Entrepreneur Coombs says Seatrade provided an eye-opening experience
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Entrepreneur Coombs says Seatrade provided an eye-opening experience

L to R: Anastacio Baker, Crystal Coombs, Ife Badejo, and Benjamin Ortega. L to R: Anastacio Baker, Crystal Coombs, Ife Badejo, and Benjamin Ortega.

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) – The overall winner Crystal Coombs of Cocomoods Concepts of the St. Maarten Chamber of Commerce & Industry (COCI) ‘Business Pitch to Seatrade’ who was one of three businesses selected to attend SeatradeCruiseGlobal Conference & Expo, says the aforementioned was an eye-opening experience.

SeatradeCruiseGlobal is the cruise industry’s most significant worldwide event that presents the opportunity to promote the island and the business community. The conference attracted approximately 11,000 attendees.

Cocomoods Concepts of Crystal Coombs was created September 1, 2018. “My journey to the Global Sea Trade in Miami was a wonderful experience! The entire St. Maarten team made me feel so at home. It was very well organized and executed. I would like to thank the Chamber of Commerce for the opportunity to visit the Global Sea Trade in Miami.

“I have had the opportunity to promote St. Maarten, meet fellow representatives and network with businesses from all over the world including St. Maarten. There were sessions and workshops we could follow to gain experience and knowledge. Taste the cuisine from different countries and islands and also learn about their cultures.

“It was very eye opening to see the corporate world from a different perspective. Outside of the trade there was also a lot of opportunity to network and promote your business. I feel this was an awesome idea to include the businesses of the island.

“There was diversity; The Tourist Bureau, The Harbour (Port St. Maarten), Chamber of Commerce and local businesses with different aspects that could represent St. Maarten in different ways. A great learning experience and a great push into the deep.

“I hope there will be more opportunities for entrepreneurs like this in the future. This is the experience we are waiting for but sometimes it doesn’t arrive unless you can afford to get there yourself. Sometimes it’s the support we need from our own to push us further.

“It’s nice to get feedback, advice, ideas from people you don’t know. It’s definitely a step to take. Definitely something to invest in for the following year,” Crystal Coombs stated.

SeatradeCruiseGlobal was held from April 8-11 at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

COCI Executive Director Anastacio Baker explained that the ‘Business Pitch to Seatrade’ was part of the Board of Directors initiative in giving back to the business community as part of the Chambers 40th 2019 anniversary celebration in stimulating business activity and innovation in a challenging economic environment post-Irma/Maria.

President of the COCI Board Benjamin Ortega, said the 40th anniversary of the Chambers existence demanded a new approach in doing business and the initiative of ‘inclusion’ was born looking at the next 40-years and into the future where Sint Maarten’s business community is concerned in providing innovative ways and means of promoting the economy of the island.

The two other winners of the COCI ‘Business Pitch to Seatrade’ were VooDoo Entertainment, headed by General Manager Paula Daal-Dono and Yoda Guy Movie Museum Foundation headed by Director Nick Maley.

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