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11 U.S. Virgin Islands small-manufacturing entrepreneurs to promote locally-made products in New York City

USVI Economic Development Authority officials to lead delegation at NY NOW Summer 2018

CHARLOTTE AMALIE, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands – August 6, 2018 – Representatives from the U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority (USVIEDA), along with the USVI State Trade Expansion Program (STEP), will sponsor and lead a delegation of 11 U.S. Virgin Islands small-manufacturing entrepreneurs to NY NOW Summer 2018, the leading market for home and lifestyle products.   NY NOW Summer 2018 will be held from August 12-15, 2018 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, 655 W 34th Street, New York City, New York.  

This trade show event will allow these small manufacturers to showcase and promote their design-driven products – that were made in the USVI – to buyers from around the world as they network among more than 20,000 buyers from 66 countries.  Nearly 40 percent of NY NOW buyers only source NY NOW for products.  This will be the first time the USVIEDA and the small-manufacturing entrepreneurs will attend the event.    

The following USVI small-manufacturing entrepreneurs will attend NY NOW Summer 2018:



Business Name:

USVI-Manufactured Products:


Jason Budsan

Caribbean Herbals



Christa-Ann Molloy

Christa’s Art Gallery

Prints on bath and home accessories


Ramone Reid

Cultured Naturals Body Care

Organic hair and body products


Deborah Sun

Debbie Sun Art Studio

Art printed on fabrics and other gifts


Clemenceau Perry

DTC  Recycling  d/b/a Perry’s Glass

Glassware items (Dinnerware)


Linda Bailey

Home Grown Farm



Aquannette Chinnery

JDNatlady’s Creations, LLC

Soaps and hair products


Peter Gonzalez

Pita Art Studio

Metal embossed wall hangings


Toni Downs

Queen CariBEE

Soaps and honey


Linda Bailey

Harmony Bath & Body

Soaps and scrubs


Diego Kean

Studio VI Photography

Photographs of tropical images printed on postcards, wall stickers, decorative wall/window paper wrap, etc.

The STEP program is authorized by the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 through the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). 

“These local, small-manufacturing entrepreneurs will also be featured in targeted magazine publications within their respective industries.  This delegation is a tremendous opportunity for these entrepreneurs to gain exposure, and for the USVI to showcase its local talent and the unique products that exist within our Territory”, said Wayne L. Biggs, Jr., Assistant Chief Executive Officer/Chief Operating Officer. 

Held twice a year – in August and February – NY NOW is “the leading market for home and lifestyle products. NY NOW features three collections—HOME, LIFESTYLE and HANDMADE and is produced by Emerald Expositions”, a leading operator of business-to-business trade shows in the United States.

“We’re excited to assist another group of small businesses to grow through export marketing.  These quality products unique and authentic to Caribbean will be on display to the world”, said Nadine Marchena Kean, USVI STEP Project Coordinator and Director of Enterprise Zone Commission.

Funded by a grant from the SBA, STEP is a one-year program trade initiative that is designed to help small businesses grow, increase their exporting activities, and raise the value of the products and services.  Through SBA’s competitive State Trade Expansion Program (STEP), $18 million in funding has been awarded to 44 State international trade agencies to support export growth among U.S. small businesses.

In 2017, through the USVIEDA, the U.S. Virgin Islands applied for a grant to administer this program in the Territory and was awarded a grant in the amount $125,000.  The Hon. Kenneth E. Mapp, Governor of the USVI, designated the USVIEDA as the agency to administer the STEP program in the Territory.

In 2013, USVIEDA representatives led trade missions with local, small manufacturers to the New York City’s 59th Annual Summer Fancy Food Show, and to SIAL Brazil: The Latin American Food Marketplace – a food trade event held in Sao Paulo.

To learn more about NY NOW Summer 2018, you can visit .   To find out more about USVI STEP, contact Nadine Marchena Kean at 340-714-1700, ext. 256; or send an email to .


About the U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority.   The U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority (USVIEDA) is a semi-autonomous governmental instrumentality [of the Government of the Virgin Islands] that was created on February 1, 2001.  It is responsible for the promotion and enhancement of economic development of the United States Virgin Islands. The USVIEDA assumes, integrates and unifies the functions of these four entities:  Economic Development Commission, Virgin Islands Economic Development Park Corporation, Economic Development Bank and the Enterprise Zone Commission.  The USVIEDA accomplishes its mission by attracting multi-national investors to the Territory to establish or relocate their business in the U.S. Virgin Islands.  It also provides financial assistance for new and existing small to medium-sized businesses in the Territory and assists V.I. residents and business owners with rehabilitating their properties located in blighted and distressed areas that were once vibrant economic centers of activity in the Territory. Learn more about the USVIEDA at .

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