Out Island Water Company was created by Trevor Williams, a native of the island of New Providence. The startup will specialize in purified water manufacturing, water bottling and manufacturing ice. The Access Accelerator Small Business Development Centre (Access Accelerator) assisted Out Island Water Company on Sal Salvador to receive funding approval of $207,500. The capital injection came from the Bahamas Entrepreneurial Venture Fund in the form of loan and equity funding.
As the son of San Salvadorians, Williams was inspired to start the company by the need to increase water security on the island.
Williams said, “Presently San Salvador does not have a water bottling plant on the island. They do have the presence of Water and Sewage Corporation which provides portable water but with a major resort like Club Med Columbus, I feel as though having bottled water should be localized. There is no reason bottling water should not be done on the island there are a lot of systems that can be used for reverse osmosis. San Salvador even has areas of freshwater based on my research. My whole purpose in this starting this business is to increase water security and to take advantage of the fact that San Salvador has a major resort and a few small ones going, so instead of taking those funds out of the community we will be able to keep it circulating on the island.”
Feeling excited and grateful for the capital injection, the entrepreneur explained some ways he plans to utilize the funding and how it will impact the community on San Salvador.
“The funding received will help in purchasing machines for reverse osmosis, bottling and wrapping. I will also be able to buy bottles and smaller machinery for helping with the storing, moving and delivery of the water and ice such as pallet jacks and a delivery truck. All of those things go into setting up the manufacturing space along with having the actual building constructed,” Williams said. “I am looking at Summer of this year to be up and running. Based on my business plan I am going to be able to hire between four to six employees within a three- to four-year period. I am looking forward to being able to provide more employment opportunities to the locals on San Salvador.”
While entrepreneurship was not always the path Williams saw for himself, he believes that the experience from jobs he has had over his career have readied him for business ownership.
Williams said, “I was hesitant about starting a business, so it was a slow drift toward an entrepreneurial career. I had to build confidence in myself through my professional career in Operations Management and my other job experiences. This journey for me has been very educational and has contributed to my overall notion of how the world works, the things you need to do to be successful in this life and more importantly how if you want something you must work hard at it.”
Thanking the Access Accelerator for the assistance, Williams shared that it was the organization that got his plan to the point where opportunities were now available to him.
“I want to thank the Access Accelerator for working with me and helping me to get my plan to the point where a reputable organization was willing to give me a chance,” Williams said. “They gave me advice and pointed me in the right direction when my plan did not speak to key elements. I wish this organization the best because they are helping Bahamians. I know a lot of Bahamians out there looking for an opportunity like what I have been afforded, so I really do appreciate the effort they put into assisting business owners. I know that there are other organizations out there that I may have been able to access funding through, but what the Access Accelerator does is consolidate the effort, so it gives the business owners the best chance at guiding them through the process and ensuring that the business plans speak to what the financial institutions or investors look for.”
Williams encourages business owners to try the Access Accelerator for themselves and put in the time to be ready to take advantage of opportunities when they come.
Williams said, “You have to try it for yourself. Those people who have not tried the system and are out there making negative commentary, I would say they are absolutely wrong. Any organization that is working toward helping Bahamians to achieve their goals, at least give them a fair opportunity. I would encourage business owners to believe in what you believe in, prepare themselves and study their ideas. You cannot just say I am going after this idea, but you cannot properly explain it. That is important because other people cannot believe in your dream if you cannot articulate it and convince them that you know enough about what you are talking about for them to be willing to take a chance on you. You may have a good idea but study your craft.”
The Access Accelerator is the product of a tripartite arrangement between the Government, through the Ministry of Finance, University of The Bahamas (UB) and the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation (BCCEC). The Centre works to guide the development, funding, growth, and evolution of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (“MSMEs”) in The Bahamas. Visit us at www.accessaccelerator.org.