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Community : Grand Bahama Last Updated: Dec 30, 2019 - 5:05:45 PM

SBDC secures funding for funeral service in Grand Bahama
By Shawn Gabrielle Gomez
Dec 29, 2019 - 3:30:05 PM

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Le Pavillion successfully obtained 186,000 dollars in capital loans from Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) through the Access Accelerator, Small Business Development Centre (SBDC).

The cemetery and mausoleum service is owned by Grand Bahama native, Nicole Johnson. With a motto that says, “We care for your loved one like our own”, Le Pavillion Offers internment plots, mausoleum niches, hearse and luxury SUV rental services, headstone creation, graphic services and counselling.

Dubbed the funeral organizer of her family Johnson has always had a love for event planning.

Johnson said, “I am an event planner by heart and always found myself planning events and usually funerals.”

Disappointed by some of the cerimetries on Grand Bahama, Johnson decided to offer Grand Bahamians an alternative. Watching the news Johnson learned about the SBDC and decided to join.

“I joined the SBDC with a desire to make a difference and the idea to create wealth for myself and family was impressed upon me,” Johnson said. “I had dreams but did not have the funding, especially for a massive project like this.”

She continued, “I had a wonderful experience working with the SBDC. Kudos goes out to my wonderful advisor Shamine Johnson. She and Mrs. Grant were my strongest advocates. Shamine, in particular, kept in encouraging me, texting me, and advising even immediately after the storm when she was facing her own challenges.”

Johnson continued, “Can’t say enough about her tenacity and willingness to go all out for her clients. She is a genuine gem. Le Pavillion would not have become a reality but merely an unrealizable dream to me, if I did not receive access to capital through SBDC.”

Now that Le Pavillion has received funding from RBC Johnson is eager to provide top of the line cemeterial services to the island of Grand Bahama.

Johnson said, “It feels awesome to be funded. I can finally watch my vision unfold. It makes it easier having that financial backing. To me this validates all I have put into birthing this dream with God leading me every step of the way. I am now able to exhale. It has been a long journey, but with God and Shamine, Le Pavillion is born.

One of our immediate goals for Le Pavillion is to work to create the atmosphere and aura that we want our clients to experience. We intend to provide Grand Bahama with top notch, first class service that has not been experienced here.”

The SBDC is the product of a tripartite arrangement between the Government, through the Ministry of Finance, University of The Bahamas (UB) and the Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation (BCCEC). The Centre will work to guide the development, funding, growth, and evolution of Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises ("MSMEs") in The Bahamas.

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