Free advice available to small businesses

The Cayman Islands Centre for Business Development will work with the University College of the Cayman Islands through the Student Consulting Programme to provide free and confidential advice to small businesses.

The 10-week programme, which begins next month, will partner small businesses with upper-level business students at UCCI. The students will provide advice to business owners to solve a particular problem or reach a specific goal.

CICBD director Althea West-Myers said in a press release that the programme, which has been running for more than 10 years through the Ministry of Commerce, is part of the centre’s efforts to support small businesses.

“The centre was set up to improve small business viability through increased access to finance but also for training, business counselling and advice,” she said.

Minister of Commerce Joey Hew said ensuring that entrepreneurs and small business owners receive the support they need is one of the most important priorities for his ministry.

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“Government, through the CICBD, has so far implemented a number of measures for micro and small businesses valued over $14 million. This package included grants, loans, technical assistance and training targeted at assisting our entrepreneurs,” he said in the release. “This programme with UCCI is just another way in which we continue to encourage and develop businesses.”

UCCI programme coordinator Annette Murphy said that the programme will benefit all parties. “The reason this programme has been so successful is that everyone involved takes away something of value. Business owners will gain free advice and move their enterprises forward, and the students will put their knowledge into practice,” she said.

To participate in the Student Consulting Programme, businesses must be an established business; have a clear problem or seek improvements in a specific area such as accounting or marketing; and be willing to spend the time and effort with the student team.

The deadline to apply is Friday, 29 Jan. Interested business owners should email [email protected] for further information.

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