The Community Enterprise Centres in the Western region are shaping up for growth.

This Tuesday, enterprise centres from Donegal to South Galway gathered in Claremorris, County Mayo where the WDC in conjunction with NACEC provided a platform to discuss the opportunities and challenges of operating an Enterprise Centre in the region.  It was imperative this discussion took place as we are a region where many new jobs are classified as self-employed, demonstrating the entrepreneurial culture, mindset and opportunity to innovate in the region.  According to the WDC policy team, self-employment is a more important source of jobs in the region than elsewhere, with 1 in 5 working people in the region self-employed, compared with 1 in 6 in the rest of Ireland.     ‘People are having to create their own jobs,’ according to Ian Brannigan, CEO(a)WDC ‘and with 65,000 people working for themselves in the Western Region, we value self-employment as a source of jobs growth which is central to the region’s future.

With the opening of the Porter Shed in Galway City on Monday and this  regional enterprise centres meet up on Tuesday, there is an appetite to drive further support, energy and coordination across our network of top class regional facilities.  The Western Region provides entrepreneurs with the opportunity to operate in a connected, smart, professional landscape as well as benefit from a rich quality of life, clean environment and where heritage is a valued.

“A network of purpose built and investor friendly property solutions for business across the Atlantic Economic Corridor is central to the growth of enterprise in the Western Region and future economic development” added Kevin Thompstone, Director of Shannon Chamber and economic development consultant.  Joe Kelly, Chairman of NACEC and Manager of IRD Kiltimagh added “Community Enterprise Centres offer a bespoke local and community led response to a job creation in a particular area.  Businesses can start-up, survive, develop and prosper in a low risk environment where self-employment and job creation is valued. With about 4000 jobs currently domiciled in the 120 NACEC Member Community Enterprise Centres nationally, these centres play a pivotal role in the regions ability to innovate and facilitate indigenous businesses with a significant job creation dimension.”




Clodagh Barry, Regional Development, Western Development Commission, 086 0424857

Pauline White, Policy Analyst, Western Development Commission, 086 832 8055

Food On The Edge returns to Galway for 2016

Following on for the huge success of the inaugural Food on the Edge symposium in 2015, a stellar lineup of speakers has already been announced for 2016. Last year’s event held in Eyre Square in the heart of Galway city in October, saw 40 of the best international chefs attend The Food On The Edge symposium listened to intently by over 350 people on each day. Audience members included food enthusiasts, chefs, restaurateurs and some of Ireland’s biggest names including Darina Allen, Dylan McGrath, Neven Maguire and a host of others who cited it as an unmissable and inspirational food learning event for anyone interested in food and how we eat. Sally and John McKenna of the McKenna Guides awarded Food On The Edge with Food Event of The Year 2015.

Symposium founder JP McMahon says that the inaugural Food on the Edge 2015 surpassed all his expectations, and “it was an incredible almost surreal experience. Each chef was given the opportunity to deliver topics that centred on the future of food – they discussed their ideas, shared their fears, their dreams, their dreads and regrets from their careers. There was a core theme, however, which resonated strongly across the two days and that was ‘responsibility’. Responsibility in the way we source food, waste food, fish for food and supply food was passionately debated”.

JP says that the speakers are chosen for their passion, drive, and their ability to inspire chefs around the world. “They are leaders that we look up to for inspiration. It is important for us to create a sense of continuity. Rather than only invite new chefs to discuss the future of food, each year a number of past speakers will return to reflect on their previous presentation and assess the change or development of their thought and practice”. The exciting line-up continues to build; more speakers are included this year with a new addition of Expert Panel Discussions. Speakers already confirmed for this year’s Food on the Edge include Daniel Burns, currently “one of the hottest chefs in New York city” who owns Luksus; Shaun Hill, who owns the renowned Michelin Star restaurant The Walnut Tree in Wales and Tim Hollingsworth who recently opened the three star Michelin restaurant Otium in Los Angeles.

The exciting and prolific Massimo Bottura, the Italian restaurateur and chef patron of Osteria Francescana, a three-Michelin-star restaurant based in Modena, Italy will also be speaking and giving a presentation on the future of food.

The two day event will take place again in Galway City, ticket price includes lunch on both days, entry to Monday night party where audience gets to meet and mingle with speakers. Early bird tickets available until July proced at €350, normal price €400 are Selling out fast at

Full List of Confirmed Food On The Edge Speakers for 2016: with many more to be confirmed.

Bord Iascaigh Mhara Announce ‘Landmark’ National Seafood Conference for Galway

Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM), the Seafood Development Agency, today announced an exceptional line up of speakers for the ‘BIM National Seafood Conference – Global Insights, Irish Opportunity’ event at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Galway on the 30th June.

This full day conference and networking event will launch the annual Ocean Wealth and SeaFest events that take place in Galway from the 1st – 3rd July and brings together leading experts and global representatives from the national and international seafood and agri-business circuit, government and academia. It offers delegates the opportunity to hear first-hand expert analysis, on the thinking and the policies currently at the forefront of seafood development worldwide.

Moderated by experienced broadcaster and author, Olivia O’Leary; delegates can expect to take away valuable business insights from speakers including Mary Shelman, former Director of the Agribusiness Programme in Harvard Business School, Malcolm Beveridge, Head of Aquaculture, FAO Rome, Jean Jacques VandeHeede, AC Nielsen Europe and Aidan O’Driscoll, Secretary General of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

Tara McCarthy, Chief Executive of BIM said; ‘As the global demand for healthy protein continues to increase; seafood is in a unique position. It delivers on every macro driver from health, environment, and quality to convenience. This conference is about creating the long term vision for our seafood industry. It is an opportunity for all our stakeholders from fishermen to processors to play an integral role in shaping the future direction of the industry and that of their own company’

The Conference programme covers presentations and discussions on market intelligence, consumer thinking, the challenges facing the global seafood supply and insight into potential synergies within the Irish seafood sector, among other timely topics.

The afternoon programme offers a range of structured breakout sessions that will facilitate dialogue on transforming knowledge into action and finding workable solutions to today’s pressing challenges. The sessions will focus on the four key priorities for the industry: Sustainability, Competitiveness, Innovation and Skills. Each sector of the industry from fishermen to processors to fish farmers will find a session that appeals and is relevant to their business from ‘Fishing profitably with zero discards’, ‘Repositioning your company and products to maximise value’, ‘Demonstrate sustainability or be locked-out’ and ‘Working in seafood – a career for life’

After a busy and productive event, networking will continue in the evening at the prestigious Maritime Industry Awards in the hotel. The awards aim to recognise excellence across the Maritime Industry and BIM are proud to support two new categories this year – the ‘Seafood Sustainability Award’ and ‘Seafood Business Innovation Award’. To enter and/or attend the Maritime Industry Awards, please visit – the deadline for entries is the 6th May.

Registration for the BIM National Seafood Conference is free but early booking is advised as spaces are limited. Book now

Galway 1916 Exhibition

The Galway 1916 Exhibition runs from 23rd of March to 13th April in the Connacht Tribune Print Works, featuring works by over 30 artists. Entrance is free

Artist Noel Molloy will be exhibiting two works , a video titled “ Three Colours Green White Orange; September 100 Years Later 2013”  and photographic works “ GREEN WHITE ORANGE” .The works relate to The 1916 Rising.


W B Yeats September 1913

What need you, being come to sense,

But fumble in a greasy till

And add the halfpence to the pence

And prayer to shivering prayer, until

You have dried the marrow from the bone;

For men were born to pray and save:

Romantic Ireland’s dead and gone,

It’s with O’Leary in the grave.


Galway City

60 New Technology Jobs for Galway

US Company Ipswitch, which develops easy to try, buy and use IT Monitoring and Security software, today announced it will establish an EMEA (Europe Middle East and Africa) support and operations centre in Galway, expecting to create about 60 jobs over five years.

Ipswitch’s new office opening is a critical part of the company’s growth strategy in EMEA. Ipswitch is establishing research and development, sales and technical support teams to help better serve local customers and grow market share in the region. Ipswitch will also locate R&D and product development teams in Galway to provide capability specific to the EMEA region. The move will enable Ipswitch to greatly increase its support for its channel partners and customers across Europe in local languages and time zones.

The development is supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation through IDA Ireland.

The privately owned company which has its headquarters in Lexington, Massachusetts, employs over 300 people in offices in the US, Europe, Asia and Latin America.

The company’s software has been installed on more than 150,000 networks in 168 countries, with customers including Hamleys, NHS Wales, Cambridgeshire County Council and Community Integrated Care. Ipswitch already has Research & Development centres in Germany, in Atlanta and Augusta, Georgia as well as in Madison, Wisconsin.

Ipswitch IT Management software provides secure control over business transactions, applications and infrastructure. The vendor’s unified infrastructure and applications monitoring software provides end-to-end insight, and is staggeringly flexible and simple to deploy. Its information security and managed file transfer solutions enable secure, automated and compliant business transactions and file transfers for millions of users

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation Richard Bruton TD welcomed today’s announcement saying: “I am delighted to welcome Ipswitch Inc. to Galway. Their announcement that they are establishing an operations centre in Galway supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through IDA is great news for the region. This highlights once again the potential of different regional centres to attract companies based on that region’s talented local workforce and strong supportive environment for business. I wish Ipswitch Inc. and their workforce all the best for their future in Ireland.”

“We are very excited to take this next step in our company’s growth by creating a full-service Ipswitch office in Europe. From this headquarters and with all the crucial necessary functions including Sales, R&D and post-sales services, we will increase the competitive advantage for both our partners and Ipswitch, and most importantly we will develop a better understanding and higher degree of support for our most valuable asset: our customers.”, said Diane Albano, Ipswitch Chief Revenue Officer and Executive Vice President Worldwide Sales

Rich Welch, Ipswitch Executive Vice President Customer Satisfaction added: “As a technical support center of excellence providing radically improved post-sales support and staffed with highly skilled customer relationship managers, we will significantly improve our understanding of our customers, driving higher levels of satisfaction which will greatly expand the adoption of Ipswitch products through our strong partner network in EMEA.”

“Having a dedicated senior team in the heart of Europe will have a big impact on the level of support that we can offer our partner network and customers across the region therefore improving our service and support and ultimately driving growth.”, Rich concluded.

IDA CEO Martin Shanahan also welcomed the announcement saying Ipswitch’s decision to locate in Galway is excellent news for the city and the region. “Galway is developing as a major technology hub, particularly around internet and collaborative working technologies and Ipswitch’s arrival is further testament of that. The large talent pool available to companies the education and digital infrastructure, competitive and business-friendly environment and rich cultural heritage and amenity offering are proving a strong attractor for global companies such as Ipswitch. I wish them every success here.”

More information on the new roles can be obtained here:

About Ipswitch:
Ipswitch helps solve complex IT problems with simple solutions. The company’s software has been installed on more than 150,000 networks spanning 168 countries to monitor networks, applications and servers, and securely transfer files between systems, business partners and customers. Ipswitch was founded in 1991 and is based in Lexington, Massachusetts with offices throughout the U.S., Europe, Asia and Latin America. For more information, visit

omig awards

OMiG Digital Marketing Awards 2016 – Nominations Now Open

It’s Oscar season and the March 18th entry deadline for the annual OMiG digital marketing awards is quickly approaching.  The awards programme is now well established in its third year and honours the best and brightest in the field of digital marketing throughout Galway city and county.

The Online Marketing in Galway (OMiG) Digital Marketing Awards enables the vibrant Galway business community to celebrate the impressive work of their peers.  Past award recipients include An Pucan, Pat Divilly fitness, Kinlay House, The Dough Bros, My Kids Time and many more.

2016 has been a thrilling year to date for the team at OMiG.  Inspired by the successful Digital Summit in January with top national names speaking and 450 in attendance we look forward to the awards to let our local marketing stars shine.  The Awards will celebrate and reward the best digital talent in Galway with industry experts across Ireland judging the finalists.

The awards are held in partnership with Galway’s Local Enterprise Office and the Connacht Tribune Group and this year we are proud to haveIE Domain Registry as our main events sponsor.

The application process is short and simple.  Categories include Best Social Media Campaign, Best Website, Best Blog, Best Digital Start Up and the overall Online Marketing Leadership Award.  The Bonus category is the People’s Choice Award which will be voted by YOU the people of Galway.

A prize fund of over €15,000 is on offer in addition to providing invaluable exposure for your business.  Online badges will be given to all entries for display on their websites & social media.

The awards ceremony promises to be a memorable evening, where you can mingle with winners, finalists, as well as the OMiG team and judges.  It takes place at the Town Hall Theatre, Galway on Tuesday, 10th May.  This remarkable event will sell out quickly so advance booking of tickets is essential.

Early bird Tickets are priced at just €12.50 and there is a special 3 for 2 working out at €10 each, tickets will be on sale from this week on

Applications and nominations are now open for all categories and entries can be made through the OMiG website at Closing date is Friday, March 18th.  The full list of nominees will be published on March 21st.  For sponsorship opportunities please contact

A popular feature of last year’s awards will be retained which was a panel discussion on digital related topics. This year’s panel include names from the top digital marketing practitioners in Ireland, including Head of Innovation, David Tighe, Bank of Ireland. Anybody who is involved in digital marketing can attend so the evening so it’s not just for finalists.

The group OMiG headed by Maricka Burke-Keogh, behind the Awards are busy planning over the coming weeks so keep an eye on Galway Marketing website and social media for more news.

Make your nominations now before the closing date, March 18th 2016. Enter here.

Book you tickets via Eventbrite below or go direct to Eventbrite here.

Galway City

Galway ranked as Financial Times No 1 Micro European City of the Future for 2016

The Financial Times fDi’s European Cities and Regions of the Future 2016/17 ranking provides an invaluable benchmark for assessing the Europe’s investment landscape.

Galway is ranked as one of the winners of the fDi Magazine’s European Cities and Regions of the Future 2016/17 ranking.

This year Galway ranked as fDi’s number 1 Micro European Cities of the Future 2016/17 for Economic Potential and as fDi’s number 1 micro European Cities of the Future 2016/17 for Business Friendliness. This is a full category higher than our ranking in both areas in 2014.

We ranked second in the overall fDi’s Micro European Cities of the Future 2016/17 and fifth in terms of FDI Strategy

Speaking on the announcement of the awards President of Galway Chamber Frank Greene said: ‘We are delighted to be ranked the best small city in Europe for both Economic Potential and Business Friendliness in the rankings for 2016/2017. This is a great achievement and one of which Galway and Galway business should be very proud. I would like to commend Galway City Council on their initiative and their work in entering Galway for these rankings.

‘Added to our other designations and awards including the Unesco City of Film, the Purple Flag for our safe night time economy, and a resounding vote from readers of Travel & Leisure Magazine as the World’s Friendliest City and of course our upcoming submission to be the European Capital of Culture 2020, we have a city and region in which FDI would be proud to invest’, he said.

Mr. Greene continued: ‘While our fifth place ranking in terms of FDI strategy was disappointing, there is an enormous amount of work ongoing in this area and we expect that our ranking will significantly improve.

‘This ranking highlights the importance of forward planning. In this regard we encourage both the City and County Councils to jointly work with the Business/Economic Community to draft a 5yr Galway Economic & Spatial Plan that will seek to deliver Galway as a major economic force in the Irish and European context, a leading centre for commercial development investment, capitalising on the strength of its higher education institutions, the skills of its workforce, and its environmental, cultural and heritage attributes.

Mr. Greene concluded: ‘Successful implementation of this plan would be measured against the objective of achieving the No.1 ranking (Financial Times FDI Magazine) in FDI Strategy’.

Galway Coffee Trail was a Blast!


Galway’s first coffee trail proves a success, as it showcased the growing coffee culture in city through a blend of demos, presentations, tastings and talks. The brainchild of local photographer Julia Dunin took place over Saturday and Sunday in a range of local independent coffee venues.

Registration and ticket collection started in 56 Central on 9 am and, despite morning hours, over 80 people showed up.  As Galway Coffee Trail being self-guided tour, they were given a stamp card, map and schedule. Then they all made their way to selected venues, where demos and talks were taking place.

Gill Carroll’s dairy free coffee talk kicked off the weekend.  With almond, soya and coconut milk proving increasingly popular alternatives to regular milk, Gill explained health benefits and gave an edge to our cappuccinos, lattes and flat whites.

While it was raining on Saturday it was roasting in Mocha Beans as Italian expert Vincenzo Bellone shared his knowledge in a coffee roasting talk. Teasing the senses from the smooth texture, to the cracking sound, the colour morphing and finally the heavenly aroma spreaded all over the Latin Quarter. Meanwhile on Spanish Arch, Kitchen’s resident barista Tom Hayes, delivered a passionate presentation detailing the requirements for perfect espresso including type of coffee, equipment, optimum grind texture, strength of tamping and length of time, baristas of Galway consider yourselves warned, you are being timed!

A duo of brewing demos Syphon and Chemex were held in the arty surrounds of Coffeewerk + Press.  Displaying an almost scientific approach which gives the ability to control every variable in the brewing process and thus producing some of the most delectable coffee on the trail. It was fascinating to watch as Stephen and Jaesin, the master brewers, put their skills into action.

GCT attendees were welcomed to the Jungle Café with a quiz that separated the coffee amateurs from the coffee aficionados with a befitting prize up for grabs- pairs of tickets to attend the World Barista Championships in Dublin this June.

McCambridges hosted an event and testing in association with Ponaire.Company’s owner, Tommy Ryan was giving the insights into high-grade and fully traceable coffee they source in Sumatra. In 56 Central local artist, Saffron Lily showcased her talent producing unique paintings using coffee as her medium. Baking with coffee was the theme at Goya’s. Emer Murray explained how in Ireland while chocolate cake may be top tier of our treat choices, coffee cake is a humble treat that we associate with Mother’s home baking making it the more reliable less guilty midweek indulgence! Fresh samples were enjoyed after Emer detailed Goya’s method of creating the ultimate coffee cake.

When attendees made their way to West-end of the city, Monroes Tavern offered Irish coffee history, demo and tasting. The trailers were warmed up with choice of original, hazelnut or vanilla irish coffee. Further in the West-end, Urban Grind being a landmark on Galway’s coffee map offered a tasting of their fine espresso.

When participants made their way back to the Eyre Sq, Espresso Martinis were the order of the day in Hotel Meyrick’s Gaslight Bar & Brasserie. Accompanied by coffee cake, attendees learnt the history and process of making this elegant cocktail.

Day two saw the sun shine down on the trail. Having visited all ten venues attendee’s grins widened as they collected their goodie bags containing a generous selection of treats courtesy of the sponsors: Hazel Mountain Chocolates, Cava Bodega, Mocha Beans, The Kitchen and many vouchers and discounts from participating venues.

Having sold out with an attendance of almost 100 people and receiving glowing reviews “The best Valentine’s weekend event we ever attended”, “ Fab time @ the Galway Coffee Trail, and the excellent goodie bags, thank u & looking 4ward 2 next one “with a twist” , “Excellent event for people who don’t drink alcohol”  we hope to see a return of the trail.

Gill_Carroll_at_56_Central_demo_for_Galway_Coffee_Trail-Photo_Julia_Dunin Hazel_Mountain_Chocolates_sponsoring_goodie_bags_for_Galway_Coffee_Trail-Photo_Julia_Dunin Italian_coffee_roaster_Vincenzo_Bellone_for_Galway_Coffee_Trail-Photo_Julia_Dunin