Roundup: for the week ending 5 April 2015

A roundup of ICT/technology news from across the Caribbean region for the period Monday 30 March to Sunday 5 April 2015.

Monday, 30 March 2015

BTVI students schooled in social netiquette

Bahamas – “Think before you post.” That was the simple, yet thought-provoking message Assistant Superintendent of Police, Detective Mark Barrett wanted to ingrain in the minds of students recently… more

Cable Targets Largest ‘New Money’ Raise

Bahamas – The $60 million Bahamian dollar component of Cable Bahamas’ latest preference share issue will be the largest ‘new money’ placement by a private company if fully subscribed, its financial advisor saying there had been “a very positive response” by investors… more

Cybersecurity incidents jump 66% from 2009 to 2014

Bahamas – The human element remains the “weakest link” in cybersecurity for local businesses and requires a more robust suite of security awareness programs for the country’s workforce, according to Deputy Director of Information Technology (IT) for the National Insurance Board (NIB) Dr. Raymond Wells… more

Regulator imposes fine to BTC over service failure

Bahamas – Bahamas’ Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) has fined The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC), part of Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC), for a service failure which affected the firm’s mobile and fixed services during 15 hours on 22 March… more

URCA finds BTC in breach of its licence

Bahamas – On March 20, 2015, the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) issued its Final Determination and Order to the Bahamas Telecommunications Company Ltd. (BTC) regarding BTC’s March 22, 2014 Network Outage… more

Digicel Deploys Wi-Fi Solution at Blue Horizons Garden Resort

Grenada – Guests at the Blue Horizons Garden Resort in Grenada are now experiencing world class Wi-Fi solution thanks to Digicel Business… more

Bitt Secures $1.5 Million To Service The Caribbean’s Underbanked

Regional – Thanks to a $1.5 million seed round, Barbados-based Bitt has launched its latest service, the Bitt Exchange… more

Digicel calls on ECTEL to clarify regulatory approvals process in relation to proposed acquisition of Columbus / Flow by Cable and Wireless

Regional – Digicel today respectfully called upon the Eastern Caribbean Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (‘ECTEL’) to publicly clarify and confirm the  present status of the regulatory approvals process being undertaken by them in conjunction with the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commissions (‘NTRCs’) in relation to the proposed merger between Cable and Wireless Communications (‘CWC’) and FLOW / Columbus Communications Inc. (‘Columbus’); particularly insofar as it relates to Grenada, St. Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines… more

Saint_Lucia flagCARCIP partners with local college to widen Internet access in Saint Lucia

Saint Lucia – The Saint Lucia Ministry of Public Service, Information and Broadcasting is partnering with the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College to conduct a series of surveys, as part of an in-depth analysis of the nation’s urban and rural broadband Internet connectivity gaps… more

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Cable Targeting 20% Revenue Rise Via US

Bahamas – Cable Bahamas believes its newly-acquired US business will generate greater than “20 per cent aggregate” revenue growth for it over the next five years, having won contracts to provide services to 16,600 Florida residential units since the purchases closed… more

CWC-Columbus deal approved in Barbados

Barbados – The Fair Trade Commission (FTC) of Barbados has approved the USD1.85 billion takeover of Columbus International by Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC), while adding certain local conditions to the deal… more

EDITORIAL: Zeroing in on telecoms battle

Barbados – THE DECISION OF the Fair Trading Commission (FTC) to sanction the merger of Cable & Wireless (LIME) and Columbus Communications (Flow) appears to have raised even fewer concerns among Barbadians than the actual announcement by the two companies of their intention earlier this year… more

Channel Overseas wins court appeal on Channel 5

Belize – The Court of Appeal has ruled in favour of Channel Overseas Investments Limited, Katalyst Developments Limited, Thames Ventures Limited, Great Belize Productions Limited and several former directors of Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) in their case against BTL and the Belize Bank over the acquisition and financing of Great Belize Productions, the parent company of Great Belize Television (Channel 5) for more than $10 million… more

Guyana flag (Wikipedia)GT&T starts rollout of 10-times faster Internet

Guyana – Weeks after announcing plans to introduce faster internet for its customers, the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) is on its way to making that promise a reality… more

Flow Wins Awards

Jamaica – COLUMBUS COMMUNICATIONS Jamaica Limited, operator of Flow, has won a major international award. Flow has copped a prestigious Addy award from the American Advertising Federation out of the United States… more

Barbados hosts ICT training programme

Regional – The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) in collaboration with the Organization of American States (OAS) partnered with the Information and Communication Technology (CTIC) for the implementation of a training programme for ICT advisors from 11 Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries (Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, The Bahamas, Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and Haiti) during the period March 23 – 25, 2015 at a face to face workshop in Barbados aimed at improving the competitiveness of firms through access, implementation, and use of ICT in business processes… more

Caribbean Bitcoin exchange startup Bitt secures seed round $1.5m in capital

Regional – Founded in 2013 by Gabriel Abed and Oliver Gale, Bitt is a digital asset exchange, remittance channel, and merchant-processing gateway based in Barbados… more

Board Changes

Regional – Cable & Wireless Communications Plc (“CWC”) today announces the following changes to its Board of Directors which have taken effect immediately following completion of the acquisition of Columbus International Inc. by CWC (the “Acquisition”), as announced earlier today… more

Columbus International Inc. Closes Upon Its Acquisition by CWC

Regional – Columbus International Inc. (“Columbus”) is pleased to announce that it has received the requisite approvals, satisfied all necessary conditions and has closed upon its transaction to be acquired by Cable & Wireless Communications PLC (“CWC”) as previously announced on November 6, 2014… more

Completion of Acquisition of Columbus

Regional – Cable & Wireless Communications Plc (“CWC”) is today pleased to announce the completion of the acquisition of the entire issued share capital of Columbus International Inc. (“Columbus”) by CWC from Clearwater Holdings (Barbados) Limited, CVBI Holdings (Barbados) Inc., Columbus Holding LLC, Brendan Paddick and others, as announced on 6 November 2014 (the “Acquisition”), following satisfaction of all necessary conditions… more

Digicel sportsmax secures NBA rights

Regional – Digicel and the National Basketball Association (NBA) announced today a new multiyear partnership that will deliver live games and extensive NBA programming to more than 30 Caribbean territories and make Digicel the Official Partner of the NBA in the region… more

LIME parent company in merger

Regional – The parent company of LIME has been busy splashing out US$1.4 billion to buy one of the Caribbean’s largest telecommunication companies… more

Partnership and Participation Request: Girls in ICT Day

Regional – The International Girls’ in ICT Day is an initiative backed by ITU member states to create a global environment that empowers and encourages girls and young women to consider careers in the growing field of information and communication technologies (ICTs). International Girls in ICT Day is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in April every year. The theme for this year is: “Women and Girls and Innovation”… more

Political slander in the time of Facebook

Trinidad and Tobago – “I always cheer up immensely if an attack is particularly wounding because I think, well, if they attack one personally, it means they have not a single political argument left.” —Margaret Thatcher… more

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

BTC to make workers redundant

Bahamas – The voluntary separation exercise at the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) did not go as well as BTC officials hoped, so the company will embark on a redundancy exercise to shave its staff count, it was revealed yesterday… more

Barbados flag (Wikipedia)Bitt officially launched in Barbados

Barbados – Bitt, the Barbados-based digital asset exchange, remittance channel, and merchant-processing gateway, was officially launched on Monday… more

No more Flow?

Barbados – In the wake of last week’s approval by the Fair Trading Commission (FTC), Cable and Wireless Communications, Plc (CWC), which trades here as LIME, today announced that it had completed its US$1.85 billion acquisition of 100 per cent of the equity of Columbus International Inc, which operates in Barbados as Flow… more

Telecoms minister satisfied with FTC decision

Barbados – With the merger of telecommunications companies LIME and FLOW, one Government official says he is looking forward to robust competition within the domestic sector… more

Claim against Mek Mi Rich and BTL goes into case management

Belize – Curtis Swasey and his attorney, Kareem Musa, were in court today for a hearing to address the intellectual property rights violation claim Swasey filed last month in the Supreme Court of Justice Courtenay Abel, against Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) and the Mek Mi Rich game show… more

BTL’s suit against former directors over sale of Channel 5 struck out

Belize – The Court of Appeal on Friday announced its decision to strike out a claim filed back in April 2011 by Belize Telemedia Limited, making claims for losses and damage allegedly caused by 7 former company directors and 4 associated companies, in a challenge to a move by the Ashcroft group to detach Great Belize Productions and its subsidiary Channel 5 from BTL, right before the Government of Belize moved in to nationalize the telecommunications company back in 2009… more

Curtis Swasey continues Mek Mi Rich challenge

Belize – Businessman Curtis Swasey claims that Belize Telemedia Limited (BTL) and MMR Belize Productions, parent to the popular television game show Mek Mi Rich, collaborated to take away his intellectual property consisting of the idea of lottery texting and the various items he created with BTL staff for two years under a non-disclosure agreement before the company ended business arrangements in August of 2014… more

CNS Viewpoint: Theft is theft

Cayman Islands – For many years successive governments of the Cayman Islands have been enabling people to fence stolen goods by giving them trade and business licences to do so… more

ListenMi launches League of Maroons comic on Android

Jamaica – ListenMi Caribbean Ltd, a local-based studio, this month launched League of Maroons, an online comic for download on Android and Amazon platforms… more

Teen CEO Hosts Hacking Competition In Jamaica

Jamaica – Sixteen-year-old Jamaican CEO Jadan Johnson and his company, Vybz Media Group, will be hosting the first-ever Hacking Generation Y competition here in Jamaica this month… more

CWC acquires Columbus in Caribbean quad-play crusade

Regional – UK-headquartered international operator group Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) has announced it has finalised its acquisition of Barbados-based telco conglomerate Columbus for $1.85 billion… more

Digicel welcomes Barbados FTC decision on LIME/Flow merger

Regional – Telecommunications company, Digicel, today welcomed the decision of the Barbados Fair Trading Commission (FTC) regarding the application for merger approval filed by Cable and Wireless Communications, the parent company of LIME, and Flow/ Columbus. … more

ADB launches online banking

Trinidad and Tobago – The Agriculture Development Bank (ADB) has disbursed more than $50 million in loans in the first five months of the financial year, Sheivan Ramnath, CEO of the ADB said… more

Sexting—act that never goes away

Trinidad and Tobago – “Be careful of what you put on the internet. It will never go away.” … more

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Bahamas flag (Wikipedia)PM Has US Report On NSA Interception Of Phone Calls

Bahamas – AMERICAN officials presented Prime Minister Perry Christie with a formal communication regarding reports that the US’ National Security Agency had been intercepting and monitoring the telephone conversations of Bahamians, Foreign Affairs and Immigration Minister Fred Mitchell confirmed yesterday… more

Union hits at BTC on layoff exercise

Bahamas – Bahamas Communications and Public Officers Union (BCPOU) President Bernard Evans said yesterday that it was “immature” of Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) officials to announce planned redundancies before the Easter holiday… more

Digicel urges caution over CWC merger

Barbados – Digicel Barbados is calling on the Barbados Fair Trading Commission (‘FTC’) to remain vigilant in ensuring that Cable and Wireless abides by conditions set out by the regulatory body… more

Interconnection rates drop

Barbados – There has been another shake-up in the telecommunications sector in Barbados… more

Rate ease soon

Barbados – THE wholesale interconnection rates between telecommunications pro-viders in Barbados are coming down starting from next month… more

GT&T launches plan to boost Internet speed

Guyana – Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) yesterday announced the implementation of 10 megabytes per second (MBPS) internet speeds, some five times the old speed, no extra cost to its customers… more

GT&T sounds impatience with no spectrum for 3G network

Guyana – Even as the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company (GT&T) increased its Internet speed in several areas of the country, the telecommunications provider on Wednesday appeared increasingly impatient with being unable to offer higher data speeds on mobile devices… more

Gov’t lauded for support of BPO sector

Jamaica – President of the Business Process Industry Association of Jamaica (BPIAJ), Yoni Epstein, has lauded the Government for its support of the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector, and the impact this is having on its growth and development… more

CWC/Columbus to become NewCo

Regional – NewCo, the company to be created from the merger of Cable and Wireless Communications (CWC) and Columbus International, is expected to deliver broader product offerings and improved services to customers in its combined markets across the Caribbean, Central America and the Andean regions… more

CWC may chop Flow and Lime brands

Regional – CHIEF Executive Officer of Cable and Wireless Communication (CWC) Phil Bentley has indicated that the company is undertaking a full review of the Flow and LIME brands following the completion of its US$1.8-billion acquisition of Columbus International Inc… more

Cable and Wireless shifts focus to delivering promised benefits

Regional – As Cable and Wireless Communications Plc (CWC) prepares for life as a new, enlarged entity, following completion of its acquisition of Columbus International Inc. (Columbus), the Caribbean awaits first signs of how their promise of being “Better Together” will actually play out… more

Digicel Rewards 12 On 12th Anniversary

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines – Digicel celebrated 12 years of operations here in St. Vincent and the Grenadines on Tuesday March 24th, and with that, came special rewards for 12 customers… more

Trinidad_and_Tobago FlagCWU angry over CWC/Columbus merger

Trinidad and Tobago – THE Communication Workers Union (CWU) yesterday called on Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar to launch an immediate investigation into the decision of the Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (TATT) to approve the acquisition by Cable and Wireless Communications (CWC) of Columbus International Inc, for US$1.85 billion… more

Expert: Let public buy CWC’s shares in TSTT

Trinidad and Tobago – Communications specialist Felipe Noguera says the state has a “moral and economic obligation” to allow locals to invest in the 49 per cent TSTT shares being divested by Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC)… more

Friday, 3 April 2015

Digicel boss leaving

Barbados – The Chief Executive Officer of Digicel (Barbados) Limited Mark Linehan has announced he is leaving the top post after nearly two years at the helm of the Irish-owned telecommunications giant… more

Digicel Business Delivers Safe and Secure Cloud Storage Solution for eCarib

Barbados – Digicel Business revolutionised eCarib Marketing with its cloud storage solution which offered the highest level of protection and access for its design files and improved the turnaround time on its projects… more

Cable & Wireless consolidates in the Caribbean and targets Latin America

Regional – “This is a transformational deal for Cable and Wireless Communications. Columbus Communications is an outstanding business; not only do we add significant fiber optic submarine backhaul and terrestrial broadband and TV capability to our leading mobile and legacy copper networks in the Caribbean, but our complementary B2B divisions can now offer geographical focus and a wider product offering in the faster-growing Latin American markets,” said CWC chief executive officer, Phil Bentley… more

Digicel joins Saint Lucia Internet Exchange

Saint Lucia – Saint Lucia’s Internet users can look forward to better connectivity and faster speeds between local Internet service providers (ISPs)… more

CWU licks for TATT

Trinidad and Tobago – A “bobolee” of Telecommunications Authority of T&T (TATT) chairman Selby Wilson was the centrepiece at a protest demonstration by the Communications Workers Union (CWU) outside the agency’s Barataria offices yesterday… more

Licks for Selby Wilson

Trinidad and Tobago – Slaps, kicks and cuffs rained down yesterday on Selby Wilson chairman of the Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (TATT) chairman as members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU) protested outside TATT offices in Barataria… more

TATT unmoved by CWU protest

Trinidad and Tobago – THE Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (TATT) was yesterday unmoved by a protest demonstration staged outside its gates by the Communications Workers Union (CWU) expressing the union’s unhappiness with TATT’s decision to approve the US$1.85 billion acquisition by Cable and Wireless Communications (CWC) of Columbus International Inc., and through that transaction control of Columbus Networks International (Trinidad) Limited and Columbus Communications Trinidad Limited… more

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Appealing To LIME For Internet Service

Jamaica – I have applied to LIME twice for Internet access. The first time I applied, I did not get any contact from LIME. I went to the store and was provided with an account number to pay $500… more

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Advisory Column: The Journey To Starting A BPO Business

Jamaica – Jamaica is desperately relying on business process outsourcing – BPO – to deliver 18,000 new jobs in five years, earn hundreds of millions in foreign exchange and propel economic growth in the medium to long term… more

Internet Independence – Poet, Deejay Use Web To Organise Overseas Dates

Jamaica – Poet Ras Takura released his debut album, Food War, in New York last month during his trek of the United States (US) East Coast. In January, deejay Gavinchi Brown got the news that his EP, The Gavinchi Code, was on the Billboard Reggae Chart while on tour in Maui, Hawaii… more


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