Biggest-ever Local Enterprise Village built for National Ploughing Championships 2015
From food manufacturers to beauty products, water testing kits to electric heaters; a record number of small businesses are temporarily re-locating to the ‘Local Enterprise Village’, at this week’s National Ploughing Championships.
All 31 Local Enterprise Offices, which are part of the Local Authority network, are supporting small businesses at the Ploughing, representing sectors such as food, retail, tourism, manufacturing, energy and sport.
Up to 200,000 visitors are expected to make the journey to the 800 acre site in Ratheniska in County Laois. In 2014, the National Ploughing Championships generated an estimated €39million in sales for Irish businesses.
Speaking ahead of the official opening of Local Enterprise Village, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton T.D said: “Ireland’s agri-food sector is performing very strongly and as a result, small businesses are benefitting, with huge opportunities for growth and job creation. The National Ploughing Championships is an amazing event that provides a massive opportunity for businesses and State Agencies to reach potential clients and customers, and this initiative will help us take advantage of that. I’ve already met a number of the 83 companies that are be exhibiting at the Local Enterprise Village and I’m impressed by their ambition and drive to succeed. I would encourage anyone who has an interest in starting or growing their business to pop into the Local Enterprise Village to meet with the team and get information that may assist their business”.
The Chair of the network of Local Enterprise Offices, Kieran Comerford, said: “The Local Enterprise Village grows bigger every year and is home to more than 80 small Irish businesses. As well as giving the public the chance to meet the person behind the business, it also gives small business owners a real opportunity to boost sales and break into new markets.”
National Ploughing Association Managing Director, Anna May McHugh said: “There is no doubt that the entrepreneurial spark is alive and well in Ireland and it is a fantastic opportunity for these small businesses inside the Local Enterprise Village to showcase their products to the large number of visitors that Ploughing attracts. This is very positive for rural Ireland and the wider economy.”
The network of Local Enterprise Offices is also running a social media competition, inviting participants to post a ‘Tractor Selfie’, using #TractorLeo on Twitter. The prize package is made up of products, services and vouchers supplied by the companies within the Local Enterprise Village, to a total value of €3,500.
Organised by the National Ploughing Association, the 84th National Ploughing Championships are taking place at Ratheniska, Stradbally in County Laois.
Doors to the Local Enterprise Village are open from Tuesday, September 22nd to Thursday, September 24th at Block 3, Row 25 at Stand number 430. Further details on the companies inside the Local Enterprise Village are available from www.localenterprise.ie