The Bahamas-based Kanoo Innovation Hub is looking for local entrepreneurs, who will receive technical support and training to develop and grow technology-based businesses.
The hub is an innovation accelerator designed in conjunction with Draper University, a leading authority on accelerator programs in Silicon Valley, United States.
Kanoo accelerates start-ups by equipping participants with tools, techniques, and funding to identify problems and generate innovative solutions.
Speaking recently on the Jamaica Information Services (JIS) online discussion program, ‘Studio 58A’, the centre’s co-founder, Davina Bain, said successful applicants will be trained for several weeks to convert their ideas at what he called as ‘minimum viable. produce’.
The deadline for submissions is November 15, and applicants using the registration code – ‘Studio 58A’ – will be prioritized during the selection process. Those interested can visit canoeinnovationhub.com for application requirements.
“We’ve created a bridge directly to Silicon Valley and Draper University to enter the network of venture capitalists. It is also a way for entrepreneurs across the Caribbean to connect and share ideas in one ecosystem, to ensure their businesses can scale up in the region before expanding globally,” Bain said.
He added that the organization focuses on supporting entrepreneurs and innovative ideas that use technology to solve problems or build on solutions that can be applied in the region.
“We have three levels of this progressive programming. You have the initial cohort, that is for two weeks. In February, we [will] there is level two, which is a pre-accelerator; this will happen for four weeks. The top 30 people from the program will enroll in that, and then the top 10 people will go to an immersion program in Silicon Valley,” Bain explained further.
Draper University’s head of partnerships and business development, Khadija Ghazi, said the training sessions are conducted by other entrepreneurs who have built businesses in the technology industry.
“We only bring in entrepreneurs, people who have built, people who have pivoted, people who have failed, and people who have raised funding who are delivering the content. We also have discord groups, where the discussions take place, and you are also surrounded by other entrepreneurs sharing ideas about what they are working on,” Ghazi said.
He added that once the training is completed, the entrepreneurs will also become part of a wider ecosystem to receive advice and other forms of support.
“The thing I appreciate the most [is], it is not a ‘chop’ after two weeks. You will become a part of the largest entrepreneurial ecosystem in the world. Did you learn something that you could not apply? You come back for consulting, mentoring or financing [support, and] you will continue to be part of this ecosystem,” Ghazi explained.