Cork Enterprise Month: A Resounding Success

It’s official… Feedback and figures show that Cork Enterprise Month, which ran throughout March, was a resounding success!

Cork Enterprise Month was organised to highlight and celebrate the comprehensive range of Cork County & City Enterprise Board (CEB’s) initiatives in Cork in March and beyond.  A range of activities and events took place to promote and encourage entrepreneurship and innovation and help micro-enterprises thrive and develop.  The Cork City Enterprise Board (CCEB) reports they’ve had a tremendous response to the various activities and events they organised.

A number of training courses, which aim to advise, train and support, were run during March by the CCEB including: “Start Your Own Business” courses attended by 13 budding entrepreneurs.   For those already set up in business training in finance and sales & marketing through: a “Financial Management Programme”; and a “Cost Effective Marketing Programme” were offered by the Board in March.

Networking was another aspect of what the CEB’s offer that was promoted during Cork Enterprise Month.  Meeting new people and informing them of who you are and what you do is essential in raising the profile of your business, and the Network of Enterprising Women (NEW) provides business women in South Cork and Cork City with the opportunity to promote their products/services and gain advice from inspiring female entrepreneurs, at a series of ongoing events. 

Throughout March, there were a number of opportunities to register for Futurallia 2010, an International Networking Event that is taking place in Poitiers, France from 28th April until 1st May.  Futurallia Cork is a dynamic partnership presenting Cork to the World, and assisting innovative Cork companies to explore the international marketplace.  The event will be similar to CORKMEET 2009, where over 350 businesses came together from Cork, Ireland and overseas, last November to generate new business leads.  

Speaking about the networking opportunities with the CEBs, Dave Cody, CEO, Cork City Enterprise Board said “At a time when it appears more challenging than ever to trade, it is important that platforms are being laid down to support business.  Through the various events we offer and are associated with, not only will Cork business have the opportunity to trade and network amongst themselves, but also with businesses throughout world with international leads that may foster long term benefits for Cork business in general.”

For Second Level students, the CEB’s ran a Cork Schools Enterprise Programme that gives students the opportunity to set up and manage their own business.  Cork Enterprise Month saw the students compete against each other in the regional finals of the Programme and the winners of the regional heats will go on to represent their local Enterprise Board and their school at the national finals in Dublin on April 27th. 

Excitement, entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity were all at the forefront as XX Cork City Secondary Schools participated in the Cork City Finals which took place in CIT as part of their annual innovation day on March 19th.  Students from Christ the King School in Douglas, with their project “Star Struck” scooped the top prize at the Cork City Regional Final.  The students wrote and performed a series of anti-bullying plays in primary schools throughout Cork City to raise the awareness of the problem of bullying in schools.

A new event in 2010, the “Dragon’s Den” competition took place on March 15th, where students from 1st year to transition year pitched innovative ideas to four “dragons”.  The winners came from Regina Mundi College and Coláiste an Spioráid Naomh.

The CEBs supported a number of activities and events during Cork Enterprise Month, which foster and nurture entrepreneurial spirit in Third Level institutions.  Events included INNOV8@UCC Week from March 8th to 12th, sponsored by the Cork City Enterprise Board and presented by the UCC Entrepreneurial & Social Society. 

Now in its 9th year, the CIT Prize for Innovation Showcase & Awards Ceremony took place on March 19th.  The aim of the competition is to create an entrepreneurial climate within the institute and to encourage staff and students to take the first step in furthering innovations or business ideas they may have.  14 Third Level teams competed for cash prizes for inventions and business ideas judged to be the most creative, novel, innovative, and likely to succeed in the marketplace.

Commenting on the success of Cork Enterprise Month, Ita Murphy, Training Co-Ordinator/Business Adviser, Cork City Enterprise Board said “The activities and events on offer with the CEBs are a vital component in developing the business skills and expertise of local entrepreneurs. So much happens throughout the year in association with the CEBs, but Cork Enterprise Month gave us the opportunity to stop and take account of all the activities and events that take place which nurture entrepreneurial spirit on an ongoing basis.”

For further information on all of the events and activities taking place on an ongoing basis, visit or contact your local Enterprise Board.  Cork County & City Enterprise Boards are funded under Ireland’s EU Structural Funds Programme 2007-2013 with funding from the Exchequer and the European Regional Development Fund.

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