Sixty female entrepreneurs, who run businesses with a combined turnover in excess of €44 million, gathered at the end of March to attend a Going for Growth National Forum in Co. Kildare.
Fiona Egan of Sasta Fitness Franchise Ltd, based in Carrick-on-Shannon was selected from several hundred applications to take part in the current cycle of Going for Growth, a support initiative for female entrepreneurs. Between them, the businesswomen currently employ over 650 people and almost a third of them are already exporting.
Currently in its sixth cycle in Ireland, Going for Growth is supported and funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) and the Department of Justice and Equality under the Equality for Women Measure 2010-2013, and by Enterprise Ireland under its Women 4 International Growth programme.
The monthly round table meetings have already commenced and the focus of the National Forum was to bring all the participants together for networking and developmental workshops. The focus is firmly on the growth agenda. The female entrepreneurs who attended explored how they can further strengthen their enterprises in order to achieve their ambitious growth targets. The participants have set targets to achieve combined sales of €320 million over the next five years. If these ambitious targets are met, they expect to bring their combined employment to 1,400 by 2019.
Notable Lead Entrepreneurs who participated in the National Forum include Colette Twomey, Clonakilty Black Pudding; Elaine Coughlan, Atlantic Bridge; Fidelma McGuirk, Taxback.com; Mary Ann O’Brien, Lily O’ Brien Chocolates and Susan Spence, SoftCo.
For further information, log on to www.goingforgrowth.com