propositions to the public. In doing so, you will detect what must be changed or altered in your business model to grant you a competitive advantage. The third step would therefore be to perfect your product or service based on the conclusions drawn from the business analysis and competitor-study. You must be willing to provide irresistible value and quality to your prospective market and be determined to exceed consumer expectations to separate yourself from your competitors. Focus on

building and maintaining a reputation of credibility and reliability. Fourthly, in order to become a globally recognised brand, you must have a brand – manufacturing a product or providing a service is not sufficient! Business owners must give thought to what the image and story line of their business will be to help them create a memorable presence in the market. Branding necessities include a professional logo, distinct corporate colours and a relatable corporate persona. The latter speaks to what customers feel when they think about your company’s brand. What do they associate the company with other than good products or services? Positive corporate personas can be achieved by inter alia sponsoring various social events or donating to causes and charities which are important to your community. The concept of a corporate persona becomes very important for the fifth step, that is, to become easily accessible to the public and to stay connected and relevant. This involves creating social media pages for your business and developing an e-commerce website to facilitate convenient shopping of your goods and services. It is imperative to keep with the times and if you wish to access larger markets, there is none larger than the world, which is available online. Staying consistently connected and relevant also involves frequently posting online and engaging followers in relevant discussions. Being vocal about pertinent issues affecting your industry, market or region can also remind consumers of your brand’s existence and loyalty to them. The goal is to be present at all times! The sixth step involves making investments in the technological and marketing aspects of

your business. Small business owners must ensure that they keep up-to-date with the latest technology and software needed to provide consumers with the highest quality products. Additionally, engaging in online marketing campaigns and boosting content posts to reach wider audiences can be a worthy investment that brings satisfactory returns. The next step relates to customer service. Your business and brand is only as good as the people who manage and work for it. It is therefore crucial that the interactions between the associates of your company and potential or returning customers remain at a high standard. Focusing on providing top class service is always the wisest move. This is because satisfied customers will provide you with free marketing assistance through referrals and online testimonies which further increase your brand’s reach.

MSMEs have an enormous and largely untapped market staring them in the face every day – it’s called ‘the world’. However, if they don’t get some help to simplify the complexities of trading across borders, they will become just another statistic.

Excerpt from the article ‘Go Big or Go Home: Getting Small Business to Think Large’ by Philippe Gilbert in the International Trade Forum 2019 Issue 1 by the International Trade Centre

Finally, find an expert! Don’t be afraid to seek expert advice in areas that you are not au fait with. Forming alliances with other companies who have already expanded their brand’s reach may help to propel your Continued on the next page

8 Steps to Build an Internationally Recognisable Brand cont’d... business forward in numerous ways. For instance, teaming up with global brands can aid you in achieving much needed brand exposure in markets already accessed by the partnering company. The additional help may also prove useful when it comes to

completing the necessary forms for funding or satisfying export regulations. Additionally, companies will benefit from the combination of technological and manufacturing resources experienced in a partnership by being able to meet high consumer demands.

This will inevitably help you to build a brand worthy of international recognition through ensuring that your business is fully prepared for high volume operations.

Leveraging the Participation of SMEs in International Trade The Small Business Association, in its effort to facilitate the growth of the local micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) sector, recently hosted a regional workshop in collaboration with the Caribbean Export Development Agency, with funding provided by the European Union, on the theme “Leveraging the CARIFORUM-EU Economic Partnership Agreement.”

Minister in the Ministry of Foreign Trade, the Hon. Sandra Husbands, MP, addressing participants at the Regional Workshop

The workshop, which was attended by over 50 local and regional participants, sought to encourage small business owners to think bigger and addressed the opportunities that the CARIFORUM-European Union EPA offered to the MSME sector.

main objective of the regional workshop was to educate small business owners on the possibility of export trade. Another objective of the workshop was to address those inhibiting factors that affect the maximisation of MSMEs in global trade, particularly the CARIFORUM-EU EPA. The two-day event focused on providing the tools needed to build capacity for MSMEs’ to capitalise on the opportunities for growth and export trade. Participants were involved in open discussions with key players from various business support organisations including the Caribbean Export Development Agency and the Barbados Investment Development Corporation. They were also engaged by representatives of other organisations such as the European Union Delegation and the Caribbean Development Bank. Presentations extensively covered areas of the EPA which were of fundamental importance for small business owners including understanding the rules and regulations for exporting goods. The workshop also included panel discussions on key topics and demonstrations of where and how participants could conduct greater market intelligence research for their company.

The main take-away points included that entrepreneurs must show more creativity and innovation in finding ways to take advantage of the opportunities available to them. Additionally, small business owners were urged to take a more aggressive approach towards conducting research and gaining more knowledge for their betterment. The concept of forming strategic alliances was also heavily emphasised by all presenters. Participants were encouraged to partner with other entrepreneurs in order to build capacity and make the sector stronger. As a result, MSMEs would be more capable of meeting the standards, requirements and demands of the EU market. Having this strength in numbers would also allow the sector to lobby effectively for required policy changes to ensure that the opportunities available under the EPA are more readily accessible. Lastly, small business owners were prompted to start thinking on a macro level with regards to their company brand. This can be done through ensuring that they have a good business plan and strategy and that overall improvements are made to their business operations in order to meet a globally competitive standard.

The comprehensive trade agreement formed by the EU was signed by Barbados and other CARIFORUM countries in 2008. This agreement was aimed at encouraging the trade in goods, services and investments between the two regions. It also sought to foster sustainable development and regional integration along with aiding economic adjustment and modernisation within the signed CARIFORUM territories. However, facilities like the CARIFORUM-EU EPA, have fallen short of the intended targets relative to mobilising MSMEs to participate in the trade process. This is evident as ten years after the EPA came into effect, CARIFORUM MSMEs have yet to maximise the opportunities available through this facility. Therefore, the Local and regional participants engaged in a presentation on the Importance of Strategic Partnerships and Modes of Service Delivery by presenter, Dr. Keron Niles.

Coming Soon...

The CEO’s

LAST WORD by Senator Lynette Holder

Spotlight IMORO, formerly Spa E’scentials was founded in March 2001 offering Spa and wellness services, consultancy and training to companies, groups and elite guests in Barbados by internationally certified cosmetic formulator, Ms. Portia Doyle who has over 25 years of experience in the Spa and Wellness industry. The company expanded in 2015 to include Spa and Body products and rebranded in 2017 with Spa E’scentials becoming a line of natural products within the IMORO brand. The brand includes a compilation of Caribbean history, heritage and natural remedial ingredients from land and sea to create rich body butters, luxurious oils and other organic cosmetics that naturally soothe and benefit the skin. The line has developed a loyal customer base both locally and regionally with customers in Antigua, British Virgin Islands, Grenada and the USA. Experience our products at the following Spas, Chakra Spa, Bansuri Spa, Prestige Hair and Nails, Signature Spa 246 and Wellness Footprints Antigua. Products are also available locally at Barbadiana Skymall, Organic Earth Pelican Village with more locations coming soon. Visit Imoro‘s website to shop their products at and follow them on Facebook at

On Our Members

Went Caribbean is well-known locally and internationally for their flagship brand- the WentWorx range of fusion blends of herbs and spices that give Caribbean food its distinctive savour. These all-purpose blends were inspired by Chef Derek Wents’ experience of growing up in the islands and coming to understand the subtle multi-cultural influences on traditional culinary flavors. In addition to the ease and convenience with which the blends provide hearty flavour to any Caribbean-style dish, they have gained popularity because they contain no sugar, salt, MSG, anti-caking agents or artificial preservatives. Growth within the company has also led the company to create products for the Health & Wellness sector which use locally sourced ingredients to generate life-supporting links to Agriculture and Food Security. Visit Chef Went at Holder’s Farmer’s Market every Sunday from 9 a.m to 2 p.m. to see the wide range of health products Went Caribbean is testing for their development potential. For more information,. contact Went Caribbean at Tel: (246) 624-8512 or visit their website at t-worx/

Based in the parish of St. Lucy in Barbados, Meridian Caribbean Inc. Windows was established in 2005 with an aim to fill the void in the Caribbean market for a reliable source of high quality uPVC windows, which could be delivered to customers "on time, every time". Since their inception, Meridian Caribbean Inc. Windows has become a household name in Barbados with windows and doors being distributed by all major retailers in the island and used by many local well renowned construction companies and contractors. Meridian Caribbean Inc has also had the pleasure of exporting throughout the Caribbean, cultivating strategic relationships and alliances with major entities in the region. Complimented by highly motivated staff who are knowledgeable in their respective areas of expertise, Meridian Caribbean Inc has expanded in both the size of their operation and their product range. While offering a variety of windows, doors, glass types and fencing, their prime objective is to offer excellent customer service and satisfaction in all they do. Contact Meridian Caribbean Inc at Tel: (246) 439-7727 or visit their website at

Success in Accounting for Small Business Level 3 NVQ topics including planning and managing small business finances and operating computerised accounting systems, aimed to ensure that candidates were well equipped to handle the crucial financial aspects of their businesses. Of the twelve candidates, eleven received full certification and one candidate received partial certification, giving the association a 92% rate of success.

The Small Business Association continues to maintain a high success rate as a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) centre. Testament to this is the recently concluded Accounting for Small Business Level 3 NVQ, where the centre hosted twelve aspiring candidates seeking to broaden their educational horizons and expand their skill set for the world of work. The units, which covered a wide range of

The programme manager of the association, Ms. Andrea Taylor, expressed immense pride at the hard work and dedication shown by all parties involved in the process and asserted that the NVQ centre would not be slowing its momentum any time soon.

current calendar year. The course which will aid small business owners in the knowledge of this modern way of conducting business will prove beneficial to those seeking to maintain relevance in this technological era and increase their global impact and profit margin. With the continued commitment and enthusiasm of the centre and its team, the forecast for this NVQ shows only professional development with a high chance of success.

In light of this, members seeking to add value to their business and fast track its growth are encouraged to sign up for the centre’s first online learning NVQ, E-Commerce Level 2, expected to commence by the end of the

What are the biggest mistakes made by small business owners?

Dr. Biz

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Get in Touch

The Small Business Association of Barbados, Small Business Association 101, Building 4, Harbour Suite 101 Bldg #4 Harbour IndustrialSuite Estate, Bridgetown, BarbadosIndustrial Estate, Bridgetown, Barbados Tel: (246) 228-0162 | Fax: (246) 228-0163 | Email: | Website: Tel: 246 - 228-0162 | Fax: 246 - 228-0613 | Email: | Website: