The Dominica Manufacturers Association (DMA) officially launched its make something to sell competition on Friday July 9 in partnership with the Ministry of Trade, Commerce, Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Business & Export Development, Junior Achievement Dominica, Dominica Youth Business Trust (DYBT), National Development Foundation of Dominica (NDFD), Dominica Bureau of Standards (DBOS) and Dominica Association of Industry and Commerce (DAIC).

The make something to sell competition is an initiative of the DMA with the objective to facilitate effective growth and development of young manufacturers on the Dominican market.

“The objective of the competition is to facilitate the effective growth and development of young manufacturers in the Dominican market. Often times young or new manufacturers encounter challenges when trying to start of their ventures. They may not be aware of the path of list resistance and so this activity is geared at guiding them through that path, ensuring that their products meet market requirements before they are put out on the shelf,” stated Secretary of the Dominica Manufacturers Association, Mrs. Naomi Bannis-Sampson.

According to Mrs.  Bannis-Sampson, the competition is a two-part event consisting of virtual five training sessions centered around the theme “Getting Ready For The Market”, and a one-day competitive event under the theme “Supporting Local” where candidates will be expected to display and sell their products and prepare to pitch their business idea to potential investors.

The five training sessions held from July 26th to 30th, 2021 will enhance the readiness of manufacturers for local, regional, and international markets.

“The competition is a two-part event consisting of 5 virtual training sessions centered around the theme ‘Getting Ready for the Market.’ The training will ake place from July 26 to July 30 2021 and the following topics will be covered: Good Manufacturing Practices, Product Development, Product Labelling Requirements, Product Costing and Pricing and Marketing. So we felt that these fie areas are key when entering the market in general,” she explained.

The competitive event, to be held on August 20th, 2021, will be geared at providing local manufacturers, particularly those who have successfully completed the training, with an opportunity to showcase what they have learnt, display, and sell their products, and to pitch their businesses to potential investors.

“Competitors will be required to display and sell if possible heir prototypes or their products. The competitors will be judged in two categories: (i) You have the display of your products and participants will be judged on improvements made to their prototype or their product which is based on the training they would have received  in the five days; whether their products are innovative; the sustainability of the products, and originality or creativity. The second part of the competition for that day is the pitching,” Mrs. Bannis-Sampson added.

Executive Assistant of the Dominica Association of Industry and commerce (DAIC) Mr. Daniel Panthier noted the criteria by which competitors will be judged during the competition.

“The criteria is as follows: Problems, Customer and Market.  The market has strong potential and can clearly be identified. Unique value proposition and solution. The solution is innovative, creates an impact and product or service has a competitive advantage over existing alternatives. The marketing and growth strategy- The entrepreneur has a convincing plan for how to acquire customers and how to price, promote, sell and support their product or service. They understand what channels or partners will be critical to their success. Qualities of the entrepreneur and his or her team- The entrepreneur and their team has the necessary experience and the capabilities to be successful. They demonstrate relevant knowledge of the market as well as the passion, creativity, initiative and resourcefulness,” Mr. Panthier stated.

Mr. Panthier commended the DMA on the initiative and assured the continued commitment of the DAIC to the event’s success.

While all manufacturers are encouraged to register for the virtual training sessions, only manufacturers who are operational for three years or less can register for the competition.