The Meet West initiative, which was launched last week, will be the largest business development event in the west in 2011. It is a collaborative effort of four local authorities, three county enterprise boards, the enterprise development agencies, and chambers of commerce in the Galway, Mayo, and Roscommon region.
Speaking at the launch of the event in Áras an Chontae, Castlebar, Councillor Austin Francis O’Malley, Cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council, praised the organisers for their foresight in organising this event and in seeking to assist companies and the owners of small businesses expand their customer base in these difficult economic times.
“I urge the owners of small business in Mayo to embrace this opportunity,” he said.
Peter Hynes, county manager and chairman of Mayo County Enterprise Board, thanked those involved in organising the event which will take place in the Galway Bay Hotel on November 21 and 22.
The objective of the event is to bring together 300 to 400 companies based in these three counties over two days to facilitate the development of greater business links for these companies and further business opportunities for them locally, regionally, or internationally.
The first day of the event will consist of a conference and workshops. The speakers at the conference will be recognised leaders in indigenous and FDI companies in Ireland and they will be asked to focus their inputs on outlining how they operate internationally successful businesses from the west coast of Ireland. It will also include an input from the American Chamber of Commerce in Ireland.
The workshops in the afternoon will have the following four themes and will provide practical demonstrations for companies to enter into new markets: A guide to procurement by the public sector in Ireland; A guide to procurement by the private sector in Ireland; A guide to tax credits in research and development; and Patents, how and when to use them.
This will be followed by the conference networking dinner at which the guest speaker will be the Taoiseach Enda Kenny.
The second day of the event will involve pre-arranged networking meetings for the companies registered. The objective of this element is to identify business opportunities between companies based in the region that would not previously have known each other or worked together. Specialised software and networking event organisers are being employed to facilitate this element of the event and it will introduce many delegates to a new style of business development.
This will be a regional event that will be held annually over the next four years. A key objective of this event is to highlight the range of companies that are operating successfully in the region and create a momentum for further economic growth.
For further information on this event or information on how you can get involved log onto www.meetwest.ie or contact Mayo County Enterprise Board on 094 904 7587 or County Development Board on 094 902 4444.