LEOs Open Doors for Cork Businesses
More than 3,000 people will attend business 50 events in Cork from Monday 6th to Friday 10th March as part of Local Enterprise Week. The Local Enterprise Offices of South Cork, Cork North and West and Cork City today announced their programme of events for Local Enterprise Week, a national event which runs across all 31 LEOs that is aimed at anyone thinking of starting a business, new start-ups and growing SMEs. The week-long schedule of events will include conferences, workshops, seminars, networking, and business advice clinics.
Cork's Local Enterprise Offices who take over 9,000 calls each year from businesses throughout the county provided almost €1.8 million of financial supports in 2016 for manufacturing and internationally-traded micro-enterprises throughout the city and county with a further €423,975 of funding awarded to aid micro-enterprises to improve their e-commerce capability.
Cork's LEOs also hosted more than 250 business training courses and events in 2016 including Start Your Own Business programmes, Management Development courses, Kickstart Your Food Business, Women in Business, Ireland's Best Young Entrepreneur programme, and online and social media courses. More than 1,000 business owners also availed of free business advice clinics in their offices, with over 2,500 hours of one-to-one mentoring with a business adviser approved for micro-enterprises. Add to this the creation of over 400 jobs by Cork Micro Enterprise Businesses which were supported by the LEOs in 2016. The offices also engage with 50 schools and more than 3,500 students who participate in their Schools Enterprise Programme.
Among the events being hosted throughout Local Enterprise Week will be a female entrepreneurship conference which will feature a panel of Ireland's leading upcoming and established female entrepreneurs, a Taste Cork event for Cork's budding food businesses, and a Digital Conference focused on trading online on Wednesday March 8th with key industry experts in Rochestown Park.
Other events throughout the week include a Brexit Proof your Business seminar, a Craft and Design Seminar in Inchydoney featuring jewellery designer Chupi and Dermott Rowan, Managing Director and Co-owner of Kiely Rowan PLC. a mystery “stage” coach for young entrepreneurs to meet some of Cork's leading entrepreneurs and experts, and a 'Shaping Ireland's Future' event for third level students in Cork Opera House on Monday 6th March with internationally renowned business speakers.
Speaking of the upcoming Local Enterprise Week, Kevin Curran, Head of Enterprise, Cork North and West said, "2016 was one of our most successful in terms of aiding so many emerging businesses. Weeks like this are proof that the future of business in Cork is very bright. The Local Enterprise Offices are there throughout the year but Local Enterprise Week helps us to celebrate the diversity of businesses we work with and encourages more budding entrepreneurs to speak with us about how we can open more doors for their business and really take advantage of the huge level of supports that we offer."
Adrienne Rodgers, Head of Enterprise Cork City said, "Our offices combined aided hundreds of Cork businesses in 2016 alone through grant approvals and mentoring and guided dozens of entrepreneurs who are just at the beginning of their business journey. These figures have been increasing year on year and events like Enterprise Week will encourage even more business people to come to us for advice and guidance long in to the future."
Also speaking at the announcement of events, Sean O'Sullivan, Head of Enterprise South Cork, said " We are delighted to launch the schedule of events for this year's Local Enterprise Week. Day to day we deal with a broad range of businesses from food to craft, technology and retail and I believe we have something for everyone in our line up."
Most events are free of charge and can be booked through Cork's Local Enterprise Office websites with early booking recommended. Follow LEO on social media or search #localenterprise.