John Sandiford Coaches Job Seekers in Personal Finance Management on the road to SMILE 2023 Job Fair



PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — As part of the “SMILE Jobseeker Course Program” in the run-up to the St. Maarten Innovations, Initiatives and Industries Link-Up Event (SMILE), St. Maarten born entrepreneur John A.M. Sandiford presented his “Personal Finance” Masterclass, “6-INGS”. The masterclass is intended to coach financial literacy & planning on the often-tough road towards a dream job, taking into account the need for saving, investing and personal growth development.

Based on his own previous struggles to make amends as a student in the Netherlands as well as his first steps as an entrepreneur, Sandiford created a personal finance framework which grew into a course that has helped out many students and young professionals in both the Caribbean as well as the Netherlands. His budgeting philosophy centers around understanding your personal goals & dreams and how to budget realistically and structurally based on his model “6-INGS”. One of the earlier versions of his masterclass was held to great acclaim at the 2022 SMILE event. However, for this edition, an optional “serious gaming” evening was added to the mix for participants to quickly tackle the learning curve of “Personal Finance Literacy”.

Sint Maarten born Sandiford is a former musician and founder of Antonio Media BV, a Netherlands-based User Experience (UX) & specialized multimedia company. Antonio Media serves SME’s, NGO’s as well as some of the largest companies of Europe. He continues to connect and give back to his island of birth by sharing his knowledge through coaching, speaking, podcasting, advocating for innovation and the strategic importance of creative and design SMEs. As a speaker, he was amongst others in addressing the governments of the four kingdom countries at the 65-year Kingdom Statute ceremony in The Hague, Netherlands. As of the first SMILE in 2018, John has been the event’s master of ceremony and provided a masterclass for each of its editions.

The St. Maarten Innovation, Initiatives & Industries Link-up Event (SMILE) took place for the first time in 2018. SMILE is a platform that inspires innovation & sustainable development by connecting local, regional and international businesses, NGO networks, knowledge centers and government agencies with each other in the most inspiring environment of the world, the Caribbean. Every company, NGO or individual who is interested is welcome.

This year’s edition, with the assistance of the R4CR foundation and the National Employer Service Council (NESC), will merge SHTA’s Job Fair into the business event. Strengthening the labor force of the companies, NGO’s and government agencies present at SMILE, which has always been one of its key goals.

SMILE’s main supporters for its 2023 edition are Grant Thornton, the Department of Culture of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports, Dynaf, Recruit-A-Student, Bureau for Intellectual Property, Central Bank of Curacao and St. Maarten and University St. Martin (USM). Over the upcoming months, SMILE will provide more information on speakers and event segments via Those businesses interested to take part can reach out to or by calling +1-721- 5420108.