Richard Branson Relaunches Entrepreneurship Center in Jamaica


Caribbean Journal reports on Richard Branson’s recently trip to Jamaica to celebrate the relaunch and relocation of the Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship to the center to Kingston, to be closer to the growing “innovation ecosystem” in Jamaica’s capital. The Center was previously initiated in Montego Bay in 2011. According to the article, Branson says, “The spirit and energy of the Caribbean is like nowhere else in the world – this place buzzes with entrepreneurial spirit.” Here are excerpts:

The non-profit Virgin Unite, founded in 2004, aims to “unite people and entrepreneurial ideas to create opportunities for a better world.”

Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness also attended the launch, and discussed with Branson the state of the current business landscape and ways to raise the country’s GDP and support new business ventures of the future. [. . .]

Branson called for global community action and for all sectors to work together and support each other. “Entrepreneurs can solve some of Jamaica’s, and the world’s biggest problems. We must find bright and innovative thinkers, give them the support, encouragement and the community they need to build strong and socially responsible businesses,” he said.

It’s also another major boost for the city of Kingston, which has been seeing renewed investment, particularly in the tourism sector, with a new Courtyard Marriott and a major planned $50 million AC Hotel project.

For full article, see

2 thoughts on “Richard Branson Relaunches Entrepreneurship Center in Jamaica

  1. In Praise of “old” Entreprenuers
    So….I read, recently about how we need to support young entrepreneurs in our midst……and I keep wondering “What about us old entrepreneurs?”
    If you were looking for an employees to run your business…who would you choose? The young enthusiastic person who has not experienced life in the business world as yet with all it’s highs and lows, or even begun to deal with the numerous disappointments along the way …..or would you choose the older person who has gone thru the realities of life in the business world, has had a few screw ups and successes and said “ Not making those mistakes again!!” maintained a focus and got on trying to deliver the next dream? I know who I would choose
    The reality is that entrepreneurs only learn from life experiences, many times more about what doesn’t work than what does work. Entrepreneurs are not people who go to a University, study like mad and after 3 or 4 years, end up with a degree and Bingo!! They morph into an entrepreneur.
    This gift is in your DNA…you are born with it and you continue to learn how to be a successful one until the day you depart this planet called Earth. It somehow never deserts you, but you can bask in the sunshine of success one day and sink to the storms of failure the next. This exercise is all about learning to be a successful entrepreneur.
    Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple and one of the truly great entrepreneurs of the modern age referred to entrepreneurs as “The Crazy Ones” in his famous poem “Here’s to the Crazy Ones” because entrepreneurs are crazy enough to think that they can change the world an they usually do.
    No one can be taught how to be an entrepreneur. How do you teach someone to accept rejection as a way of life against the few times that you will taste success?
    I really cannot fathom why the business world assumes that entrepreneurs disappear into the woodwork, when they reach middle age. I am reaching the advanced age of 4 score years and have just as much enthusiasm for ideas that I conjure up now on a daily basis, and additionally, as to what is a viable idea and will fly as opposed to what is a non-starter.
    The reality of life in the business world today is that you not only have to think up the next dream product, you have to show that it’s workable, saleable and game changing.
    Few young entrepreneurs understand the science of selling an idea to the world.
    So…the question that needs to be answered is…..why is it that in Jamaica when we have so many older folks living here, (many of them entrepreneurs), with a vast amount of knowledge to offer, aren’t we tapping into this mother lode of experience?
    Only the business community can answer that.
    In the meantime, I along with many other “old” entrepreneurs will twiddle our thumbs and watch while the process of the learning curve in business for the young entrepreneur, repeats itself over and over.
    Wake up Jamaica!! You just may be missing a trick!!
    Let me just leave with one word of advice for all the potential young entrepreneurs out there………it is better to own 2% of something than 98% of nothing.
    And now I am off to work on my next game changing idea…..let’s see…it’s all about a box that allows you to connect to and talk to people all over the world. I think I’ll call it …a computer!!!!! (I wonder if it will “fly”????).

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