Local Enterprise offices in Meath and Louth travel to Berlin with technology companies

Twelve technology companies, all clients of either the Local Enterprise Office (LEO) in Meath or Louth, have just returned from Berlin where they were part of the InnovateAccelerate Europe Programme, a new cross-border initiative providing specialist support to help local companies seeking to expand into new markets.

Germany is Europe’s largest economy and is Ireland’s second largest market for services exports as well as Ireland’s fourth largest market for merchandise exports.

“With all the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, we see this as the perfect opportunity for our clients to begin the process of Internationalisation beyond these islands,” said Joe English, Head of Enterprise, LEO Meath.

Thomas McEvoy, Head of Enterprise, LEO Louth said,

“given the backdrop of Brexit, it was opportune for a North South group to work together to explore new markets in Europe. The opportunity Europe presents is very much alive and can help win business for Louth companies.”

“We want our clients to extend their reach beyond local markets and to explore overseas markets,” he added.

The InnovateAccelerate Europe programme is a pilot designed to complement the work of the Local Enterprise Offices.

On this, the inaugural business opportunity trip, clients had a full day of individual tailored support to help them identify new business collaboration opportunities. 

They also had training in advance of a day of one-to-one meetings with German companies.   The bilateral meetings took place at the Aldershof Technology Park which is the largest technology park and incubation centre in Berlin.

LEO clients travelled with representatives of other businesses who were clients of the Newry and Mourne Enterprise Agency (NMEA).

Dr Conor Patterson, Chief Executive Newry & Mourne Co-operative & Enterprise Agency, said,

“Transnational collaboration between entrepreneurs not only offers them the potential to open up new markets, it also gives them access to transformational knowledge which they can bring back into their firms to make them more innovative and increase their chances of long term survival.”

The clients also had the support of the Irish Embassy in Berlin, where they attended a reception, and the support of the Department of Business Enterprise and Innovation.

Mr English said that in the New Year,

“all the participating owner managers will continue to work with their InnovateAccelerate Europe mentor to produce a Business Opportunity Plan.”

The Meath companies on the four day trip were Gaussientific, Match-Fit, Wendevr Ltd, Eugene Cahill c/o 5D Design (who is a Meath Enterprise Tenant working in Kells Enterprise and Technology Centre), Adria Biotech Limited and Simpitiko Limited from the 3rd-6th December.  The Louth companies were Ambient Displays Ltd, ECC Design & Engineering Ltd, Sixtech,  John McGowan c/o Unicorn Magic Ltd (based in Kells Enterprise and Technology Centre) Aquafuel and Project Engineering.