Small businesses in Grand Bahama will have the opportunity to meet with three companies at the Business to Business Expo on Thursday, April 26, to learn of existing and upcoming business opportunities. The event is being held at Pelican Bay Hotel beginning at 9 am. During a press conference on Wednesday, Minister of State for Grand Bahama in the Office of the Prime Minister, Senator the Hon. J. Kwasi Thompson said the venture is in partnership with the Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce and will feature Statoil, an oil storage facility; PharmaChem Technologies, a fine chemical contract manufacturing company; and Quality Services Ltd., the largest steel fabrication company in The Bahamas. “The objective of the Business to the Business initiative is to generate much needed economic growth in our local economy here in Grand Bahama while providing our anchor companies with local options for some of the goods and services currently imported. We are confident that with the right collaboration, many of the goods and services now imported can instead be delivered by Grand Bahamian businesses of a comparative quality and with availability and reliability required for their operations.”
He said the initiative was originally launched in September 2017 with the Grand Bahama Shipyard and Buckeye being the focused businesses. They provided information on their requirements and shared opportunities available for businesses to get contracts, purchasing or provide services for the companies. This year’s highlighted companies are all in some form of expansion and will need varying degrees of services offered. Statoil is presently undergoing a $20M repair project to their facility and during their presentation, those interested will learn of their vetting and procurement process and small businesses that provide maintenance services, fabrication, and welding services and offer electrical and chemical supplies, IT, safety and security equipment and supplies will all benefit. PharmaChem recently announced their $180M expansion and will share opportunities available to subcontractors, skilled and semi-skilled workers and the requirements to benefit from the project. Quality Services Ltd., will also speak to local contractors.
The event, continued the Minister, will provide businesses with the opportunity to have on the spot, one on one meetings. “The Government is focused on small business development and providing opportunities for SMAs. This initiative directly accesses opportunities already existing in Grand Bahama. “We already have a number of large businesses in Grand Bahama who spend millions of dollars outside of The Bahamas. This is an opportunity to match small businesses with these larger businesses so that we can ensure we can do our best to have more of that spending done in Grand Bahama and more of that spending done with local businesses.” It is also an opportune time for participants of Cohort 3 of the Government’s Small and Micro Enterprise Grant Programme who have completed the business readiness programme and are in a position to seek new business ventures and build key business relationships. “We are also confident this initiative can deliver tangible short-term results with many opportunities for further sustained development and diversification of our local Grand Bahama economy.”
Grand Bahama Chamber of Commerce president, Nick Holding said that the Chamber is pleased to be involved with this initiative and thinks there is a lot of potentials for businesses to make money. “There are tens of millions of dollars that are currently being spent off the island that may be available to either existing or new Bahamian businesses.” He encouraged people to come out and meet with the representatives and explore the opportunities to develop and grow or establish a new business on the island. Statoil representative, Tyrone Perpall, said his company is all about safety. He said the company is pleased to participate in the Expo and provide opportunities for local businesses. Minister Thompson invited all small businesses and those who wish to present their services to these companies to be a part of the Expo.