Trade mission invites British food and drink brands to explore Irish export market


The March mission to the Republic of Ireland is one of five intensive international delegations run by the group this year, offering important subsidies from the private sector aimed at extending export experience to the smallest firms – allowing them to explore international trade to grow their business.

The Dublin trip on March 10-11, is a collaboration between Enterprise Nation and professional services firm, KPMG, international payment provider, PayPal and international delivery firm UPS and will focus on firms specialising in food manufacture and supply.

According to the UKTI, Ireland is the UK’s largest export market – and the largest for food and drink.

Emma Jones, founder of Enterprise Nation, said: “Ireland is on our doorstep, shares the same time zones  – and is experiencing an impressive economic recovery – with more than six per cent growth in GDP in the first three months of last year.

“There are strong trade links already established with a particular focus on food, so it’s a wonderful opportunity for the smallest firms to pick up advice and build solid Irish contracts to boost confidence and sales. As a first taste of the export world, Ireland is an ideal place to start.”

The two-day mission will give 40 British-based firms access to effective digital marketing techniques that specifically work for the Irish market with visits to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn; a face-to-face trade-matching event with Irish-based importers and relevant businesses; visits to big Irish brands including Diageo and a chance to hear from successful entrepreneurs that have cracked the Irish food supply market, as well as meet with buyers from stores and food giant, Sodexo.

Ten of the places will be awarded to new food & drink brands working with the Grocery Accelerator – the UK’s first dedicated food & drink Accelerator who mentor, connect and invest in new businesses. Now recruiting its third cohort, each business receives a business lifetime of support, £60k worth of funding and an intense initial 12m workshop programme.

Simon Lacey, co-founder of Grocery Accelerator said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Enterprise Nation on the inaugural Trade Mission to Dublin. This provides a unique opportunity for all of the businesses in the Grocery Accelerator family to build a greater understanding of the Irish market and at the same time pitch to buyers at two high profile retail events.”

After the Dublin mission has touched down, further trade delegations will explore export opportunities in Berlin in May, the US and Asia in the latter part of the year.

Enterprise Nation has already announced its collaboration with professional service firm KPMG to develop new products to support SMEs achieve greater internationalisation.  This builds upon the existing alliance between Enterprise Nation and KPMG Small Business Accounting, launched in March 2015, which already offers a package of accounting services, digital toolkits and events aimed at supporting SMEs at the very start of their growth journey.