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BDO's Floyd Patterson, left,  confer with bank officials after the formal presentations.
BDO’s Floyd Patterson, left, confer with bank officials after the formal presentations.
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Small business owners in St. Vincent and the Grenadines were lead on a “Journey to Success” at the recent launch of the inaugural CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank Business Banking Roadshow.

The business owners were attending a collaboration with international accounting firm BDO, where partner Floyd Patterson delivered an intensive presentation entitled “Accounting Advice for Better Business Management”.

The session dealt with such topics as the statutory requirements of record keeping, the importance to good financial management, access to capital and accounting systems and software. Patterson also offered some useful hints to participants about reinvesting in their businesses, the merits of conducting annual financial reviews, and the importance of the Owners/Directors separating their personal and business affairs so as to allow for objective assessment in the pursuit of growth.

The interactive session, which was held at Flow Wine Bar and Restaurant in Kingstown, also saw Business Banker. Retail, Wealth and Small Business Shelly-Ann Samuel highlight the many new products which have been developed by the Bank with the specific needs of small and medium sized business in mind, including the Merchant Services Overdraft, bizline Credit Card and the Business Banking line of Credit. She further clarified that the area was renamed Business as the Bank sought to enhance and recognise the entrepreneurial spirit of these businesses.

Samuel’s presentation described the research that was undertaken to ascertain what it was that business owners required of their bank, and with that in mind CIBC FirstCaribbean set out to develop both product and advisory solutions to meet the needs of the business person. She went on to detail a variety of products that address a business’ transactional and cash management requirements such as Internet Banking, Online Wire Transfers, and Merchant Services and Foreign Exchange solutions.

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A number of thoughtful questions followed both presentations from the business owners who were highly complementary and expressed appreciation for the session. The formal part of the event was followed by a mix and mingle, where the queries continued one-on-one with Relationship Managers, other bank officials, and the local partners of BDO.

This was the first in a series of sessions, intended to bring advice and expertise to CIBC FirstCaribbean business owners and to highlight the progressive changes to Business Banking in recent months. The Roadshow is being rolled out across the region by CIBC FirstCaribbean and BDO. The two organisations already share footprint in nine markets in the region. Roadshows have already been held in Barbados and St. Maarten.