My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: JDX and PayLess - First Dove of a Coming Recovery

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Thursday, December 30, 2010

JDX and PayLess - First Dove of a Coming Recovery


Few people know how to take a walk. The qualifications are endurance, plain clothes, old shoes, an eye for nature, good humor, vast curiosity, good speech, good silence and nothing too much.

Ralph Waldo Emerson American Poet, Lecturer and Essayist, (1803-1882)

Ever since the JDX (Jamaica debt Exchange) was initiated in early February of 2010, progress has been steady and slow, with the JDX exposing the fact that the main factor holding back the growth in the Jamaican Economy being the Banking Sector and their result to lower their lending rate spreads and the need to diversify our Energy Supply away from Oil as per my blog article entitled “JDX - Progress since the start of the New Financial Year 2010-2011”.

Since then, the social upheaval since the Extradition matter involving Christopher “Dudus” Coke has exposed the fact that Crime has been on the decline, the criminals having no abiding city in which to hide since Tivoli Gardens fell as in my blog articles entitled “JDX and Banks - Money, Money, Money in a Rich Man's World” and “JDX and the Economy - The Winter of my Discontent”.

Again, it is always around Christmas that the news out of North America reminds me of why I do not envy Americans, as I am not fond of living in a freezer as stated the article “Flights resume - as do the long lines - after blizzard”, published Tuesday December 28, 2010 11:55 am ET by CHRIS HAWLEY and MEGHAN BARR, Associated Press, Yahoo! News.

Now a glimmer of hope with the crime monster seemingly under control as stated in the article “Crime fighting in Jamaica - Crime falling since 'Dudus' extradition”, published Friday, December 24, 2010 by Al Edwards, The Jamaica Observer.

FDI (Foreign Direct Investors) seem very aware of this, as they are now slowly coming to Jamaica. Most notable of which is PayLess Shoesource, which has advanced plans to set up operations in Jamaica as stated in the article “PayLess coming to Jamaica”, published Wednesday, December 22, 2010 The Jamaica Observer.

Slated for a February 2011 launch with three (3) stores,  coming to Jamaica is a part of their International launch as stated in the article “PayLess eyes February opening in Jamaica”, published Wednesday, December 29, 2010 The Jamaica Observer.

However, it can be successfully argued to be an indication of the Vybz Kartel Effect, as the DeeJay, more popular known as the ‘Teacher’ has been promoting Clarks, Jeans, Blackberrys and even Cake Soap in his latest videos entitled “Vybz Kartel featuring Russian ‘Jeans and Fitted’” and his prior hit song “Vybz Kartel ft. Popcaan and Gaza Slim - Clarks”.

Sales of the Clarks Brand of shoes benefited as per the local tabloid article “Kartel's 'Clarks' inspire sales”, published Wednesday April 7 2010 by The Daily Star with news of this phenomenon reaching even the International Press  as stated in the Australian Daily Telegraph in an article entitled “Rapper's song about Clark's shoes boosts sales in Jamaica”, published July 09, 2010 5:34PM, The Daily Telegraph, Australia.

Possibly the REAL reason for PayLess Shoesource coming to Jamaica, as opposed to the explanation proffered by Michael Stern, Minister of State in the Ministry of Industry and Commerce who spoke, quote: “A lot of foreign companies are now showing interest in Jamaica, especially since the reduction in the crime rate”

Amusingly, Cake Soap maker Blue Power has been seeing an increase in its Second Quarter sales for 2010 as per the article “Blue Power nets 77% 2Q profit”, published Wednesday, December 22, 2010, The Jamaica Observer.

This after recoding an initial loss of 40% due to administrative costs in the First Quarter of 2010 as per the article, testament to the power of Product Placement Marketing as per the article “Blue Power's profits fall”, published Friday, September 10, 2010, by Alicia Roache, The Jamaica Observer.

Apparently, the nascent recovery from the Recession in the United States of America mean that American Companies, ironically, though willing to keep production and sales within the United States of America, have come to the realization that International markets are worth the trouble, especially as many of the Developing World countries are increasing showing a taste for all-things American!

Further evidence of this can be seen from the push towards International markets by Netflix as stated in the article “Netflix said to be planning 2011 International push”, published December 28, 2010 3:09 PM PST by Don Reisinger, CNET News - The Digital Home.

The possibility thus exists that they can make DVD’s and even Cable TV obsolete is very possible via streaming as stated in the article “Netflix expects video streaming to drown out DVD's”, published Wednesday, November 24, 2010 The Jamaica Observer as per my blog article entitled “Telecom Providers, 100MBps Broadband and the Broadcasting Commission - Redemption Song” as well as the article “Broadcasting and Digital Switch Over - Back to the Future to compete with LIME TV”.

Even more compelling evidence is the fact that albeit one million (1,000,000) jobs have been created in the United States of America, nearly one million, four hundred thousand (1,400,000) have been created Internationally, at least according to the Washington Policy think tank The Economic Policy Institute as stated in the article “Many US companies hiring overseas”, published Wednesday, December 29, 2010, AP, The Jamaica Observer.

This is evidence of the skill set and better education levels of foreigners [read: Jamaicans] versus American workers.

Jamaica, despite the Recession, is still a seasonal beneficiary of the harsh blizzard like conditions in the US of A on the Eastern Seaboard, seeing record stopovers to our warm Caribbean isles as per the article “Harsh winter working in Jamaica's favour”, published Tuesday, December 28, 2010 by  INGRID BROWN Observer senior reporter, The Jamaica Observer.

Is this the first sign of a coming recovery? Or is it just an indication of just how bad it is to do business in America? Stay tuned………
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