How was Kingston BETA March Edition ? | Here’s the Full Report

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Kingston BETA Tech Community Meetup + Pitch event, kicked off the first in its 2016 series on Thursday March 24th 2016. It was flush with announcements and 11 tech-driven pitches both from  aspiring and current Jamaican Tech Entrepreneurs, plus a new Youth Innovation Pitch segment for high school students.

The Announcements

matthewmcnaughtonslashroots
Matthew McNauhton, Co-founder of Slashroots.org

Slashroots is once again staging Developing the CaribbeanDevCa – the annual open data conference and code sprint which is staged across 6 Caribbean countries this year. Co-founder Matthew McNaughton shared that It will be held on May 5th – 6th, 2016 with Jamaica as the conference hub and the other Caribbean Countries which includes Cuba, Trinidad and Barbados having CodeSprints commonly known as hackathons.

Kingston BET Goes Caribbean – Being part of ConnectiMass’s Startup Caribe programme that’s helping to build out the Caribbean’s Startup Ecosystem since 2007 will now go Caribbean – Port of Spain BETA and Bridgetown BETA will be staged this year. Join the mailing list to get the dates for these events

Startup Weekend Jamaica the 54hr Experiential Entrepreneurship Event will once again be staged by ConnectiMass on July 1-3, 2016 in Kingston. The last event had over 100 attendees, 8 final teams, Jamaican and Caribbean mentors and coaches as well as renowned judges. The winner being Agrocentral – a tech4Agri Startup.

PitchitCaribbean– the Government of Jamaica and World Bank funded project, designed to support Caribbean Mobile App Startups was a sponsor of the event and announced their Pitchit Caribbean Challenge which is June this year in Montego Bay.

Keith Whyte Head PitchitCaribbean
Keith Whyte, Acting Head of PitchitCaribbean

The Programme was represented by Acting Head of the Programme Keith WHyte. He explained that mobile app development startups from across the Caribbean will pitch to judges and investors in the PitchIT Caribbean Startup Challenge at the Montego Bay Convention Centre, Jamaica.
Each of the top 5-teams/ enterprises will be awarded:
-Seed investment of US$5,000
– Positions in the PitchIT Caribbean start-up accelerator and incubator programme in their respective territories
-Mentoring and networking opportunities
-An opportunity to participate in an international pitching event.

Craig Williams, Brand Strategist at Seprod
Craig Williams, Brand Strategist at Seprod

Seprod Supporting Innovation + Entrepreneurship. A sponsor of the Youth Innovation section of the BETA Pitch segment, Brand Strategist at Seprod, Craig Williams made clear their commitment to innovation and entrepreneurship in Jamaica. Seprod was the first sponsor to sign on to support the Youth Innovation Pitch Segment at Kingston BETA

Coders of the Caribbean 

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This is a hackathon for the 25 and under age group in Jamaica. Organiser Jadan Johnson said that “Coders Of The Caribbean will give an opportunity for tech-entrepreneurs and Entrepreneurs to join the maker space and dedicate a weekend to learning and creating . Techies will dedicate 36 hours to building a mobile , web or hardware application ; pitch to a panel of Judges ; and at the end of the day interact with visionaries , mentors and build a community among themselves. ” The event will be on June 10, 2016 at the University of Technology Jamaica campus.

The BETA Pitches
There were two teams in the Youth Innovation BETA Pitch Segment.

dianneharris
Dianne Harris, Educator+ Entrepreneurship Trainer + ConnectiMass Advisory Board Member – introduces the Youth Innovation Segment

As one of the entrepreneurs Monique Powell in audience tweeted and said “ Wow, these kids in the #youthinnovation segment have raised the pitching bar at #kgnbeta. Nice work guys :) “ All aspiring entrepreneurs in this segment are high school students under age 18.

They were:

1. 2kMax:
noellevy2kmax

Noel Levy pitched 2kMax, which is effect a version of the dollar store on Instagram! All items posted on the Instagram channel will cost no more than $2,000 max and the items are tech related mainly smartphone accessories

2. Demons Within:

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This group of Young Entrepreneurs Christian Mair, Andrew Mair, Kurt Daley and Nicholas Pandoie deftly pitched their mobile game which was in a functioning BETA stage and proudly told us that they took a week of hard work to this stage. The audience was impressed.

The additional 8 pitches covered Music, eHealth, social commerce and social media.

  1. Already There by Entrepreneur – Chris Whitfield
    chiswhitfieldalreadythereAlready There, describes is a mobile app that allows travellers to “Discover things to do in Jamaica. Search, book & get picked up from your hotel. If you’re coming to our island then Already There Jamaica is the perfect app for you. We’ve pretty much included everything you could do in Jamaica and partnered with the friendliest drivers on the island so you don’t even have to worry about getting to the places you’ve found.”
    The App just went just went into public BETA.
    Download here and test it out and send feedback to Chris.

2. www.proudli.com

proudlirenae

Proudli is a patented social commerce App designed for the global African Diaspora, to promote and foster entrepreneurism and develop group economics between English speaking countries with China and Africa. Its founder is Ranae Bruce-Miller.

3. LinkupApp.xyz

linkupapp

Linkup is social-media mobile app that uses geo-fencing to create a community hub that is sensitive to Caribbean values. The App which is in BETA in the University Campuses in Kingston, Jamaica, allows users to share and view events in Jamaica, chat about relevant news or even share jokes and trade goods and services in your community. Its co-founder Kareem Panton pitched on behalf of the three member team.

4. JahMah.com

jahmah

This duo of entrepreneurs pitch Jahmah.com which is an internet radio and on demand streaming Mobile App that allows you to stream Caribbean’s music and cultural sounds.

5. Duvo App.

duvo

Duvo is an app that’s positioning itself to be the Caribbean’s Spotify.

6. dippso.com

dippsolloydlaing

Dippso is a A New Social Music Media Platform and describes their web app as “a new alternative experience used to curate, collect, and create your own virtual multimedia music library.
It’s not just audio. It’s not just videos. It’s a multimedia music social network. Listen to your favourite songs, or watch the video…or both. Collect them all with the click of a button. Discover new singles, artists and albums, while creating playlists to share with like minded music lovers from around the world. It was pitched by Entrepreneur Lloyd Laing

7. AppWax.co
AppwaxAppwax is an application engine which allows you to design and develop your ideas without needing to write one line of code. We allow you to create with a modular interface with over 20 features in an easy to use User Experience (UX). The Engine will allow for users to build and release for not only Android and iOS but also Hybrid or HTML versions for you to deploy on the web or in other mobile Operating Systems. The application also allows for those who would like further customisation to export their project code to Android Studio or Swift.

8. QuikClinik.com
QuickclinkJermaineQuikClinik is the eHealth Startup founded by Medical Doctor and Software Developer Jermaine McFarlane. Yes a doctor who taught himself to code! QuikClinik TeleHealth Services (QuikClinik) is an interdisciplinary digital health company. We believe that everyone should have ready access to quality healthcare and by utilising the latest technology and best practices we are making this a reality.

9. StartupRobot.com

winstonwilkinsstartuprobotStartupRobot uses technology to make it really easy to set up and maintain a compliant business in Jamaica. Founder: Winston Wilkins pitched the startup which has been doing business in Jamaica and gaining traction for a number of months.

See alot more event photos at our Facebook Page.

About Kingston BETA
Kingston BETA is the longest running Caribbean Tech Community Meetup + Pitch Off Event series. It’s the bi-monthly event that kickstarted the Jamaican Startup Movement in 2007 and was won two awards for its work in developing the Jamaican and Caribbean Startup Ecosystem. Since then over 60 events, 6,000 attendees and over 200 entrepreneurs from 6 Caribbean Countries as well as Diaspora US and UK have pitched their technology ideas.

Aspiring and current Jamaican/Caribbean entrepreneurs, developers, designers, college students, tech professionals, tech enthusiasts and investors attend the series – To Learn. Be Inspired. To Network.

The event has a BETA Pitch segment — that’s a platform for entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas that are tech driven or tech related. At the event we also invite speakers and have panel discussions and some of the greatest conversations are had and connections made at Kingston BETA.

Kingston BETA is produced by ConnectiMass as part of their Startup Caribe programme which is a regional initiative that’s been helping to grow the Caribbean Startup Ecosystem that helps entrepreneurs build great businesses .

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