Energy Efficiency Seminar
AIB and Dundalk Chamber hosted and energy efficiency seminar for SMEs in Louth and surrounding areas. AIB announces €100 million lending programme to allow SMEs invest in energy-saving projects.
AIB and Dundalk today hosted an energy seminar for SMEs in the Louth area who want to drive down their energy costs and increase their competitiveness. Over 150 SMEs attended the seminar which was held in the Bellinghamcastle Hotel and speakers included AIB’s Head of Energy and Clean Technologies, Ray O’Neill and on behalf of SEAI, Declan Meally. The theme was helping businesses to reduce their energy costs and improve profitability. AIB research shows that energy accounts for approximately 9% of operating costs, averaging nearly €70,000 for the typical SME. To support SMEs invest in energy saving measures such as heating, lighting, cooling systems, etc., AIB recently launched a €100 million fund for lending to allow SMEs to radically lower their energy bills. This fund is unique in that the bank will take into account the projected savings from energy efficiency projects when calculating the borrower’s repayment capacity. Qualifying SMEs can also avail of discounted funding supported by the European Investment Bank (EIB).
AIB’s Head of Energy and Clean Technologies said “The opportunity for Irish SMEs to reduce energy costs is enormous. With our new Energy Efficiency Finance we want to help SMEs keep cash in their business and cut costs. Locally trading and export focused companies can increase their competitiveness by tackling energy costs head on. Reducing fundamental consumption in a sustainable way is achievable."
Head of North East Business Centre Kenneth Rooney “We want to help our customers in every way possible and assisting them invest in energy efficient initiatives is key to drive down costs and remain competitive in what remains a challenging trading environment. Every SME can benefit from reviewing their energy consumption and using available supports such as the SEAI. I would encourage SMEs to call into any branch, to talk to our expert staff about financing projects that will get them the savings on their bills.”
President of the Dundalk Chamber, Paddy Matthews said: “We are delighted to host this event for our members as this is an area where SMEs can take small practical steps and make real savings. We welcome AIB’s announcement of €100million fund and look forward to working with all our members in this regard". On behalf of SEAI, Declan Meally said: “I would urge all businesses to examine their energy outgoings in their businesses. We have found that most businesses can make 11% savings in their energy usage without spending a lot of money. The rewards are substantial and SEAI is there to assist every step of the way. New finance offerings, like those being launched today, make it even easier to act and are a welcome addition to the market.”
For further information, please contact:
AIB Press Officer
Tel: 01 6414141 or 087 9850445
Dundalk Driving Tourism Forward at Dundalk Stadium
Dundalk Driving Tourism Forward Event took place on Friday 28th February the event raised funds which will be reinvested into tourism initiatives in the North-East region.
Tourism Providers Presentation
The Dundalk Tourism Committee was founded with the objectives of promoting Dundalk and its greater environs as a tourism destination and to provide a ‘meeting of minds’ for all stakeholders in the region to generate ideas and expertise. The committee is entirely voluntary and given the creative inputs thus far has generated ideas to produce tangible events and products that will drive footfall to the region within 2014 onwards.
Giro d’Italia Dundalk route and sprint finalised
The Giro d’Italia route through Dundalk has been finalised following a visit by Irish organiser Darach McQuaid of Shadetree Sports, along with his Italian colleagues and event organisers.
On Sunday, May 11th Giro d’Italia cyclists will sprint into Dundalk. The race for the coveted Red Jersey will pick up pace as the cyclists approach Dundalk and will end at St Nicholas’ Green Church, meaning that spectators will get to see cyclists taking a gentler pace up through Church St, Clanbrassil St, the Market Square, Francis St, Park St, Dublin St and onto the Dublin Road. The Giro logistics crew were welcomed by to Dundalk by Cathaoirleach Eamonn O’Boyle, Town Clerk Frank Pentony, and Cuchulainn Cycling Club’s Pat O’Shaughnessy. Also putting their best foot forward for the town were Fiona Cunningham of Dundalk BIDS and Dundalk Tourist Officer Sinead Roche.
Pat O’Shaughnessy said that the crew were impressed by what they saw as they took a walk along the Clanbrassil Street and pinpointed locations for the sprint finish.“Dundalk will be the place where thousands can gather at the Market Square, see the only sprint in the Southern leg of the race approach Dundalk on the Big Screen and anticipate the competitors’ arrival through the town centre. “It’s going to be an amazing sight given the speed of the sprint in contrast to the much slower pace they’ll cycle at through the remainder of the town route".
Speaking following the Giro d’Italia crew visit, Cathaoirleach Eamonn O’Boyle said: “Dundalk is in the enviable position of being the only town centre to feature prominently on the Irish route. Everyone involved in Giro Dundalk, including myself is delighted that the cyclists will now travel the full length of the town, highlighting Dundalk on a global platform.”
Giro d’Italia route for Sunday May 11th: Starts in Armagh via Keady, over Keady mountain, Newtownhamilton, Lislea, Longfield Rd, and into Louth on the Carrickasticken Road, on its journey past Forkhill, into Kilcurry and joining the R177 Armagh Road, onto Lisdoo and into Dundalk Town Centre. Leaving Dundalk, it travels on the R132 via Castlebellingham, Dunleer and Drogheda to Dublin.
Pink Pink Pink Giro d'Italia
We are thrilled to welcome the 97th Giro d’Italia to Dundalk on Sunday the 11th of May 2014. Three stages, 22 teams and the only southern sprint stage to be held on the streets of Dundalk Town Centre.
The tour spends Friday around Belfast, Saturday up around Glens of Antrim and Causeway.
Armagh, Dundalk, then on OLD DUBLIN ROAD Castlebellingham, (feeding station but still moving at speed) Dunleer and Drogheda finishing in Dublin City
The only HOT SPOT on the Sunday is CLANBRASSIL STREET. It’s a sprint within the race and is always spectacular.
We would encourage your business to get in to the spirit of the Giro by doing any of the following
- Put up flags on your business ….. Irish to the LEFT or above all others.
- Put up hanging baskets and pots- think PINK the official colour of the Giro.
- Email in your special offers to
and we will upload them on to the site and our social media pages.
This is an excellent business opportunity for you and the town.
Come and get on board this wonderful event that puts Dundalk on the map/ All ideas welcomed just email me to
or call me on Tel: 042 9336744
Facebook and Twitter Seminar a great success!
Record attendance on a Workshop on how to use Facebook and Twitter to promote your business organized by Dundalk Chamber & Bank of Ireland. Dundalk Chamber of Commerce in association with Bank of Ireland hosted a Workshop on Facebook & Twitter and how you can use it to promote your business in the Crowne Plaza.
Billy Kehoe (Branch Manager of Bank of Ireland), Paddy Malone (PRO Dundalk Chamber), Paddy Matthews (President of Dundalk Chamber) and Billy Mahon (of Superior Internet Marketing).
Over 160 delegates attended a very information event and learnt many tips from Billy Mahon of Superior Internet Marketing. Paddy Matthews President of Dundalk Chamber stressed the importance of these tools and that businesses need to be up to speed on the use of them in order to get their business noticed.
Billy Kehoe , Branch Manager, Bank of Ireland, Dundalk said “We are delighted to be involved in initiatives like this social media workshop that support local SMEs. At Bank of Ireland our key objective is to be the number one Bank for business in Ireland. We have a wide range of activities in place that support SMEs such as our bi-annual Enterprise Weeks and credit clinics as we look to position ourselves as ‘Ireland’s Enterprise Bank’. I encourage all start-ups and SMEs in the area to visit us in the Dundalk branch to find out more about how we can help their business grow.”
During the half day morning workshop organized by Dundalk Chamber of Commerce and Bank of Ireland , attendees were shown how to harness the power of word-of-mouth marketing using two of the biggest social media platforms on the internet today. Facebook and Twitter. This is just one of a series of seminars which the Chamber is organizing. For more information on upcoming events log on to www.dundalk.ie or call Brenda in Dundalk Chamber on Tel: 042 9336343 or email
See PDF for Social Media Presentation
Worklink is a volunteer-led organisation which aims to help tackle unemployment by supporting employers and unemployed jobseekers (www.worklink.ie). Over the past year our service has developed so that we now run coaching clinics in job seeking, CV preparation and interview skills direct to jobseekers. This is in addition to our work helping employers to avail of internship schemes.
Worklink has an established presence in Dundalk and Dublin, combined with new regional groups in Cork and Limerick. Over the last few months we have run several successful events including a 6 session evening course aimed at jobseekers, starting with helping the client to know their skills, through to preparing them for interview.
We are looking for potential volunteers who have experience of HR management, career coaching, experience of CV or interview preparation, or knowledge of what employers are looking for in employees. Volunteers can get involved on a regular basis or as a one-off. We are also interested in teaming up with employers to offer coaching: for example by running one of our workshops in an employer’s facilities, and advertising it as a joint event. Over the coming months we hope to expand the services we offer employers and would be interested in any ideas or inputs from local businesses.
Santa run raises €61,000 for local charities
Dundalk Chamber of Commerce has released the financial results of the Santa Run which took place on Friday the 29th November and the Charity Lunch in December.
Santa Fun Run Committee with the deserving child David O'Hare
The events proved a huge success in getting Christmas off on the right foot, creating a real feel good factor for the town which will continue well into 2014. There was of course a second part to the Christmas run and that was the Charity lunch which took place in the Crowne Plaza on Friday the 13th December 2013.
This shows that we raised just under €100,000 and after expenses we distributed €61,000. Five charities each received €10,000 with a further fourteen charities receiving between €1,000 and €500. There were also further donations to worthy individuals including deserving child David O’Hare who was given a free trip to Euro Disney for him and his family.
The whole town took part in this event and the Chamber would like to thank all for their participation. While we may not repeat setting the world record we do intend to have the Santa Run in the future.
A special word of thanks must go to Jimmy Cumiskey, Michael Farrell, the organizing committee and their superb team of elves, all of whom worked well beyond what could be expected.
Tain Walking Festival
Táin Walking Festival kicks off tourism season in The Land of Legends. The beautiful Cooley Peninsula in County Louth are hosting the 7th annual Táin Walking festival on February 28th – March 2nd launching the counties 2014 full event calendar!
The festival has become a popular early fixture in Ireland’s annual walking calendar with the Cooley Peninsula boasting some of the best walking routes in the country. Still considered relatively ‘young’, the festival attracts walkers from as far away as England and Holland as well as throughout the Republic and Northern Ireland.
‘We have a fantastic walking product here and the festival is a great way to showcase it. Walking remains a rapidly growing market with more overseas visitors coming to Ireland to engage in hiking and walking than any other outdoor activity. We now that once people find this magical place, possibly through planning a day’s walking, they always want to come back’ Frances Taylor, Cooley Peninsula Tourism Officer. ‘The opening of the Coastal walking/cycling path this year will substantially enhance the tourism product here and we are fortunate to have so much more to offer to the visitors when they plan their trip. Its easy access means it is extremely attractive to day visitors, adventure seekers, as family holidays or for romantic breakaways.
This Irish European Destination of Excellence, is based just one hour from Dublin and Belfast, boasting the most breathtaking scenery on the north coast of this Island. It is steeped in heritage with a remarkable amount of history, myths and legends. The mountains hold the haunting footsteps of Cuchulainn, Maebh and the battle for the Brown Bull of Cooley, is the resting place of Irish giant Finn Mc Cool, and it is the official home of the last leprechauns of. In 2010, the area received European recognition as a Special Protected Area for Leprechauns under the EU Habitats Directive. Three weeks after the walking festival the ‘National Leprechaun Hunt’ takes place where thousands descend on the mountain with prospecting licences to hunt for leprechauns.
The 2014 event programme will offer a range of nine graded walks to suit various levels of fitness and experience. The spectacular Night Walk will open the festival on the Friday evening beginning at the Lumpers Pub, taking walkers over the saddle of Slieve Foy mountain. A strictly Grade 1 walk, the hike in the dark will deliver outstanding views of The Cooley Peninsula and Carlingford Lough lit by the night sky.
The festival is delighted to introduce a walk delivered by the leading archelogist Dr Vanessa Ryan from the Mourne Cooley Gullion Geotourism project. Another new highlight is the Siúlóid as Gaelige which takes you into the previous gaeltacht area of Omeath offering a bi lingual guided walk and talk of fascinating stories from years gone by. Slightly easier options include a guided walk of the medieval town of Carlingford and after dark, weary walkers can wind down with some lively weekend entertainment.
Day tickets for the festival cost €10 - €15 or €25 for the whole weekend. Preregistration is recommended for most walks - closing date to preregister is Feb 26th, 2014. Full details on the walks and registration information can be found on www.louthholidays.com or tel 042- 937 3033. Email:
The 2014 Search For Ireland’s Leading Entrepreneurs
Nominations for the 2014 EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ programme officially opened last night as EY kicked off their nationwide search for Ireland’s leading entrepreneurs.
Over 100 entrepreneurs attended the national launch event held at the EY offices on Harcourt Street, Dublin, where they heard about the significant benefits of being part of the programme from the 2013 overall winner, Patrick Joy (Suretank) and 2013 finalist Caroline Keeling (Keelings).
Known globally as the most prestigious business accolade for entrepreneurs, the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ Ireland programme has transformed over the past 16 years into an intensive development programme for the best entrepreneurs across the island of Ireland. “With the recent exit from the bailout, Ireland has emerged from economic austerity to a business landscape with sizeable opportunity” said Partner-in-Charge of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™, Frank O’Keeffe. “Our mission for this year’s programme is to assist our 2014 finalists and wider community of entrepreneurs in building a strategy that will keep them ahead of the curve and truly prepare them for the opportunities that economic recovery will bring, in Ireland and globally.”
As part of the programme, this year’s 24 finalists will join a group of 150 entrepreneurs, all previous finalists and winners of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™, for a week-long CEO Retreat taking place between Seattle and Vancouver. The intensive week will include world-class executive education sessions as well as master classes with renowned entrepreneurs and CEOs of some of the world’s biggest multinationals. “The CEO Retreat will be centred on ensuring Ireland’s best entrepreneurs are fit for future growth and job creation, enabling them to step back from their fast-paced lifestyles to look at their future in the most constructive and strategic way possible” commented O’Keeffe.
The awards programme is divided into three categories - Emerging, Industry and International - with 8 finalists chosen in each category by the independent panel of judges. Chaired by Padraig Ó Céidigh and made up of former EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ winners, the independent judging panel includes Denis O’Brien, Anne Heraty, Liam Casey, Jerry Kennelly, Terry Clune, Brian Long, Ed Harty, Michael Carey, Pat McDonagh and representatives from InterTradeIreland, Enterprise Ireland and Invest Northern Ireland. Open to high-performing entrepreneurs across the island of Ireland from every sector, the programme accepts submissions from entrepreneurs of different growth stages as well as nominations from the general public.
Speaking at last night’s national launch event, Frank O’Keeffe urged entrepreneurs to put themselves forward as potential nominees. “The benefits of being involved in this programme aren’t limited to the winners. Every finalist is inducted into our influential community of over 350 previous EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ finalists from across the island. This close-knit network of entrepreneurs provides unrivalled support and mentorship from the very best in their peer group as well as access to a worldwide network that is indispensable to any entrepreneur with global ambitions.”
Individuals who wish to put themselves forward or nominate an entrepreneur with their consent, can fill out the online nomination form at www.eoy.ie or call the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ team for further information on 01 221 2250. The deadline for nominations is Monday 17 March 2014. The EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ Programme is supported by Enterprise Ireland, InterTradeIreland, Invest Northern Ireland, The Irish Times and Newstalk.
Giro d’Italia logistics crew to visit Dundalk
Giro d’Italia organisers will visit Dundalk later this month, Cuchulainn Cycling Club Chairman Pat O’Shaughnessy has confirmed. The Italian delegation will travel the entire route of the Irish leg of the race from Belfast to Dublin and will visit Dundalk for a time where they will follow the route up through the Dundalk Town Centre, and meet with local organisers headed by Dundalk Town Council’s Frank Pentony along with Pat O’Shaughnessy. The Giro d’Italia has its ‘Big Start’ in Belfast on Friday, May 9th and arrives in Dundalk on Sunday May 11th en route to Dublin.
Following negotiations, Dundalk has secured the only sprint of the southern Ireland leg of the race which will also go towards the red jersey. The town has also been confirmed as a TV Hub, ensuring live streaming of the race to a global audience of 250million people and will also feature a tourism package including Cuchulainn’s Castle.
Speaking this week Pat O’Shaughnessy said the visit will help local organisers get an idea of what the town can expect from Giro. “We have yet to be given a specific date or time but we know that the delegation will be in Dundalk for a number of hours at some point between February 24-27th. The visit is an ideal opportunity to hear from the logistics crews on how they will be preparing for the event and what needs to be in place for May 11th and also to outline how Dundalk is preparing for the arrival of the world’s second biggest cycling race. It is such a huge event on an international scale but at least this visit will allow relationships to be forged with the Italian crews ahead of the May event.”
Frank Pentony, Town Clerk, Dundalk Town Council said he is looking forward to meeting with the Italian delegation and getting things underway for Giro Dundalk. "With a live global audience of 250million, this is a phenomenal opportunity for Dundalk. I look forward to meeting with the Italian delegation on their visit to Dundalk and hearing how we can get the most out of Dundalk’s involvement in what is one of the world’s main sporting events of 2014.”