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Benjamín Leon Jr. recognized as South Florida Entrepreneur of the Year

The entrepreneurs behind internationally-known Zumba Fitness, LLC and the Tortuga Rum Cake Company, both Florida International University (FIU) College of Business Administration alumni, will be inducted into the College’s Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame at a ceremony on May 19, 2011 from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Westin Colonnade in Coral Gables.

Benjamín Leon Jr., chairman and founder of Leon Medical Centers, will receive the South Florida Entrepreneur of the Year award at the event, “The Magic of Entrepreneurship.”  Alberto Aghion (BBA ’99), co-founder and COO of Zumba Fitness, LLC, and Monique Hamaty-Simmonds (BBA ’96), CEO, Tortuga Rum Cake Company, will be honored in the 12th annual ceremony, presented by the College of Business Administration and the Eugenio Pino and Family Global Entrepreneurship Center.

Investing in the Caribbean region's tourism sector will be the focus of a power breakfast this June, presented by the Caribbean Tourism Organization and Hard Beat Communications, Inc., in collaboration with the Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Hard Beat Communications, a digital media solutions company specializing in the Caribbean and Latin American market, is teaming up with the Caribbean's regional tourism agency and CAACI to present the Invest Caribbean 2011 Power Breakfast on June 9, 2011 from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. in New York City. Confirmed speakers to date include W. Dave Dowrich, Vice President - Investment Banking at Goldman, Sachs & Co. and David Brillembourg, founder, chairman and chief executive officer of the Brilla Group, aprivate equity real estate firm focused exclusively on acquiring luxury beachfront hotel and resort assets in South Florida, the Caribbean, Mexico, Central America and Colombia.

Dr. Basil Springer of BIM VenturesMentorship is a key element of a thriving economy, according to the head of a Barbadian Venture Capital Fund.
Dr. Basil Springer, Project Manager of the Barbados Entrepreneurs' Venture Capital Fund (BIM Ventures), believes successful mentorship relationships are essential for propelling economic growth in Barbados and the Caribbean, and is pleased with the results of advocacy efforts to place this issue on the front burner.
Global statistics, asserted Springer, reveal 80 to 90 percent of start-up businesses fail within the first few years of operation. These collapses, he argues, are due to the failure of at least one of the basic business functions - corporate governance, marketing, operations, information communications technology, human resource development or finance.

Taking creativity to a new level, a Barbadian art gallery is mixing delicious local foods with its expansive line of inspirational artwork.

It's the gallery's contribution to building awareness about the importance of eating healthy, and less expensive, local foods, a move being supported by the Barbados food industry.