Jamaica, London, UK, True Blue Coffee, True Blue JM, Jamaican Coffee, Coffee, Media, Blog, 13thStreetPromotions, 13thStreetPromo, Lauren Le Franc, Caribbean, City University Of London, Entrepreneur, Jamaican,

Jamaican Entrepreneur Wins Award From City University of London


Lauren Le Franc, a Jamaican Entrepreneur residing in
the United Kingdom, has won a Graduate Award from City University of London to expand her already established Coffee Business, J.A. Island Roasters. As part of her award package, Le Franc also secured a location for her business at the University’s Cass Business School, and is looking at commencing operations in the upcoming weeks.

Le Franc, a qualified Barrister of England and Wales who first set up the company in Jamaica in 2011 while completing her legal education, has been focused on selling roasted Coffee through J.A. Island Roasters under the brand, True Blue 100% Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. With this award she is looking forward to importing organic and non-organic Jamaican green beans to the U.K. from the world-famous Blue Mountains.
She said the award package also covers operational costs, and comes with mentorship and support from the University. “I’m elated to have such an amazing opportunity to expand my business and to take brand Jamaica a step further into the spotlight,” shared Le Franc. “I already have a Distributor who has been contracted to take all my organic Coffee, I look forward to continuing the work with the Coffee Industry Board on this venture and I am heading into business with an optimistic mindset and a winning attitude.”

In 2014, J.A. Island Roasters received approval from the Certification of Environmental Standards (CERES) – an International organization which offers certification for organic farming and food processing, to maintain good practices in the Food Industry. Then, she received approval from the Coffee Industry Board to export organic certified Jamaican Blue Mountain green bean Coffee. Although she found favour for her roasted Coffee in the Asian market, she was in search of additional opportunities for development when she came across the City University of London’s Entrepreneur Graduate Scheme Competition in 2016, and her big break came when she decided to participate.

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Jamaica, Indiana, Dancehall, Reggae, Afrobeat, Music, Blog, 13thStreetPromotions, 13thStreetPromo, D-Feezy, VPAL Music, VPAL, Press Release, Caribbean, May D, Gas Station,

US Based Dancehall Artist @D_FeezyMusic Signs Deal With @VPALMusic, Drops New Single.


Indiana based Reggae/Dancehall Recording Artist D-Feezy has recently signed a deal with US based Distribution Label, VPAL Music. The deal was signed on September 18, and lasts for 3 years. The announcement comes fresh off the heels of the release of his “Money Me A Pree” Music Video, and his performance at the Indiana Reggae Jam Music Festival this past Summer. “It’s a great feeling to get this deal with VP/VPAL. This way I can get more of my music out there in the world, and continue to wave the Jamaican flag in Indianapolis as the culture is very much alive there“, shared an enthusiastic D-Feezy.

The Artist has also shared that fans can expect the official release of his latest single, “Gas Station” with Afrobeat/AfroPop Recording Artist, May D on October 13 through VP/VPAL, but can be heard earlier via Apple Music, Spotify, and all other major Streaming outlets. The single was produced by BigBeats Music, while the Music Video for the single was recently released and shot by HD Genesis. “The single is another example of two Artists from different Nations and cultures having a mutual love for the Music, and making things happen! May D is from Nigeria and he has been doing his thing over there, so I felt we could join forces and drop something for the ladies! The Music Video has been doing well since its release, and we’re grateful for that” D-Feezy shared. D-Feezy is also working on his debut Album which should see a December 2017 release and its announcement very soon.

D-Feezy (born Steven Howard Muttler), hails from West Kingston, and has been active as a Recording Artist since migrating to the United States in the early 2000s. Releasing various Mixtapes over the years, he has developed a following in Indiana, and has shared the stage with the likes of Elephant Man, Future Fambo, Serani, Etana, and Sizzla.

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Dancehall Artist Sol Weatherman Goes Viral, Promotes “Handcart”


With several controversies surrounding Dancehall music videos, upcoming Dancehall Artist Sol Weatherman is now victim to a candid video gone viral. The video shows the Artist singing his recent single, “Handcart”, with what appears to be an M-16 Rifle in hand. More recently, another video surfaced with the Artist riding a donkey at the popular Street Dance “Wappingz Thursday”.

“Handcart” was produced by Krayv and Jay Crazie Records on the “Car Tire Riddim”, and is described by Sol Weatherman as a “Hustler’s Anthem”. “The video was simply me chilling in my community and during that someone recorded the video and posted it online. I don’t encourage violence, “Handcart” is a song for the Hustlers and hard working people, it is not a violent song”. When asked about the riding on the Donkey, Sol
added, “I believe in promoting my single to the fullest so the video was just another way to market the single for me”.

“Handcart” has been garnering much attention from the streets since its release. Sol added, “In many of the Street Dances you can witness girls pushing Handcarts and dancing. People all over the world love the gimmicks that come with the song, and I am grateful for that”. Sol Weatherman hails from Cockburn Gardens in Kingston, and is known for the singles, “Weatherman”, “Feel So Good”, and “Whine” to name a few. You can find him on Instagram at @SolWeatherman, and WeathermanSol on Facebook.

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@RedStripe Promotes Road Safety At “Bikers Roll Out”!


In a move to expand the scope of its Drink Right initiative, Red Stripe hosted a ‘Bikers Roll Out’, geared at encouraging motorcyclists to not only drink responsibly, but also drive responsibly on the nation’s roads.

The snarling sound of motorcycles could be heard along the Spanish Town Road as close to 100 bikers made their way through the congested Friday afternoon traffic onto Red Stripe’s headquarters. The informative and entertaining programme featured presentations from key partners from the Traffic Division of the Jamaica Constabulary Force; the Road Safety Unit in the Ministry of Transport and Mining, and helmet supplier Superior Parts Limited.

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Stacy-Ann Smith, Brand and Corporate Public Relations Manager, Red Stripe in conversation with Acting Senior Superintendent of Police Courtney Coubrie of the Traffic Division. As part of Red Stripe’s Drink Right campaign which is geared towards promoting road safety and encouraging consumers to drink responsibly, the company hosted motorcyclists for an exciting and informative Bikers Roll Out session recently.

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The WINC Acceleration Program For Women Entrepreneurs Is Now Open For 2017!


Building on the success of its 2016 Acceleration Program, the Women Innovators Network in the Caribbean (WINC) is launching its 2017 program.

The eight-month peer learning program which begins in November 2017 is designed to help growth-oriented women entrepreneurs innovate within their businesses, and have the self-confidence to make the necessary changes to improve their competitiveness and boost their growth.  Participants will benefit from a suite of services including business and personal development, one-to-one mentoring, technical workshops and motivational sessions.

The initiative is part of the Entrepreneurship Program for Innovation in the Caribbean (EPIC), funded by the government of Canada and implemented by the World Bank’s infoDev program for innovation and entrepreneurship. It will be delivered by infoDev-trained and certified facilitators in nine countries: Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Kitts & Nevis, and Trinidad & Tobago.

InfoDev certified facilitator, A. Cecile Watson, a senior business leader and also an entrepreneur, will lead WINC AP Jamaica for the second time around.  She said:  “The returns, impact and value created by the WINC Acceleration Program may never be totally grasped or measured.  During 2016, we had 11 women entrepreneurs in the Jamaica program who today are still learning, developing and growing together.  We are now a community of women entrepreneurs who are still celebrating our successes, hacking through our challenges, sharing our networks, doing business together and always looking out for each other.”

The Development Bank of Jamaica has signed on as a key sponsor of the Jamaica program.   Milverton Reynolds, managing director said:  “We’ve hosted and had robust discussions with the women entrepreneur graduates of the first WINCAP cohort and we’ve seen how energized they are by the value that the program continues to create for them.  Two of the awardees of the DBJ IGNITE grant in 2016 were amongst the participants.  So we support and encourage endeavours like these which are directly aligned to our MSME strategy, a key contributor to Jamaica’s economic growth plans.”

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Milverton Reynolds (left) Managing Director, DBJ, Chris Zacca, Former Chairman, DBJ; and A. Cecile Watson (standing, fourth from right) join women entrepreneur graduates for a photo op. The event was part of the Gr8Way Influencer Series which fosters support for the women entrepreneurs by connecting them with key Influencers.

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@RedStripe’s “Project Grow” Gives Helping Hand To Farming Grandfather & Grandson.


When 70-year-old Carlton Fearon was a boy, he had a dream of living on his own farming property in the country. The Bernard Lodge, St. Catherine, native envisioned long, rolling acres of farmland along the countryside with cattle and produce to sustain his family and the neighbouring community.
The father of nine with nine grandchildren, who hails from a large family of arable and pastoral farmers, said, “Mi grow up in agriculture. Mi ah country boy, so mi always waan live pon mi farm wid mi big ole dog dem and mi animals just roaming the farm. Ah dem environment deh mi love. Jus’ me and mi animals and mi food weh mi a grow.”
Fearon realized this dream early and has enjoyed a career in agriculture spanning decades starting from his teenage years. His specialty crop of choice was his beloved sugarcane, though he also grew oranges and tobacco while rearing cattle and pigs to supply the meat-processing industry. In recent years, however, Fearon has faced a number of hardships that he says has caused many farmers to abandon the noble field. Determined to remain in the industry he loves, he has now decided to try his hand at the cassava crop as part of Red Stripe’s Project Grow.
Flagship Agricultural Project
The Jamaican beer company’s flagship agricultural project was launched in 2013 for the purpose of using cassava as the local alternative to importing high-maltose corn syrup for use in its production process. In an effort to further the development of the agriculture sector and give local farmers an opportunity to earn, the 99-year-old company made the decision to utilize the popular crop based on its ease to process while not interfering with the signature beer’s taste and colour.
Business Development Manager for Local Raw Materials at Red Stripe, Dr. Cavell Francis-Rhiney, in speaking about the importance of the programme, said, “Project Grow has many benefits for our local farmers, most importantly, security and consistency within a fluctuating market with Red Stripe as the contracted buyer for a three-year period. It also gives them the opportunity to broaden their expertise as we will provide intensive assistance throughout the growth process.”
Also among these benefits is having access to information from Red Stripe’s farming and growth experts, and the initial provision of a ‘farmer’s kit’ that aids farmers in covering 35 to 40 per cent of the overall production cost. The kit, which is optional, contains planting materials, irrigation equipment and fertilizer for the first year of production.
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