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Be Brave with Local Enterprise Week in Donegal

Businesses across Donegal are being encouraged to take advantage of the array of events and topics on offer at this year’s Local Enterprise Week, which runs from Monday 4th to Friday 8th March. Local Enterprise Week is a collaboration between Local Enterprise Office Donegal and its partners.

In total 19 separate events will make up Local Enterprise Week 2023, with partners including Alpha Innovation, ATU Donegal, European Union, Donegal County Council, Data2Sustain, Data Value Hub, Donegal Women In Business Network, Donegal Engineering Network, Enterprising Women, Enterprise Ireland, Enterprise Europe Network, Ernact, Inishowen Development Partnership, Inishowen Innovation, Intellectual Property Office of Ireland, Letterkenny Chamber, Steer,  Food Coast Donegal, Údarás NaGaeltachta, WestBIC, WiSAR Lab all contributing to the comprehensive schedule for the week.

Commenting on this year’s programme of events, Brenda Hegarty, Head of Enterprise Donegal said: “The theme for this year’s Local Enterprise Week is ‘Be Brave’, and this year’s events will inspire, empower, and equip entrepreneurs and business leaders with the tools, insights and strategies needed to embark on bold ventures, overcome obstacles, and achieve sustainable success. Working closely with our stakeholders, we have put together a comprehensive programme of events taking place from Monday, 4th to Friday, 8th March, that will inspire and help fuel people’s entrepreneurial instincts. From our ‘Taking Your Business to the Next Level’ to ‘Communicating with Impact’ and ‘Stories of Tweed in Southwest Donegal’ and ‘Inspirational Leadership Lessons’, this Local Enterprise Week has everything required to inspire Donegal businesses to ‘Be Brave.

What to expect during Local Enterprise Week 2024:

The official launch of Local Enterprise Week Donegal takes place on Monday, 4th March in the Radisson Blu Hotel, Letterkenny with guest speaker Richard Curran, one of Ireland’s best-known journalists. Richard will be joined by a panel of local business experts, Eleanor Hanna, of Hanna Hats, Martin McGuinness of MMG Ocean, and Donagh Kelly of Circet, who will share their stories of starting and growing businesses from Donegal.

On Tuesday, 5th March, “The Food Coast Donegal Producers Showcase” takes place at the Silver Tassie Hotel, hosted by Darragh McCullough of RTE’s ‘Ear to The Ground’.

The event kicks off with keynote speaker Kwanghi Chan and a panel discussion with Siobhán Ní Gháirbhith of St Tola Cheese, Willie Creman of Filligans and Eugene Gallen of Bon Appetite, who will share their insights into the culinary and consumer trends that will help Donegal food businesses innovate and grow. Niamh Ruane of Musgraves will give the buyers perspective of opportunities in the consumer food market.

On Wednesday, 6th March, “Stepping Up to Export” will take place in the Radisson Hotel, while Thursday’s event focuses on sustainability with a free online “Sustainability Kickstarter Workshop.”

On the final day of Local Enterprise Week, Friday 8th March, “The Business of Leadership – Lessons from Sport” event will take place in the Mount Errigal Hotel. Household names from the fields of GAA and rugby, Jim McGuinness, Cora Staunton, and Bernard Jackman will share some of the experiences and sacrifices that made them champions in their field and the parallels their leadership, sporting approach and achievements have in the business world.

Also on Friday, Donegal Women in Business Network will host a cross border event to celebrate International Women’s Day.

Partner events during Local Enterprise Week include ‘Implementing Digital and Green Solutions in Your Tourism Business: Challenging Mindsets’ on Monday, 4th March.

This talk is targeted at tourism SMEs and will examine trends and themes in digital and green innovations. On Wednesday, a networking event will take place in Harvey’s Point Hotel on ‘Tourism Tomorrow, Crafting a Greener Future for Donegal.’

This event is the ideal opportunity for anyone working in hospitality in Donegal to meet, network and collaborate.

There will also be an online event held on Wednesday that’s ideal for service-based SMEs or sole traders, ‘Pricing and Defining your Serviced Based Business, a Masterclass with Beth Gladstone’. On Thursday, "Navigating Disruptive Tech in Manufacturing", will see industry leaders and innovators converge to delve into the transformative power of cutting-edge technologies in the manufacturing sector. On Friday, there will be an opportunity to learn the practical applications of ChatGPT in the CoLab, ATU Donegal.

Local Enterprise Week is the perfect opportunity for businesses to dip into a specific area of interest and gather information on a topic that may be relevant to their business now or in the future. Booking is essential. 

See the full brochure of events throughout Local Enterprise Week 2024 

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