UTC launches 2nd Scale Up TT cohort

The content originally appeared on: News Americas Now

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

UTC executive director Nigel Edwars. FILE PHOTO –

THE Ministry of Trade is partnering with the Unit Trust Corporation (UTC) which has launched its second cohort of Scale Up TT, a programme designed for the expansion and improvement of small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

A UTC media release said, government continues to advocate for growth and business development of SMEs, which have proven a critical pillar of economic transformation.

To accelerate the growth of SMEs, the ministry partnered with the UTC in October to launch the second cohort. The programme, initially introduced in 2021, has strengthened the entrepreneurial ecosystem by supporting SMEs to generate new growth opportunities.

After a successful run in 2021, the second cohort was launched in November and is being rolled out with participants representing 14 businesses from varying sectors including manufacturing, distribution, information and communications technology, fashion, consultancy, printing and publishing, and medical services.

The overarching goal is to accelerate growth in revenue, exports and employment of participating SMEs, the release said.

A few months after completion of the first Scale Up TT, all participating companies experienced growth, with one company reporting an 80 per cent improvement in exports. Collectively, businesses entered 12 new markets and over 20 new jobs were generated, primarily in high-skill areas, all over approximately six months from the start of the cohort.

Minister Paula Gopee-Scoon said, “It is this success, coupled with the need to ensure widespread growth is achieved by as many firms as possible, which has underpinned this ministry’s commitment to collaborate with the UTC to execute cohort two of this highly recognised programme.”

For the UTC, its involvement in Scale Up TT aligns with the corporation’s efforts to encourage SMEs to be firmly planted in the country’s business landscape through the expansion of revenue, export and employment.

Nigel Edwards, UTC’s executive director said, “We value the process of developing strong partnerships and communities, and our business is fundamentally built upon partnerships, collaboration and inclusiveness.

“When I look at the present collective and those that went before, what I see is the kernel of sustainable economic growth that will inspire entrepreneurs and business owners throughout TT.”

Cohort Two began in October and will culminate at the end of February. During these five months, 14 participating firms would have benefited from expert training and guidance from the leadership team.

This will equip them with the necessary tools and skills to scale up and boost their businesses resulting in tangible deliverables in the form of increased revenue, employment and exports.