Mentorship for Innovation and Entrepreneurship Programme’ (MIEP)

We connect entrepreneurs and SMEs with local and international industry experts
The Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ), through its Jamaica Venture Capital Programme (JVCapital) launched the pilot Mentors for Innovation & Entrepreneurship Programme (MIEP), in 2020, to support high-growth potential research/technology-based start-ups with innovative products or services. The pilot saw twelve start-up entrepreneurs connected with local and international industry experts as well as trained business advisors who assisted them in reducing or removing specific development hurdles hindering the growth of their companies. The programme was transferred to the BIGEE project effective January 2021

MIEP Goals

The goal of the MIEP was to fill one of the market gaps identified in the ecosystem- a lack of technical/business mentorship for entrepreneurs leading high growth potential start-ups and scale-ups. The Programme design was based on the following ten hypotheses, resulting from the findings of the primary and secondary research conducted into local and international business and personal mentorship programmes:
  • The composition of the Council (local or international high net worth or highly-networked individuals with a background in start-up development) will help to expose the companies to non-local investors and their networks

  • International investors would be willing to provide high-level mentorship of Jamaican start-ups and expose them to members of their networks

  • Local and international technical experts would be willing to work as volunteers to start-ups in Jamaica to help reduce major development issues hindering these companies’ growth; 

  • High-quality business mentorship and advising would result in improvements in the revenue and growth of local start-up companies;

  • The injection of business advisors as accountability partners in the mentor-mentee relationship would improve mentorship outcomes;

  • The injection of small amounts of targeted funds to execute the mentorship advice given would improve goal achievement;


  • The impact of small amount of grant funds would exponentially increase company growth if the money was kept in escrow by a third party;

  • The impact of small amount of grant funds would exponentially increase company growth if the money was earmarked for a pre-set company business or product development goal;

  • The use of structured business advising platform and the expectation of monitoring and evaluation would improve the quality of business advising and increase the frequency and quality of advisor-client meetings;

  • The use of a structured business advising platform would improve the satisfaction levels of entrepreneurs with business advisors;



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