Hamilton, Bermuda 11 May 2022 – The BEDC has partnered with Canada’s #1 private business Accelerator, The Accelerator Centre (A.C.) out of Waterloo, to elevate its Enterprise Bermuda Incubator (E.B.I.) programme. A revised curriculum will complement the BEDC’s existing entrepreneurship course offerings to provide the 2022/23 E.B.I. cohort with high-quality support and guidance for start-up success.
The E.B.I. launched in February 2018 as a free of charge twelve-month incubation programme to help Bermuda’s start-ups get beyond the idea stage and start to bring their businesses to fruition. Initially, the BEDC could only accept eight participants due to a physically small incubator hub to house the entrepreneurs.
In 2022, in addition to the partnership with the A.C., the BEDC has expanded physically and technically to include three additional Incubator Hubs located in each of its Economic Empowerment Zones in North East Hamilton, Somerset, and St. George’s. This expansion has tripled the number of entrepreneurs that the 12-month programme can support annually.
Raymond Lambert, BEDC Director of the Micro Small & Medium Enterprise Unit stated “The BEDC Team have worked extremely hard to locate and renovate three new offices to facilitate the expanded programme. We are extremely excited for the opportunities this programme will offer for more Bermudian entrepreneurs.”
Erica Smith, BEDC Executive Director, said, “We are absolutely thrilled and extremely honoured to partner with the Accelerator Centre. BEDC mantra is to continue to improve its offerings in order to grow Bermuda’s entrepreneurial eco-system and so collaborating with the A.C. enables us to do this with the E.B.I. Access to their expertise helps us provide new opportunities to Bermuda’s entrepreneurs. Likewise, we’re excited with the expansion to the EEZs which allows us to support at least 24 start-ups annually while positively impacting those regional zones through incubating businesses who wish to start up in those locations!”
Said Jay Krishnan, C.E.O. of Accelerator Centre, “Through this new program, BEDC has taken the best of our globally recognised programme and combined it with local supports to create something truly unique. BEDC’s programme reflects the diversity and priorities of Bermudian business owners, and this innovative programme will deepen their impact as a key economic driver. We are looking forward to working with the BEDC and Bermudian business owners as they build thriving business with big impact.”
Competition will be high with at least twenty-four successful applicants selected for one of the coveted spots distributed across the Island in the east, west, and central. Each start-up will receive assistance with analysing and refining their business idea to best determine if it will work in and beyond the Bermuda market. Through the partnership with the A.C., BEDC has revamped the curriculum and with the use of a new online tool, Incubator Pro, the programme can now better track business progression and growth.
BEDC is also excited to announce that seasoned entrepreneur, Nikki Fagan, will be joining the programme as the E.B.I. Incubation Lead. She will support all the start-ups along their entrepreneurial journey. Said Nikki on being selected, “I can’t wait to get started!
When I saw the position advertised, I immediately said they created this role for me. My previous experience as co-owner of Brand Lion and my most recent passion project with my own business incubator has prepared me to excel as the Incubation Lead. Helping other entrepreneurs realise their dream is my passion!”
Selected start-ups will receive access to the revamped curriculum, BEDC’s entrepreneurial educational courses and programmes; free and subsidised office space; an assigned Business Development Officer; and personalized mentoring with industry experts. In addition, successful applicants will receive access to pro-bono or subsidised services in marketing, accounting, legal support, web development, and more; and an international entrepreneurial experience will be offered to a start-up that shines during the 12-month immersion programme.
With the fourth cohort having just ended in April, seven start-ups pursued their journey, launching and growing their businesses within Bermuda’s economic landscape, even during the Global Pandemic. Since the commencement of the programme, twenty-eight new enterprises have started up, and 80 jobs have been created as a result. The fourth cohort incubated the following businesses:
- Indira Swan student, mother, and founder of, The Cool Mom Club, a clothing brand, mom blog, and playgroup for millennial moms of diverse backgrounds.
- Keanne Bean with her business, Graceful Bodi; a health coaching business.
- Sionna Barton, the founder of J.A.G. Athletics, a business that provides a series of programs that are designed to teach youth & adults of all ages the fundamentals of any or all our combined athletic sports.
- Evan Heyliger, founder of Loquat Learning, a business that provides supplemental education for students between 7 and 17 years old in various subjects and life skills.
- Gavin Carter of Gavin’s Butter, a gourmet flavoured butter business.
- Juana Simmons, iWashBDA; a concierge laundry-based business providing pickup,sorting, washing, drying, folding, and ironing services.
- Rickai Edwards, owner of Cedar Beam Advancements, a collection of Bermuda based websites that provide information that can be conveniently found online directly or from Google search results.Dates to remember for one of the coveted and highly sought after spots:
- Applications are open now. Apply online at www.bedc.bm.
- Applications close on Friday, June 3rd
- Interviews of short-listed applicants will take place during the week of June 8th.
- The fifth cohort of the Enterprise Bermuda Incubator starts on June 14th.
Bermuda Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) is Bermuda’s premier source of free confidential business advice for entrepreneurs. The mission is to serve Bermuda’s local business community with the highest degree of professionalism by providing, authoritative business advice; counsel and loan guarantee support. Bermuda Business Starts Here! For more information visit www.bedc.bm.