Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What is the Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship – Caribbean?
The Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship – Caribbean (BCoEC) is a non-profit organization that provides support for Caribbean entrepreneurs who are poised for growth. Launched by Sir Richard Branson in 2011, we assist entrepreneurs to launch or scale their businesses for long-term growth & success. For more details on what we offer, click HERE.
Q: What’s the difference between the Branson Centre Caribbean Online virtual training programme and the Official Entrepreneur programme?
Branson Centre Caribbean Online is the free virtual tool open to all entrepreneurs in the Caribbean islands where BCoEC operates who wish to use it to write a condensed business plan which is known as the Business Pitch Deck. If an entrepreneur wishes to enter BCoEC’s Official Entrepreneur programme, then the Business Pitch Deck along with a Business Pitch Video is submitted to BCoEC for evaluation when the training period for the virtual platform closes. The applicant must also pay a USD60.00 review fee. If the Business Pitch Deck makes the standard pass mark of 70%, the entrepreneur is invited into the Official Entrepreneur programme and is eligible to receive entrepreneurial/business support for a 1-year period.
Q: How long is each online training period?
Each online training period is 10-12 weeks long depending on where it falls in the annual calendar.
Q: How much does it cost to use the virtual training platform?
There is no cost to use the virtual training platform. However, you must be a resident in one of the islands where BCoEC operates. We consider a resident to be someone who has a business operating in that country and 70% of the staff that work for the country reside in that country.
Q: Do I have to visit the Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship – Caribbean location in Montego Bay, Jamaica to use the virtual training platform?
No. The virtual training is done online. However, during the 3 months of training your physical presence will be required at an orientation event. There are also drop in days where our coaches are available to answer questions in person, however attendance to drop-in days are not mandatory
Q: What do I receive at the end of the training on Branson Centre Caribbean Online?
At that point, if you’ve put in the hardwork needed to complete your Business Pitch Deck, then you will have a strategic document that can be used to attract investors and potential partners. We do not provide any certificates or marks of approval for the Business Pitch Deck. However, if you apply to be a Branson Centre Official Entrepreneur and you meet our minimum standard, then you gain access to all of our support services, including ability to access the Branson Centre Official Entrepreneur logo.
Q: Am I automatically accepted as a Branson Centre Official Entrepreneur once I complete training on Branson Centre Caribbean Online?
No. Your Business Pitch Deck must be submitted to BCoEC for evaluation first, as per the guidelines listed above. If it makes the pass mark of 70%, then you become a part of the family.
Q: Are there any charges to participate in the Official Entrepreneur programme?
There is a minimal admin fee, which is really just a show of commitment by you. The cost to have your Business Pitch Deck evaluated is US$60.00. If your Business Pitch Deck is given the pass mark of 70% or more you will be accepted into the Official Entrepreneur programme, and pay no additional charges for the remainder of that calendar year. If you want to continue participating in the programme in the following year, then you pay the annual feel of US$75.00 in January. Thereafter, you pay an annual fee every January.
Q: Can I forgo the Branson Centre Caribbean Online training and submit my business plan for evaluation if I already wrote one and I’m already an operational entrepreneur?
This is not advised. All entrepreneurs interested in the Official Entrepreneur programme must write a Business Pitch Deck based on the guidelines and tools provided on our virtual training platform.
Q: Can more than one person at the same company participate in the Official Entrepreneur programme and represent the same company?
We definitely want the learning to be spread throughout your company, so more than one person can go through the training. Branson Centre Caribbean Online is free and open to anyone in the islands where we operate. However, only one person per company can represent that company as an Official Entrepreneur. Therefore, you will have to decide who from your company will participate in the programme and submit their Business Pitch Deck for review.