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BTA helps retailers expand overseas reach

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Nearly 50 retailers have signed up for a campaign led by the Bermuda Tourism Authority to help boost local retailers' sales at home and overseas.

Independent Retailer Month is aimed at promoting local shops owned by a Bermudian individual, family or partnership, and not affiliated with established global brands or franchises.

Glenn Jones, interim chief executive of the BTA, said yesterday that the campaign aimed to elevate Bermuda brands to overseas consumers while stimulating spending here at home by those still earning an income.

He added that the BTA would use its considerable international reach through its contacts data base and social-media network to help small retailers connect with potential buyers overseas.

“So far, 47 retailers have registered to be a part of this promotion, at least 13 fit into a higher tier because they offer online orders and make deliveries worldwide,” Mr Jones said.

“The higher tier will see greater exposure thorough our channels because the path to purchase is easier to access for consumers.”

Participating retailers will receive a “toolkit” to advise them on developing e-commerce capabilities, he added.

“We've formed partnerships with DHL and others to assist any business without e-commerce and international shipping to get started,” Mr Jones said.

He added that starting on July 13, small shops with click-and-ship operations and an inventory of Bermuda-inspired or Bermuda-made items may appear in a weeklong @Bermuda Instagram Stories takeover, featuring a different category each day.

These would be, next Monday, Bermudian beauty products; Tuesday, boutiques; Wednesday, handmade jewellery; Thursday, foods to take home, and on Friday the campaign will partner with local social-media brand The Nab App and its retail industry influencer Danielle Paynter to help guide shoppers to some of her favourite local items and entrepreneurs.

All retailers fitting the promotion's criteria will be profiled on a new dedicated webpage at GoToBermuda.com.

Mr Jones added that there would be more events and initiatives to come.

“As our economy reopens, expect promotions that help stimulate spending from visitors and locals: yacht and catamaran week, alfresco dining festival, spa month, and staycations are among the special themes in the works,” he said.

The campaign, which is backed by the Bermuda Chamber of Commerce and the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation, echoes a similar initiative in North America, but is new to Bermuda.

Mr Jones was speaking in a press conference outside the Hamilton Visitor Service Centre on Front Street yesterday. He was backed up by Ray Lambert of the BEDC, Lorraine Shailer, retail chairwoman of the Chamber's retail division, clothing retailer Rebecca Singleton of Tabs, jeweller Alexandra Mosher, and retail influencer Ms Paynter.

Mr Jones expected more retailers to sign up. “Promoting our retailers to overseas consumers has been a small part of what we have done before. So many retailers may not be aware of this. But when they become aware, we hope more will register.”

A participation form is available online at https://tinyurl.com/ydcwcfyb

Independent Retailer Month: Glenn Jones, interim CEO of the BTA, speaks at a press conference yesterday, watched by Lorraine Shailer, left, chairwoman of the retail division of the Chamber of Commerce and Rebecca Singleton, right, of Tabs (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Independent Retailer Month: pictured, from left, back row, are Alexandra Mosher, Lorraine Shailer, Rebecca Singleton, Glenn Jones, Danielle Paynter and Ray Lambert; front and centre are Visitor Service Centre employee Nadia Silva and her daughter Skylar Ascento, 5 (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

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Published July 07, 2020 at 9:00 am (Updated July 07, 2020 at 9:25 am)

BTA helps retailers expand overseas reach

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