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Tag Archives: Entrepreneurship

Business Start-Up Entrepreneurship

5 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Naming a Business

One of the most difficult parts of the entrepreneurial journey is in naming the business. On many occasions, entrepreneurs are stumped for extended periods while brainstorming to decipher the appropriate name for their businesses. In many cases, some enterprises pay large sums to business naming companies to determine the best name for them. For entrepreneurs whose companies represent a brand, the naming process is easy since the business will simply take the name of the brand. However, in a more general context, the previous situation somewhat demonstrates an outlier, so the naming process it is not always as easy. Thus, many businesses sometimes get it wrong. A company’s name is quite essential since it can be considered as the foundation on which it is built; therefore, everything else will be dependent on its success. Below we take a look at some of the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make when naming their businesses. These should be avoided at all cost.

  • Naming Based on Location– Creating a name that is centered on the current location of a business is one of the mistakes that many businesses make especially if the entrepreneur intends to expand in the future. For instance, many businesses name themselves after their country, village, or town such as St John Pizzeria thereby limiting the owner if he/she decides to open another pizzeria outside of St John. Therefore, business owners should always try to make their business name more open in anticipation for future growth.
  • Having an Obscure Name- Over the years, I have come across many businesses with names that are difficult to pronounce, challenging to spell, and in some cases, I simply do not know what the name is supposed to mean. This situation should be avoided at all cost. While many entrepreneurs try to be unique with their business’ names, they should ensure that they are not shooting themselves in the leg with a poor naming strategy.
  • Choosing a Name and the Domain is Unavailable– Many entrepreneurs go crazy after they select a name for their business, start building the foundation for the business, construct their website then attempt to register their domain name only to realize it is already taken. If such an unfortunate eventuality occurs, they then either have to rethink their business’ name or try to buy the domain from whoever owns it. Therefore, to avoid such a situation, business owners should ensure that as soon as you select a name find out if the domain is available, and once it is unfilled, purchase it immediately. Taking such proactive steps would save considerable amounts of time and unnecessary stress in the future. The same goes for twitter, Facebook, and other social media platforms. Business owners should also ensure that their businesses’ names are available on those platforms since social media can be used as a vital marketing tool.
  • Infringing on Someone Else’s Name– When entrepreneurs decide on a name for their business, it is greatly advised that they search in the registry for trademarks in whichever country they reside. Not using a name that is already registered can help avoid costly legal problems in the future. If business owners do not have the time to do a thorough search, it is advised that they get someone to do it for them.
  • Choosing Names that do not relate to the Business– While a name is being chosen, entrepreneurs should be mindful that they do not choose a name that has nothing to do with what the company will be engaged in to avoid confusion of their customers. They should ensure that people can relate what the business does through its name.
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Caribbean Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurship Social Media

Why Destra Garcia Is Dominating Social Media And Music While Staying True To The Caribbean

I spent 5 years in Mexico, and one of my fondest memories was the occasional “Fiesta Caribeña” my friends and I organized. We mainly planned and executed the event to maintain our Caribbean identity and culture as well as to help our Mexican friends experience our different countries through us without actually going there. With that said, it then begs the question, how can the average Caribbean national or even better those in privileged positions like entertainers play their part by painting pictures of the Caribbean to others who are not as privileged to be there? My last two articles on the Huffington Post dealt with the responsibility Caribbean natives have to help control the narrative about our respective countries in the media and how Caribbean soca artists can use social media to build their brands worldwide. Those topics are very important to me, and I also think they go hand in hand since Caribbean artists and well-known personalities can make a significant contribution by promoting themselves while eliminating some of the misconceptions people may have about the Caribbean.

Often times, saying what should or needs to be done is easy but actually following through is most times where the difficulty lies. I firmly believe that action is the only true agent of change, so I thought the best way to strengthen my points was to follow up with an article highlighting someone of reputable standing that is practicing exactly what I outlined in my first two pieces. I thought who better to feature than the Caribbean Queen of Bacchanal herself Destra Garcia. In my opinion, Destra does a great job with social media and have built a raving community around her brand online. She uses her music to give people in different cities around the world a view of Caribbean, especially her home country Trinidad and Tobago, without really being there.

Her latest single, “Luv with the Riddim“, which is a cross between soca and pop, is a classic example of how she is able to infuse a Caribbean flavor into everything she does. While it is easy for me to provide my opinion on why Destra perfectly epitomises what I spoke about in my last two articles, I thought it would better to get the views directly from The Queen of Bacchanal herself. So I spoke with Destra, and I was absolutely blown away. Blown away not only because she is awesome, and I am a fan, but by the fact that she embodies everything I have been speaking about. Caribbean artists, especially those on the rise, should definitely take a page from her book to see that what I have been writing about is indeed possible.

In terms of helping shape and control the image and reputation of Caribbean countries, Destra indicated that whenever she goes to any country to perform, she does not tailor her performances to suit the country. Although she is blessed with the unique ability of versatility with many different musical genres such as reggae and the likes, she is primarily known as a soca artist, as evidenced by her eleven captivating albums. Consequently, when she performs, it’s authentically Caribbean. She brings a colourful display, energy, and plain fun to her performances which are all synonymous with soca and by extension the Caribbean.

In all fairness, a number of other artists carry the Caribbean with them wherever they go and try to help control its image. For instance, I clearly remember when the regrettable death of a tourist occurred in Grenada, Hollice “Mr. Killa” Mapp, one of Grenada’s cultural ambassadors, took to Facebook to address the issue and tried to dispel some of the rumours that were circulating at the time. However, not all Caribbean nationals and entertainers, particularly soca artists, take advantage of social media in that way to help shape their country’s image and build their brands.

Additionally, as a digital marketing strategist, one of the things I enjoyed most about my talk with Destra was how active she is on social media where she has cultivated a huge community around her music. While many popular figures have social media managers, Destra sees things differently. Therefore, to build a level of authenticity, she believes that it is imperative that she does it herself. Just like Gary Vaynerchuk, a social media mogul and chief advocate of its use, she is very engaging with her online community. Every tweet, mention, comment, like, retweet, and reply all come directly from The Queen of Bacchanal herself and not someone acting on her behalf like most people of her caliber do.

I believe that the Caribbean has a lot to offer and not only where music is concerned. For instance, if most Caribbean nationals, regardless the number of followers they have on Instagram or social media on a whole, decided to take matters into their own hands and not let the media houses in the large countries shape people’s perception of the Caribbean, huge changes may result. I also believe that Caribbean soca artists, entrepreneurs, athletes, and others need to use social media to build their brands and communities around their brands. Consequently, social media is certainly the way to go.

At the end of my talk with Destra, I was left with an interesting tidbit however. I asked her to name one thing a lot of people do not know about her, and she responded that many people do not know that she speaks three languages namely English, French, and Spanish. This was rather interesting to me since, I speak the same three languages. Well in all honesty, my French is terrible, but soon it will be as fluent as hers. More importantly, I even thought to myself that with her ability to speak multiple languages she is in a privileged position and has greater potential to share the Caribbean even further with foreign audiences if she so chooses.

I will keep advocating for Caribbean nationals and entertainers to help shape their countries’ brands online, and with renewed vigour after my conversation with Destra, The Queen of Bacchanal, who is a chief proponent of my belief, I will continue to encourage Caribbean people to use social media, the fastest, easiest, and off course the cheapest way, to build their communities around their brands. Why is Destra able to dominate social media and build a thriving community around her brand? It is because she stays true to herself and not afraid to help shape the narrative of the Caribbean wherever she goes.

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Entrepreneurship Social Media The Beyond the hustle show

Creating a Marketing Strategy for a Caribbean Non-Profit

We had a great time on Beyond the Hustle. Leon share a lot of value bombs with our special guests Sandra and Andre from Still I Rise. A Non profit based in the United Kingdom and benefiting survivors of domestic violence in Grenada. Listen to the show on Creating a Marketing Plan for a Caribbean Non-Profit.

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Caribbean Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurship

To my Grenadian and Caribbean Entrepreneurs; Stop Disrespecting the Hustle

This morning casually having a conversation and just chatting, something came to my attention that angered me greatly; I had to write this. Someone mentioned that one of Grenada’s top photographers got an opportunity to go further his skills in China and another person who thought he shouldn’t have gotten that opportunity started raising hell. One of the statements that was made was that he just came on the scene two years ago more or less, so why is he getting that opportunity when there are people on the photography scene longer.  Frankly I do not know any of the parties personally, however I had to address this because of the level of disrespect towards the hustle and towards the market.

Let’s get this clear, it doesn’t matter if you are black, white, Asian, 70 years old, 10 years old, if you had a business for the past 50 years or if you started 4 weeks ago. If you have the balls to put in the work necessary to build your brand and take your business to the next level the market will reward you. The most important word in business is hustle. You cannot and will not build a business or build your brand if you live for weekends, if as soon as 4pm you are done for the day and you go home to watch TV and go hang out with your boys. The market will respect and reward you when you put in the work necessary.

There are many talented photographers in Grenada and around the world for that matter, but talent is not enough, you have to put in the work. If you are sitting down at home with your talent while someone else is out there putting in the work to build their brand, that person will beat you every time. It is too easy today to market yourself and build your brand for free to waste your time trying to shit on someone else’s hustle when the market reward them with a win. The mere fact that someone was able to start their business 2 years ago and become one of the most successful and known personality in the industry means that everyone that was there before him sat back and let that shit happen. Being a great photographer is not enough, you need to have a business mindset and if you don’t know about marketing and branding then team up with someone who does, business is a team sport.

Entrepreneurs in Grenada and the Caribbean need to realize that they are not entitled to anything, so first of all get rid of this entitlement mentality.  Your age does not entitle you to anything in business, the amount of time you have been in business does not entitle you to anything. You have to work, when everyone else is having fun, you should be working, you should be honing your craft. Hustle will always beat talent when talent doesn’t hustle. If you are complaining and going all out to degrade someone and belittle your competitors proves you have absolutely no idea about how business operates. Instead of complaining, focus on your shit, go out there and put in the work. If you want to get the opportunity to go China, put in the work, if you want more clients, put in the work, if you want to be well known in a particular industry, put in the work.

If you are not going to put in the work, if you are not going to hustle, if you prefer to watch Game of Throne, if you prefer to be out partying hard and having fun instead of working on your business then you have absolutely no right to talk and try badmouth someone who is doing it and being rewarded by the market. And the market consists of people, just in case you guys were thinking it’s some big bubble out there. If you disagree with all that I said no problem, take me up on it and I will take you to Hustle School Kimron Corion style!

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Caribbean Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurship Featured

Should Caribbean Nationals Get Involved in Entrepreneurship?

On Thursday September 3rd, I had the pleasure of hosting the first blab discussion of the Caribbean Entrepreneurs Mastermind Group. We spoke about why Caribbean nationals should get involved in entrepreneurship and we had some solid advice worth millions from people like Monique Welch, Daniel Williams, Lovell Felix, Cemal Copeland, Dwayne Clement, Donald Thomas and Devon Wells. I want to share the experience with you as we had a really great time, talking about Entrepreneurship in the Caribbean. We will be hosting this show every Thursday at 10pm Eastern time.

Comment and share your thoughts below and you are welcomed to join us on the next Show on September 10th 2015.

 

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Entrepreneurship

5 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Naming a Business

One of the most difficult parts of the entrepreneurial journey is in naming the business. On many occasions, entrepreneurs are stumped for extended periods while brainstorming to decipher the appropriate name for their businesses. In many cases, some enterprises pay large sums to business naming companies to determine the best name for them. For entrepreneurs whose companies represent a brand, the naming process is easy since the business will simply take the name of the brand. However, in a more general context, the previous situation somewhat demonstrates an outlier, so the naming process it is not always as easy. Thus, many businesses sometimes get it wrong. A company’s name is quite essential since it can be considered as the foundation on which it is built; therefore, everything else will be dependent on its success. Below we take a look at some of the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make when naming their businesses. These should be avoided at all cost.

business name mistakes

  • Naming Based on Location– Creating a name that is centered on the current location of a business is one of the mistakes that many businesses make especially if the entrepreneur intends to expand in the future. For instance, many businesses name themselves after their country, village, or town such as St John Pizzeria thereby limiting the owner if he/she decides to open another pizzeria outside of St John. Therefore, business owners should always try to make their business name more open in anticipation for future growth.
  • Having an Obscure Name– Over the years, I have come across many businesses with names that are difficult to pronounce, challenging to spell, and in some cases, I simply do not know what the name is supposed to mean. This situation should be avoided at all cost. While many entrepreneurs try to be unique with their business’ names, they should ensure that they are not shooting themselves in the leg with a poor naming strategy.
  • Choosing a Name and the Domain is Unavailable– Many entrepreneurs go crazy after they select a name for their business, start building the foundation for the business, construct their website then attempt to register their domain name only to realize it is already taken. If such an unfortunate eventuality occurs, they then either have to rethink their business’ name or try to buy the domain from whoever owns it. Therefore, to avoid such a situation, business owners should ensure that as soon as you select a name find out if the domain is available, and once it is unfilled, purchase it immediately. Taking such proactive steps would save considerable amounts of time and unnecessary stress in the future. The same goes for twitter, Facebook, and other social media platforms. Business owners should also ensure that their businesses’ names are available on those platforms since social media can be used as a vital marketing tool.
  • Infringing on Someone Else’s Name– When entrepreneurs decide on a name for their business, it is greatly advised that they search in the registry for trademarks in whichever country they reside. Not using a name that is already registered can help avoid costly legal problems in the future. If business owners do not have the time to do a thorough search, it is advised that they get someone to do it for them.
  • Choosing Names that do not relate to the Business– While a name is being chosen, entrepreneurs should be mindful that they do not choose a name that has nothing to do with what the company will be engaged in to avoid confusion of their customers. They should ensure that people can relate what the business does through its name.
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Entrepreneurship Featured

Upgrading Your Small Business Online With Content Marketing

For many of you, the idea of content marketing might be a foreign concept or one that has not been explored too deeply. Therefore, what is content marketing and what does it entail? The concept is simple. Content marketing is the consistent formation, organization, promotion, and circulation of material that current and potential consumers may find useful and may ultimately alter and/or enhance their pattern of consumption. Content marketing can take a variety of forms such as using apps, videos, podcasts, blogs, and other forms of online media.

With the growth, reach, and promotion of the use of the internet as well as the proliferation of social media, an open and willing audience is at your mercy. Once it is done well, positive results are guaranteed like shooting fish in a barrel. Additionally, smaller businesses that have limited budgets should gladly jump on the content marketing bandwagon. Creating thoughtful, well researched content would only serve to benefit their companies through the free or inexpensive generation of leads, branding for their businesses, reduction in market costs, and interact with patrons who may consider them authorities in their fields because of the production of high quality content.

However, for content marketing to be effective, a strategy or some sort of methodology should be employed. Nothing should be done on the basis of guess work. You must be deliberate in your approach. To effectively understand the demands of the market and the information people are willing to invest in, it is advised that some sort of research is carried out before delving into the world of content marketing. Once done well, content marketing could be a sustainable venture so taking a shot in the dark is not encouraged.

Another useful component of creating effective and helpful content is to always keep in mind that the information should appeal to the patrons’ emotion and senses. Generally, most individuals would consider themselves to be rational beings. However, we are guided and sometimes overtaken by our instinct and emotions. Just ask the lady in the mall who just bought her 50th pair of shoes or the NBA fans who bought their latest teams’ gear. These persons may have practical, rational reasons why they forked out the cash, but in many instances, purchases are made because of the emotional connections individuals have with certain products. Therefore, created content should be engaging and emotionally charged.

Consequently, with the benefits that content marketing could generate, you should seriously consider using it to get ahead. However, ensure that you are strategic in your approach and formulate content that tugs on the emotional heart strings of your current and potential patrons.

 

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Uncategorized

My One Month Stint as a Toronto District School Board Constituency Assistant

The date was March 7th 2014 when I finally made the move to Toronto. I was patiently waiting for the day to arrive, and my wife was thrilled. However, the change was met with mixed emotions. I had to give up everything I worked hard to achieve in Grenada, so it was difficult. The toughest part was leaving my entrepreneurial endeavours behind. I couldn’t move my business with me because it was too location specific. At that moment, I vowed that I would start over and build an empire in Toronto that I could take with me anywhere. Although I knew my declaration was easy to say but difficult to do, I gave myself the assurance that I would eventually get things in motion.

After a couple months of working and settling down, I felt the urge to do something to make a difference in others’ lives. As a One Young World Ambassador, I truly believe that helping people is one of my roles in this life. I was in the process of building my entrepreneurial venture when an amazing opportunity to positively impact the youths in Toronto presented itself. I had the esteemed privilege to work alongside the amazing Tiffany Ford, the newly elected Trustee at the Toronto District School Board, representing Ward 4 (Jane and Finch) as her assistant. We had a great team which was comprised of another assistant named Christopher Cho, Trustee Ford, and myself.

Christopher was born in Montreal, and he moved to Toronto to pursue his Masters of Global Affairs at the Munk School of Global Affairs. We worked well together to ensure that Trustee Ford’s affairs were properly handled, so she could effectively reach and interact with the people in Jane and Finch. Our outstanding partnership happened for a few weeks until one day I received a call from Trustee Ford with a rather unfortunate message. She said, “Kimron, I have bad news; I have to let you go.” Since I was only able to hold the post for a couple of weeks, I wondered if sucked that much. Fortunately, it was made clear that I wasn’t to blame. Apparently, the Ministry of Education instructed the Trustees to terminate the services of their constituency assistants and dissolve their offices.

From what I gathered, previous assistants performed tasks outside the scope of their operations which cultivated and perpetrated a culture of fear among the overseers, so I had to pay for their delinquency.  Truthfully, I didn’t think the outcome was too bad because I would have gotten more time to work on building my business SocialEyez Media. However, I thought to myself that it must be tough for Trustee Ford. She had been recently elected, and now she had to pay the price then attempt to fix the dysfunctional system that she met. A number of directives had to be met, 13 in particular. Apart from getting rid of the assistants, other stipulations included giving up their offices and moving to a shared location, creating a plan to close some schools in 3 years, cutting the pay of the director of education among others.

To this day, I wish I was given a chance to make a true difference and to help Trustee Ford make the necessary changes and impact in her Ward. Although she has limited resources, I am confident that she would accomplish the goals that she set. It’s now time for me to do the same because I believe entrepreneurship is one the ways that people could make a huge difference. Being able to aid in the development of your community and the wider world by introducing something that will help change people’s lives is a great way to make an impact. Therefore, entrepreneurship will be the next step in my life’s journey.

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Best Post Caribbean Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurial Stories Entrepreneurship

Caribbean Entrepreneur Barnadette “Camille” Warren: St Vincent and the Grenadines

Today i present to you Vincentian Entrepreneur, Camille Warren, we had a very interesting chat and i wish to present some of the things we spoke about. I do hope this will inspire aspiring entrepreneurs and actual entrepreneurs.
 
Bernadette “Camille” Warren is an entrepreneur from the Village of Belair in St Vincent. She is the wife of Taireen Warren, who is also her business partner. Taireen loves business, He has a degree in Business Administration , has acquired knowledge in management, communication and, organizational skills that is quite essential to starting or having a successful business. Camille is creative, charismatic with keen business insights from her previous work experiences. Their passion for business and helping people gave birth to their business Brio Che. 
1.       Tell me about your business, what is it about?
Brio Che is an eco-friendly brand/business offering an array of natural, handmade, health and beauty coconut products. Brio Che means, “A life of fun and vitality.” We currently offer; Organic Virgin & Pure Coconut oil, Organic Coconut Soaps, Eco Friendly Scented Candles in Coconut Shell, Exfoliating Body Scrubs, and Moisturizing Lip Balms all made from coconut goodness. It is also an agricultural, environmental and health initiative to encourage persons to utilize the natural resources here on our island.
2.      What ignited the spark in you to start a new business venture? How did the idea for your business come about?
The spark was the moment I was at my grandmother’s house and she was busy processing coconut to make coconut oil. It was something she has been doing for over 50 years and seems to enjoy. I got in on the fun as she passed on her knowledge and expertise to me. My fascination has always been to use the coconut milk to make Gelato (Ice Cream) but this was a bigger idea that required much more financing. It wasn’t long before we decided to start Brio Che with a coconut line to make our own natural products as it was also getting hard to keep up with purchasing healthier alternatives.
3.      How many hours do you work on your business a day on average?
Oh wow no sleep, just kidding. 7am-9pm or 9am-11pm, so like 14hours a day, sometimes 18hrs. Hubby has a fulltime job so he has work at work and work when he gets home, exactly what he says all the time.  We do believe working hard and smart is one of the main ingredients to success so it is necessary. I will get up and get dressed in my work overall/attire as if I was going to work, so that I stay focus and discipline.  
4.      What motivates you?
I draw motivation from every positive thing that surrounds me.  God, nature, love, great people, good books, my desire to accomplish phenomenal things in life amidst the challenges and making people happy. It brings such satisfaction to see the smile on someone’s face after I’ve just helped them in some way.
5.      What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?
I despise dealing with overly negative or difficult people. Hubby seems to have a knack for that though so I am learning a lot from him. I can’t think of anything else that I am fearful of right now. I do get nervous about things I don’t necessarily have control over, but at the same time I can manage that by proper planning or improving. I now understand things don’t always go the way you anticipate even with the best plans, so being able to move forward is important.
6.     How do you define success?
Success to me is about being happy with where you are at in life, having accomplished specific or personal goals and making your dreams a reality.  I don’t believe I am successful just yet, but I will be in a few years.
7.      Who has been your greatest inspiration?
Everyone who supports our journey inspires us to persevere.  Happy customers, other business people or organizations that offer their guidance, friends and family that genuinely wants us to succeed inspires us because they believe we can do great things and this gives us the confidence and motivation to always do our best.
8.      What book has inspired you the most? (OR what is your favourite book?)
My favourite book, Wow, i have a ton of favorites, smiling… especially in audio format like Anthony Robbins, he is my source for motivation. However someone lent me a copy of David Novak- “Taking people with you,” which I thoroughly enjoyed. I really need to get my own copy. His book is a unique insight on personal development, and how to bring out the best in others. It is one of the best, most practical hands-on books on leadership I’ve ever read. My plan is to apply the principles I’ve learnt, to be a charismatic and successful Entrepreneur, and assist other persons along my journey… it really is the only way to make big things happen.
9.      What is your favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
What I love about being an entrepreneur is the ability to make the decisions. Though hubby is the decisive one, having my hubby as my business partner, with his great set of skills and keen business perspective is awesome. The flexibility to work from anywhere is my greatest love and knowing the success of our business is up to us. I also think it is quite fulfilling creating an opportunity for ourselves that may someday create opportunities for others.
10.   Do you think that entrepreneurship is important to your local economy and why?
Yes, I think entrepreneurship is good for the growth of our local economy and is very important. One of our goals was to utilize our resources on our island to reduce imports, while inspiring persons to support more locally made products, so more money stays here to develop our communities.  It is high time we as a small island start exporting too. This will intensify competition, create employment, increase productivity, and offer customers value. So entrepreneurship really does benefit everyone along the way.
11.  Where do you see yourself and your business 10 years from now?
I see myself as a very successful entrepreneur by then, with our very own Brio Che, Health Store and Gelato Cafe not only in St.Vincent but several places around the world. I see myself traveling around the world. I will also like to have an establishment that assists other entrepreneurs. I know how hard it can be to have great ideas and not being able to make them a reality.
12.  What three pieces of advice would you give to students who want to become entrepreneurs? An entrepreneur is one who takes initiative, creates his or her own opportunities and accepts some risks…so be prepared to take risks. Secondly being discipline is important I think the hardest part is the discipline it takes to get everything together. Finally, stay motivated and focus on your goals, you have to have a clear vision of where you going or what you want to achieve.  Finally as long as you are passionate about your business and committed to delivering your best, people will notice. The rest will follow.

 

Please check out their  Website here
Like Brio Che on facebook: Facebook.com/briochesvg

Email briochesvg@gmail.com for more information

Click Here to check out more inspiring stories from other Caribbean Entrepreneurs

 

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