Cuba’s pending tech revolution

TECH NEWS - Cuba’s entry into the modern high-tech era will require improvements to its electrical grid, a buildout and upgrade of its wireless networks and IT workforce training. This will not be easy, and it may not happen swiftly.

Cuba has an educated population craving technology, but it has little income for new tech. The Cuban government wants to trade with the U.S., but is paranoid about the outside world and has limited Internet access to 5% to 10% of the population, at best.

“The government has been very reluctant to have open Internet access,” said Harley Shaiken, chairman of the Center for Latin American Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. But “there is real hunger for technology,” and with the easing of the embargo, the government “will be facing new pressures,” he said. More

SAVE THE DATE! The Next Kingston BETA is on Thursday February 26th, 2015.

KBSave the Date Feb 2015STARTUPS – The first Kingston BETA event for this year is now confirmed for,  Thursday February 26th, 2015. It’s our 8th year of staging Jamaica and the Caribbean’s first and longest running Tech Meetup + Pitch Off!  So save the date!

Get your pitches ready!

Your fellow tech/startup community members as well as investors are waiting to hear from you. Have a great idea/Startup to pitch?  send your name, brief description to ingrid@connectiMass.com. And have a read of our guidelines here. We do Skype Video pitches from Caribbean Tech Entrepreneurs in the region and from the US and UK Diaspora as well.

Will you make the next list of Top Caribbean Startups to Watch in 2015 ? #jamaicanstartups #caribbeanstartups

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SiliconCaribe.com’s Top Caribbean Startups to Watch in 2015

trendsThe Caribbean’s Tech Startup Ecosystem started with the first wave of Internet Startups in the mid 90s, inspired by, and at times clones of, the American success stories.

The region had, and in some cases still has, its own eBay (jamdeal.com), Yahoo (top5Jamaica.com), early social networks (caribbeanmassive.com and vibesconnect.com),online dating (caribsingles.com),alumni networks  (ackee.com), its own Search Engine ( is4we.com), Online Ad Network ( caribclix), Car Classifieds             (trinituner.com) and so much more.

It was a time when entrepreneurs bootstrapped, squeezed alot out of DSL Internet speeds, and without the help of accelerators, hubs or incubators, used primarily online advertising and affiliate marketing to make money. Some failed, learned and evolved; some made money, and others sold their websites for major money.

Eastern Caribbean Telecommunication (Ectel) slams Digicel’s ‘interception’

ectel_logoOn Thursday, Digicel issued a news release in which it agreed with the position taken by the telecommunications regulator in the Eastern Caribbean (Ectel) on the acquisition by Cable & Wireless Communications of Columbus International.In the statement, Digicel described as “dismissive statements… constituting an insult to the regulatory authorities and Governments of the Ectel member states; and, particularly, those of Grenada, St Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines” the announcement by CWC and Columbus that regulatory notifications and approvals would be required in the United States, Barbados, Jamaica and Trinidad.  

Startuprobot Re-Engineers Company Registration

winstonwilkins-startuprobot

Winston Wilkins, CEO of StartUpRobot

At 37, Winston Wilkins, CEO and founder of StartUpRobot (SUR), the company which promises to take the pain out of company registrations, has turned a hobby in IT into a new company. His previous idea – that of taking the pain out of lunch lines – did not quite catch fire, and was turned down by mentor JJ Geewax, angel investor and Google engineer.  But that’s history.

Caribbean entrepreneurs need to look to Diaspora for funding

images-29Caribbean entrepreneurs who are looking for funding to develop new or existing businesses are being encouraged to look to their own nationals living abroad.  “Diaspora financing should be explored as a source of funding for entrepreneurs”, said Aun Rahman, head of the infoDev Access to Finance Programme, at the World Bank Group.

Startup Weekend Trinidad is back for Global Startup Battle 2014!

EVENT: unnamed

 

Are you ready for battle?

Startup Weekend T&T is back for Global Startup Battle 2014!

Kingston BETA- this Thursday ahead of Global Entrepreneurship Week 2014

kgnbetaNoV2014Ahead of Global Entrepreneurship Week 2014, we at Connectimass Foundation reflect on our tech event Kingston BETA- which is the first and longest running Tech Community meetup in the Caribbean. It’s also just ahead of celebrating 8 years in kickstarting the tech startup movement here in Jamaica, when we had our first event on February 28th, 2007. At that meetup  with 90 early tech adopter attendees and 3 Caribbean countries represented. It has grown into  the hub of Jamaica’s tech startup scene and a platform of inspiration and connection also for a number of Caribbean entrepreneurs-over 60 events, 6000 attendees and 200 entrepreneurs who have pitched their ideas.

As with all journey’s, Kingston BETA has enjoyed a rollercoaster of a ride of ebbs and flows all fueling its growth these past years. It has become the go to place for inspiring, connecting and training of aspiring and current Jamaican and Caribbean tech entrepreneurs. It has hosted visitors from Silicon Valley (West Coast USA), Silicon Alley (NewYork), Silicon Roun-a-bout (London), local, regional and international investors, Government Ministers and officials, CEOs and executives from Corporate Jamaica, Development Executives from WorldBank and IDB and so many more.

This Thursday is our Last event for 2014

We are staging our final event for 2014 this Thursday November 13th, 2014 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, 6:30pm $500. Drinks Included. 8 Entrepreneurs from the local scene including 2 from the Caribbean Diaspora who have signed up to pitch their tech driven ideas. We will have announcements from members of the Tech Community and a few special guests. Join our community, See you there

Follow the action on Thursday by joining us on Twitter @kingstonbeta and hashtad #kgnbeta

 

Small Businesses and ICT

JamaicaStartupBootcamp1To establish almost any business takes, among other things, hard work, dedication and sacrifice. Globally, well over 90% of businesses are classified as micro-enterprises, that is having less 10 employees, and in many instances, they comprise just the business owner. A recent survey conducted by the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC) revealed that the incorporation of ICT/technology was “an area of major need” for Jamaica’s micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) (Source: Jamaica Gleaner).

High-Tech, High Yields: Caribbean Farmers Reap Benefits of ICT

Farmers inScreen Shot 2014-11-05 at 9.29.30 PM the Caribbean are being encouraged to make more use of farm apps and other forms of ICT in an effort to increase the knowledge available for making sound, profitable farming decisions. Peter Thompson of Jamaica’s Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) said Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology is being increasingly used to track “localised conditions, pests and disease prevalence. The technology will not only add value to us but to the farmers in giving information that they need.”

EVENT: The Next Kingston BETA is on November 13th, 2014

kgnbetaNoV2014TECH EVENT- Are you an aspiring or current entrepreneur, designer, developer, college student or tech enthusiast, investor, potential mentor- join the longest running Tech Startup Community Meetup in the Caribbean– we want to see you at the next KINGSTON BETA -Jamaica’s Tech Community Meetup on Thursday November 13th, 2014 at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel, 6:30 p.m-9:30p.m, Community Contribution is $500.

This is event is produced by us here at Silicon Caribe and ConnectiMass Foundation!

PITCH YOUR IDEA or STARTUP

Get your pitches ready! Your fellow tech/startup community members as well as investors are waiting to hear from you. Have a great idea/Startup to pitch?  send your name, brief description to ingrid @ ConnectiMass.com. And have a read of our guidelines here. We welcome Skype Video pitches from Caribbean Tech Entrepreneurs in the region and the Diaspora as well.

And yes, this year marks the 7th anniversary of ConnectiMass Foundation staging Kingston BETA. Over 50 events, 5000 attendees and 250 Jamaican/Caribbean entrepreneurs are come to our events. Entrepreneurs and the event itself has been awarded and also featured in local, regional and international media and events and we’ve only just begun.

JOIN US: Follow @Kingstonbeta  @connectimass in the meantime!