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National Womens Enterprise Day celebrated by Female Entrepreneurs

Eamon Ryan, Head of Enterprise LEO Limerick, Valerie Murphy Breast Care, Valerie O’Hanlon Clarence Consulting, Bernie Moloney LEO Limerick, Guest Rosemarie Henebry, Key Speaker Miriam O Callaghan, Judy Tighe AIB O’Connell Limerick, Heather Supple LEO Limerick and MidWest region ambassador Hannah Wrixon, Last Minute Minders at the National Womens Enterprise Day event in Kilkenny.

More than 120 businesswomen joined forces this week with the Local Enterprise Office Limerick and others at the ‘South East meets Mid West’ event in the River Court Hotel, Kilkenny to celebrate ten years of ‘National Women’s Enterprise Day’.

The Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Limerick was amongst 31 LEOs in local authorities all over the country which participated in inspiring National Womens Enterprise Day 2016 gatherings which saw more than 800 innovative female entrepreneurs share their ‘road to success’ at nationwide events.

Guest speakers, including broadcaster Miriam O’Callaghan, revealed to a packed room their business success secrets, and gave inspired and motivational presentations on how women can make it in the business world.


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Last year, Local Enterprise Offices all over Ireland supported over 11,000 female entrepreneurs through training, mentoring, direct financial assistance and networking.  They are trying to encourage even more local businesswomen to access enterprise supports available to them in 2016.

More than 800 entrepreneurs attended LEO-run National Women’s Enterprise Day 2016 events all over the country this week.

Bernie Moloney, Assistant Head of Enterprise, LEO Limerick said: “We want local women entrepreneurs to truly believe in themselves and to succeed.  We are here to encourage and to help businesswomen in the country along their entrepreneurial journey.  The theme of this year’s National Women’s Enterprise Day was ‘road to success’ and at our event we heard inspiring stories from women who have achieved great success and who generously shared their stories.”

Minister of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor said it was heartening to see more women than ever seeking support from the LEOs.

“I welcome the fact that more female entrepreneurs are seeking advice and support with starting their own business.  Women have a huge amount to contribute to business in Ireland and are very important to our economy.  Female entrepreneurs are creating jobs right across the country in every town and village across Ireland creating innovative enterprises that are focused on exports, growth and job creation.  I want to encourage more women to set up businesses across our regions, with the help of their Local Enterprise Offices.  This event is a fantastic networking event which offers continued support to those female entrepreneurs thinking of starting a business and those developing and expanding their business.”

The Minister for Training, Skills and Innovation, John Halligan said the huge interest in this year’s National Women’s Enterprise Day certainly is an encouraging sign that more women are considering entrepreneurship as a career.

“I was delighted to support National Women’s Enterprise Day.  The events that took place around the country were a great platform for aspiring female entrepreneurs who learned from experienced businesswomen who shared their stories.  They got support, advice and inspiration to guide them in setting up their own businesses.  Encouraging more entrepreneurs to develop their business ideas is what we want to do so that jobs can be created across Ireland.  Earlier this year LEO Limerick established a new ‘Cluster Network’ for female entrepreneurs in Limerick City and County.  This Network is proving to be a huge success and is still growing.”

Looking ahead to the future, Bernie Moloney added: “Our National Women’s Enterprise Day event was a hugely important platform for aspiring female entrepreneurs.  By learning from experienced businesswomen, they now hopefully feel encouraged to develop their own business ideas to start their ‘road to success’.”

The full list of Regional Ambassadors for National Womens Enterprise Day, enlisted by the Local Enterprise Offices, were Hannah Wrixon of Last Minute Minders in Limerick (Mid-West Region), Audrey Gaffney of Audrey Gaffney Associates in Meath (Mid-East Region), Aisling Hanley of Keenwah Quinoa in Galway (West Region), Regina Bushell of Grovelands Childcare in Westmeath (Midlands Region), Rachel Doyle of the Arboretum in Carlow and Wicklow (South East Region), Nicola Byrne of 11890 and Cloud 90 in Dublin (Dublin Region), Valerie Kingston of Glenilen Farm in Cork (South West Region) and Margaret Reilly of CTR Manufacturing in Louth (Border Region).

National Womens Enterprise Day is an annual initiative of the Local Enterprise Offices and is supported by Enterprise Ireland and the Local Authorities Network.

For further information on the supports available to small businesses and start-ups, click here.
To read more on enterprise, click here.

Richard is a presenter, producer, songwriter and actor. He was named the Limerick Person of the Year (2011) and won an online award at the Metro Éireann Media and Multicultural Awards (2011) for promoting multi-culturalism online. Richard says that the ilovelimerick.com concept is very much a community driven project that aims to document life in Limerick. So, that in 20 years time people can look back and remember the events that were making the headlines.