Approximately 300 entrepreneurs from across the South East descended on County Kilkenny’s Lyrath Estate Hotel on Thursday last v for the biggest networking event in the South East: Bizfest – ‘Inspiring Success’.
The aim of Bizfest is to provide an opportunity for owner/managers and their key staff across Ireland to make connections, while immersing themselves in the experience, entrepreneurial spirit and stories of entrepreneurs. Bizfest 2016 was hosted by Kilkenny, Carlow, Wexford, Waterford and Tipperary County Councils (Local Enterprise Offices), in association with Enterprise Ireland, the South East Action Plan for Jobs and Bank of Ireland.
Speaking about the event, Orla Battersby, Head of Enterprise Ireland’s High Potential Start-up Division said she “was delighted to be a partner in Bizfest 2016 and the success of the event goes to show that the South East business community believe that forming strong relationships and making connections is an essential part of their business”.
Opening the event, Kilkenny County Council’s Chief Executive, Colette Byrne said “the fastest and surest way to build solid business contacts today is through networking, however, networking is not only about making new connections, it is also about building lasting and mutually beneficial business relationships”. Byrne outlined that “since the establishment of the Local Enterprise Offices, we have been involved in many projects aimed at engagement of our local business community at local, national and international level”. Byrne concluded by saying “County Councils in the South East continue to look at ways to improve their supports to enterprise and acknowledged the contribution they make to the wider business community in the South East. This is and always will be, an important part of the Local Authority’s strategy to strengthen and facilitate the success of our private sector, today and beyond, by following the three principles of strategy, synergy and success.”
The panel event was kicked off by Richard Curran who outlined the achievements , challenges and opportunities of the companies assembled on the panel which included Rachel Doyle of The Arboretum; Michael Hoyne of Merlyn Showering; Mark Cradock of Maven TM; Cian O’ Maidin, nearForm; Ann O’ Brien, Kent Stainless and Philip Martin of Blanco Nino.
Closing the event, David Merriman, Head of Enterprise at Bank of Ireland said “we all share the common aspiration of building a world-class local eco-system, with various strategic initiatives such as Bizfest, which are aimed at helping shape and nurture the country’s future business leaders”.