ST LUCIAN TECH START-UP WINS CTEP REGIONAL FINALS
Dev758 Solutions, the tech start-up behind LEAP Marketplace, emerged as one of two Idea Stage winners of the Caribbean Tech Entrepreneurs Programme (CTEP) Regional Competition finals in June 2017. Dev758 Solutions was one of over forty finalists who competed for more than USD 40,000 in cash, direct access to The Branson Centre in Jamaica and other prizes.
Leap Marketplace is a mobile and web application which serves as a platform for local craftsmen, artisans, fashion designers and hobbyists to market and sell their products with added business support including payment processing and delivery services.
“It was an extremely challenging but rewarding experience,” said Jason Cassius, co-founder, Dev758 Solutions. “In the end, I am a better entrepreneur and my idea is one step closer to fruition.”
Cassius was one of nearly one hundred persons from various Caribbean islands enrolled in the Programme. CTEP is organized by Caribbean Climate Innovation Center, which is funded by The World Bank. The competition aspect of the initiative was divided into three stages of business: Idea Stage, Validation Stage and Revenue Stage.
The entrepreneurs had all participated in the three-month long programme. Each course was facilitated by business and tech industry leaders throughout the Caribbean and the rest of the world. The participants were required to create business plans, in the form of a pitch, develop early stage prototypes and produce a pitch video for their idea or product.
Cassius impressed the judges from the early stages with his mentor sessions, assignments and the level of innovation in his pitch deck (business proposal). For his efforts, he is one of six winners (two in each stage) who will each receive a grant to continue with their tech start up.