Local and regional entrepreneurs will have a rare opportunity to showcase their products to international buyers as well as shoppers from the Caribbean when the new CARIFESTA Grand Market and Buyer’s Shopping Mall opens at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre (LESC) on August 17.
Described by coordinator Andre Hoyte as a ‘Shopping Mall’, the traditional grand market of CARIFESTA has been redesigned specifically to attract retail buyers. In addition to those from the region, buyers have been invited from the USA, Canada, Columbia and Europe.
The Caribbean Export Development Agency has also invited a number of buyers who will be seeking Caribbean products for world markets.
LESC will house some 280 booths during the ten-day festival that will feature craft, fine art, fashion, food, music, festivals, home décor, literature and more. The market will comprise an outdoor and indoor grand market and shopping mall as well as a film hub at the Sheraton Centre and Olympus Theatres not far away.
“We intend to expose Caribbean products and services in all creative categories during this market place for the cultural industries – from home craft furnishings and gifts, to Caribbean festivals and events, to items of fashion and apparel to all aspects of food and beverage,” explained festival director Andrea Wells.
“At the end of this, we want to show that Caribbean products can hold their own in the international marketplaces.”
Along with the buyers, the public is invited to the eight-day showcase to see and purchase items and be entertained by the performances from the two stages at the LESC. A full Caribbean menu featuring breakfast, lunch and dinner will be available for purchase in the Caribbean Food Court where meals will be freshly prepared onsite.
The Grand Market and Buyers Shopping Mall will feature a number of innovations including televised home shopping via CARIFESTA TV, a department store layout and an electronic and printed buyers’ booklet. Daily fashion shows will also be featured, in order to highlight the many regional designers coming for the festival.
Food tastings, meet the writer sessions, writers’ sales and open mike sessions, as well as the Country Night Stages will all form part of the overall experience for patrons.
Interested entrepreneurs are invited to register anytime before April 30, 2017.