International Entrepreneurs connect with Meath Enterprise Week

Meath Enterprise Week 2016, which was partnered with Global Entrepreneurship Week for the third year running, is regarded as one of the largest Enterprise Week’s in Ireland. MEW2016 took place from November 14th to 18th in various locations around County Meath.

The many events held during the week and the main event, an Exhibition and Conference on Thursday November 19th, offered an opportunity to network, engage and learn under the themes of Innovation and Entrepreneurship. The Conference and Exhibition in the Knightsbrook Hotel, Trim on the 15th November was attended by over 400 delegates and was a huge success with high profile speakers, panel discussions and a busy Exhibition “The feedback for MEW2016 has been extremely positive and the fact that we were again partnered with Global Entrepreneurship Week means we were showcasing ourselves to the world which is very important for us if we are to develop world class regional cluster projects in the food and tech sectors such as the Boyne Valley Food Hub and the Kells Tech Hub” said Gary O’Meara Manager at Meath Enterprise.

The week started on Monday 14th in Trim with a major event entitled ‘Startup Academy Bootcamp’   hosted by AIB and was the first of a series of bootcamps that will take place throughout Ireland in the coming months; VTOS Navan and LMETB hosted a lunchtime enterprise start seminar / workshop called ‘Unleash Your Niche which encouraged students to consider the path of entrepreneurship and was supported by Meath Enterprise, Meath LEO and the Dept of Social Protection; On Monday evening Meath Chambers delivered a mini conference on BREXIT in the Pillo Hotel, Ashbourne which included high profile speakers such as John McGrane President of the British & Irish Chamber of Commerce and John Fahey Senior Economist with AIB.

Tuesday 15th Nov was the #MEW2016 Business Conference & Expo and attendees had an early start with a Conference and Exhibition starting at 8.30am in Knightsbrook Hotel in Trim. The Exhibition opened with over 70 leading agencies and businesses from Meath showcasing what they have to offer. After browsing the Expo the delegates took to their seats for the official opening and panel discussions. Cllr Maria Murphy, Cathaoirleach Meath County Council was the first to speak. Other panelists and keynote speakers included Orlaith Carmody, Minister Damien English TD, Dr Michael Brougham, David Bradley, Gary O’Meara, Alvan Hunt, Sarah Martin, Paul Murtagh, Adam McCrossan, Pat Gallagher, John Cunningham, Dara Mullin, Noel Moran, Kevin Stewart and many more.

“The calibre of speakers and panelists at this years conference was exceptional and delegates really enjoyed the discussions which were streamed live on the internet.” said Cllr Joe Reilly Chairman Meath Enterprise. Gerard Corcoran, Head of AIB for Meath, Westmeath and Longford, who were one of the main sponsors of Meath Enterprise Week, addressed the conference just after lunch where we showcased the very best of Meath and the Boyne Valley with a fantastic free ‘Artisan Buffet Feast’ in the main restaurant of the Knightsbrook Hotel. Gary O’Meara closed the conference & expo but not before presenting a cheque for €250 to, the winners of the #MEW2016 Student Enterprise Competition which saw TY Students compete for the title of ‘Best Business Idea / Concept’.

Day 3 of Meath Enterprise Week was another early start with the BNI Chapter in Navan hosting a mini conference and expo in the Newgrange Hotel; A number of meetings took place during the day with Enterprise Ireland and the Dept of Food, Agriculture and Marine to progress the Boyne Valley Food Hub project which is being led by Gary O’Meara; A new Dunboyne Business Network was officially launched in Dunboyne library that evening with the support of Cllr Maria Murphy, Meath Enterprise, Meath Chambers and local businesses; And finally, the Meath Business & Tourism Awards ‘3 Minute Pitch’ event took place on the Wednesday night. This was a hugely successful event which saw businesses across multiple sectors including Tourism deliver expert pitches to a panel of judges and a packed house at AIB Navan with the overall winners to be announced at the Meath Business & Tourism Awards Gala event on Friday 2nd December in the Newgrange Hotel.

Other major events took place in Dublin and Cork from Thursday 17th through until Sunday 20th Nov as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week and Meath Enterprise, as a national events partner for #GEW2016, played an important role in delivering and supporting these events. “Following the huge success of the Pipeline Summit in September, where over 70 USA entrepreneurs, experts and educators were hosted over 3 days of events and master sessions in Meath and Dublin by Meath Enterprise, in partnership with AIB, Dublin BIC, GEN Ireland and the new Cantillon Foundation, we are delighted to have been involved in delivering another successful Global Entrepreneurship Week which also saw delegates from over 60 countries descend on Cork last weekend for the Startup Nations Summit” said Gary O’Meara, Manager of Meath Enterprise and National Partner and Member of the Global Entrepreneurship Network in Ireland.

A steering committee was formed by Gary O’Meara, Manager of Meath Enterprise some months ago to develop the week long programme of events. Chaired by Mr. O’Meara the committee included Rosita Moyles, JM Food Services; Tara Smith, Meath County Council; Felicia Ogboru, Meath Enterprise; John Cunningham, Epicom Ireland Ltd; Amanda Murphy, Regional Manager, AIB; Paul Murtagh, Business Consultant and Mentor; David Bradley, GEN Ireland, Cllr Joe Reilly, Chairman, Meath Enterprise, Ciaran Breslin, Meath Enterprise, Jillian Glancy, Social Dynamics, Guitar Egbon, Printbox and Stevie Markey, Boyne Valley Media.

International Entrepreneurs connect with Meath Enterprise Week
L-R; Garrett McMahon Teacher St Pats, Gary O’Meara Meath Enterprise and Minster Damien English TD presenting the #MEW2016 Student Enterprise Competition ‘Best Business Idea / Concept’ award to the winners from St Pats – Tom Fitzgerald, Matthew Heaney and Dylan Carrig for their winning idea –