BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (November 12, 2009) - Barbados' Prime Minister Hon. David Thompson will launch a new Barbados Entrepreneurs' Venture Capital Fund on the island this Friday, November 13, 2009.

Intended to add new flavour to the investment market in Barbados, the fund is an essential component of the CBET Shepherding Model™ designed by local businessman Dr. Basil Springer to mitigate the risk of business failure and launch countries into a new era of economic development, one successful business after another.

Speaking ahead of the launch, Dr. Springer said "We expect the advent of sunrise industries, stimulated by the appointment of shepherds and business advisors and access to seed and venture capital funds, to contribute significantly to economic growth in Barbados."

He explained that the CBET Shepherding Model comprises three elements - an entrepreneur with an idea that has the "DNA of an elephant" i.e. an idea with the potential for global expansion; timely cash advances for business and implementation plan development as well as quick response to investment requests; and a shepherd (business mentor), supported by a team of business advisors, to help the entrepreneur nurture the business idea into a successful reality.

Statistics show that a large proportion of businesses fail within the first few years of existence. Having business mentors is an effective way to avoid the pitfalls of business development for entrepreneurs, yet no other venture capital firm in the region makes it mandatory for mentors to be a part of a business development team.

Barbados Entrepreneurs' Venture Capital Fund recognizes the value of the mentor-protégé relationship so the appointment of a shepherd (mentor) is a necessary condition for receiving funding. "With more businesses being guided onto the right path, the potential for returns is tremendous," said Dr. Springer, who noted that another great benefit of the fund is that investment will occur quickly after an entrepreneur demonstrates the viability of the proposed enterprise. "This new paradigm in the entrepreneurial development landscape will bring comfort to many a frustrated entrepreneur," he added.

It is proposed that the principal amount invested in the fund will be backed by a Barbados Government guarantee, which will be very attractive to an investor because it reduces overall investor exposure to the risk of failure.

The launch of the Barbados Entrepreneurs' Venture Capital Fund will take place at the George Washington House under the patronage of the Prime Minister at 7.00 pm. It will feature presentations from the six pilot projects currently being considered for venture capital funding.

For further information visit which will be live on the night of the launch.

Barbados Business Enterprise Ltd (BBEL) is a private/public sector partnership with the Caribbean Business Enterprise Trust (CBET) Inc. BBEL manages the Barbados Revolving Seed Capital Fund and the Barbados Entrepreneurs' Venture Capital Fund. BBEL is a virtual organisation that focuses on promoting economic development in Barbados. The trustees of BBEL are Sir Neville Nicholls (Chairman), Sir Stephen Emtage, Peter Boos and Hazel Highland.
*Photo Dr. Basil Springer

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