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!


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 @ 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!

Node420, a Young Jamaican team wins AgriHack Talent Caribbean contest at 13th Caribbean Week of Agriculture

agrihack-carib-logo-greenICT4AG - And the winner is… Node420, from Jamaica. The team’s application, also called Node420, offers real-time weather analysis and automatic yield forecasts for farmers. The AgriHack Talent Caribbean contest, organised by CTA and partners, came to a close during the 13th Caribbean Week of Agriculture, held this week in Paramaribo, Suriname. The winning teams designed agricultural apps that can forecast crop yields, improve pest management and put farmers in touch with market outlets.

Second prize went to CropGuard, from Barbados, an app that seeks to enhance food security by helping farmers to protect their crops through pest diagnosis, monitoring and control. Third prize was awarded to UNICODE, from Suriname, with an application called Agri-Kari, designed to help farmers manage their land and sell their products.

Three Jamaicans vying for tech start-up funds reach semi-finals of global contest

atTECH NEWS - Out of an initiai pool of 500 global applicants, three Jamaicans who are competing for US$15,000 ($1.6 million) are semi-finalists in the Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) Tech-I competition. They are among a field of 67 contestants. Jermaine Henry, Dmitri Dawkins and Sheldon Duncombe hope to change Jamaica’s economic landscape by creating efficiencies and reducing operation costs in various sectors.

Dawkins is pitching a technology, research and development firm which practises lean start-up methodology to create solutions for businesses and government entities in the information and communications technology (ICT) sector. More

The 2nd Annual Development Bank of Jamaica Venture Capital Conference kicks off on Sept 9th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-09-01 at 11.12.50 AMWith the theme, TOWARDS A DYNAMIC ECOSYSTEM – linking capital, innovation, entrepreneurship for growth, The Development Bank of Jamaica and its partners will host the 2nd Annual Venture Capital Conference at the Jamaica Conference Centre, Downtown Kingston, Jamaica.

Here is what DBJ Promises!
The content:  At the 2014 Venture Capital Conference you will have the opportunity of participating in eye-opening discussions on the business and practices of venture capital and private equity.  Substantive conversations focus on the opportunities for investment, the business of investing, knowing when your business is VC ready and choosing the right opportunities in these rough economic times.  The topical issue of women entrepreneurs, their successes, opportunities, obstacles and challenges for growth through VC financing will be focus of one of our panel discussions.

Eight Caribbean partners selected to participate in the Agrihack Talent Caribbean competition

agrihack-carib-logo-greenICT4AG - Eight Caribbean Technology and Innovation Hubs have been selected to participate in the Agrihack Talent Caribbean competition, which seeks to support the development of ICT innovations and entrepreneurship in agriculture by young tech talent. The event is being staged by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), in collaboration with institutions including the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI), the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and ConnectiMass Hub (cHub).

Towards A Single Caribbean ICT Space Part 1

ITUInnovationPolitical Will Not Technology Needed for Success

In the face of the mounting economic and social challenges, the Caribbean urgently needs to tap into new sources of growth. Across the region, the search is on for areas that will create new job opportunities, improve its competitiveness and drive innovation. Creation of a Single ICT Space in CARICOM is expected to provide tremendous benefits, if the region can muster the collective strength to make it a reality.

Cautious Optimism
On the global stage, strategic use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) is widely acknowledged as a critical pillar for sustainable and inclusive growth. However, the Caribbean lacks a genuine single market for electronic communications. Seeking to address this, the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Heads of Government recently announced plans to establish a CARICOM Single ICT Space.

Data is the new OIL! Help the Caribbean get some! Take and Pass on this Survey on availability of Agriculture Open Data.

ctanetherlandsICT4AG- The survey aims to identify the availability, use and issues in relation with agriculture open data in the Caribbean. Open data are complete sets of information on an issue or activity, that are open and free to use, reuse, and redistribute. They are formatted for ease of use, in many cases take the form of databases, and favour public information, transparency, accountability and innovations.

It is undertaken by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA), in collaboration with the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) and Connectimass (a Caribbean association, in the framework of the Agrihack Talent Caribbean initiative, and of the efforts of these organizations to promote knowledge sharing on agriculture in the Caribbean. The AgriHack Talent Caribbean project aims to support the development of ICT innovations and entrepreneurship in agriculture by young people.

Most agricultural organizations have information on their website; we are more interested here on specific links to sets of data on specific topic(s) or activity(ies) that can be re-used.

Your response to this survey will help the development of ICT applications that will enhance the agricultural sector as well as help better address agriculture data challenges in the Caribbean. The research targets in particular agriculture stakeholders and IT developers involved in developing solutions for agriculture from the Caribbean.

It will only take a few minutes to complete this form.  Questions marked with an asterisk (*) are compulsory.

Please respond to this survey by 24 August 2014. Preferably, please respond today here

A revolution in mobile communication is coming to the Caribbean: Voice over LTE (VoLTE)

mobileplatformsMOBILE NEWS- When people talk about LTE networks, also known as 4G, they are mainly referring to data, specifically high-speed data. And it’s not unusual. The service is, after all, an “all-IP” technology, which makes maximum use of the efficient exchange of data packets for high speed downloading of text files, videos and photographs.