Fifteen participants are attending a ‘Business Internationalization Training Workshop’ organised jointly by the United Nations International Trade Centre based in Geneva and the Division of Science, Technology and Innovation (DSTI), which kicked off yesterday morning at the Savoy Resort and Spa, Beau Vallon.
The ITC programme is designed around tech start-ups and those selected for the training are the first cohort involved in business internationalization, which is how a company takes steps to increase its footprint or capture greater market share outside its country by branching out into international markets.
The programme is being funded by United Kingdom’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and local bank Nouvobanq has also partnered with DSTI and ITC to champion this cause by sponsoring R100,000 to the best start-ups in the pitching competition that will take place during the workshop.
According to statistics, the global information technology market grew from US $8,179.48 billion in 2022 to US $8,852.41 billion in 2023 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.2%. It is therefore considered as a sector that is growing fast and has a lot of potentials.
DSTI’s director general, Xavier Estico, said the programme came at an opportune time as the organisation was starting to implement its first Business, Technology and Innovation (BTI) incubator programme to support start-ups all the way through from pre-incubation to commercialization.
“As a small island developing state with a narrow-based economy, we have learned the hard way through the Covid-19 pandemic experience that we have no other choice than to diversify our economy in order to build resilience in the face of uncertainties and shocks,” he said.
The workshop is being facilitated by three representatives from ITC and their associate programme officer, Cathy Sall, said the main objective is to capacitate self start-ups so that they can do business in the United Kingdom.
“The training will be focusing on investment readiness and also how to grow in this particular market,” she explained.
For her part, Patricia Russ, start-up and ITC expert, said that this was the second training being held in Seychelles; the first held three weeks ago was a short training programme on ‘Business Model Canvas’.
“This time around we will be focusing on Internationalization and fund raising; this training basically serves to prepare entrepreneurs fot internationalization and also to pitch and successfully raise investor money, outside capital,” she said.
At the end of the training, the 15 participants will compete in a pitching competition in front of a panel of judges whereby 5 of them will be selected to receive the grant. Five tech start-ups will also be sponsored a business trip to the United Kingdom at the end of the month, to meet with potential clients and partners.
Source: Seychelles Nation