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Cayman Made – great news for local manufacturing

Cayman Made – great news for local manufacturing

Cayman Made – great news for local manufacturing.

Cayman Made is an exciting new Chamber initiative designed to create a distinctive high-quality ‘Cayman’ brand, exclusively for products made here.

“People already know that Cayman equals quality, when it comes to financial services and tourism, but that understanding should be extended to the increasing number of high quality and innovative products that are being made here, enabling each business to benefit by drawing them together under the Cayman Made umbrella for quality assurance and marketing,” said Chamber President and founder of the Cayman Spirits Company, Nelson Dilbert.

It’s a timely concept. All other sectors from tourism to financial services are well-represented, both by government bodies and well-established business associations. But recently there has been increasing interest in manufacturing – from the small scale of entrepreneurs using local produce to make preserves and hot sauces, cakes and pastries in their kitchen, to those, like Dilbert, whose Cayman Spirits Company operates from much larger commercial premises,  or the Cayman Cigar Company who are busy making a unique and premium range of cigars, being marketed all over the world.

Cayman Made serves the dual needs of providing a stamp of quality assurance – each business will only be allowed to use the Cayman Made logo once all the criteria have been met – with a much-needed Cayman branded marketing umbrella. Creating an overarching Cayman brand-personality is vital.

Products made here clearly cannot compete with cheap, mass-produced products made abroad which benefit from vast economies of scale at every stage of production and distribution.  To work, it is essential for local manufacturers to carve out a distinctive, high-quality market niche. That’s difficult – nearly impossible – if you are a small business working on your own. Cayman Made can do much of the heavy lifting, by establishing a distinctive brand that local people, visitors, and overseas customers get to recognize, love and trust.

The idea has been developed in consultation with a broad sweep of member businesses over a timespan of more than a year. There’s been plenty of discussion over what would work and what wouldn’t, as the Chamber sought to strike just the right balance by establishing criteria which are sound, while at the same time being so onerous as to prevent entry and exclude businesses who may not fall neatly into established categories.  Now, with its own logo, Cayman Made is ready for launch.

Eligible businesses have to make their product in the Cayman Islands, using, as-far-as-possible, to gain use of the Cayman Made logo their products would also have to have a reasonably long shelf-life. Also, producers would agree to an exchange or money-back guarantee, that would last a year from the date of purchase, with the Chamber acting as mediator as the first step in any dispute. Companies would be asked to provide evidence they had met the criteria to join, and this would be revisited periodically to ensure that each business was keeping to the rules. A small annual fee, payable to the Chamber, would cover the cost of administration.

Each business would be able to use the programme’s logo on their product, or on their online advertising. In addition, the Chamber would actively promote the Made in Cayman Brand online, as well as through social media and other media channels. Participating companies would also be represented at Made in Cayman events or trade shows overseas. To find out more about Cayman Made, contact Chamber CEO Wil Pineau at 743-9122 or at wil.pineau@caymanchamber.ky  

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