Charles Pashley: Business Champions awards will encourage SMEs

TT Chamber president Charles Pashley addresses guests at the Champions of Business media launch, on July 19. - Angelo Marcelle
TT Chamber president Charles Pashley addresses guests at the Champions of Business media launch, on July 19. - Angelo Marcelle

President of the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce Charles Pashley said the awards of the Champions of Business will not only recognise the achievements of businesses, especially during covid19, but will also encourage emerging SMEs to follow the same path as recipients.

“The Champion of Business really represents entrepreneurs who started off in the SME community many, many years ago and toiled, not to be recognised by the Chamber but because of that passion to do better – that passion to make something of themselves,” Pashley said at the launch of the event, held at the Chamber’s headquarters in Westmoorings on Tuesday.

The Chamber introduced Champions of Business in 2005 as the Business Hall of Fame. Now in its 17th year, there are six categories – the business hall of fame, the green agenda award, the TT owned company of the year, breakthrough entrepreneur of the year, the entrepreneurship award and the business technology award – which Pashley said are targeted to highlight businesses responding to specific issues in the business community.

“We believe that the method in which we’ve structured the awards allows businesses to focus on what is critical for the economy. Even though businesses will win an award and it goes up on a shelf, it would show that the businesses’ contribution to the economy is significant.”

He said whether these businesses are members of the Chamber or not, they should be recognised for its achievements.

In this 2019 file photo, Nicholas Lok Jack, group CEO/deputy chairman of Associated Brands Industries receives the Internationally Known…TT Owned Company of the Year award from First Citizens Group CEO, Karen Darbasie, at the TT Chamber’s Champions of Business awards ceremony. - FILE PHOTO/ANGELO MARCELLE

“At the end of the day what is right for businesses is what is ultimately right for us as well, whether you are a member of the Chamber or not,” he said.

“Ultimately all of those awards redound to the benefit of TT.”

He thanked corporate sponsors Eximbank, National Gas Company, bmobile, the Unit Trust Corporation and Unicomer for their support and foresight.

Kiran Maharaj, senior vice president of the Chamber said nominees for the awards do not necessarily have to be one of the 650 members of the Chamber.

“The goal of the programme is to recognise the role and contribution of outstanding businesses to the nation and the economy; to encourage enterprises to continue developing and elevating their business; to motivate and inspire home-grown businesses to aim for excellence in their products and services; to encourage local businesses to showcase their products and services to the world and to celebrate and highlight the achievements of local enterprises that have contributed to the environment and roles of the community.”


"Charles Pashley: Business Champions awards will encourage SMEs"

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