Laois company, Machado Men’s Grooming from Local Enterprise Office Laois, was one of over 30 Local Enterprise Office clients from across the country who exhibited in the Local Enterprise Village at this year’s National Ploughing Championships in Carlow.
A record attendance at this year’s National Ploughing Championships will have a positive knock on impact for all the small businesses who were attending at the Local Enterprise Village in the event this week according to Minister Heather Humphreys.
The Local Enterprise Village, an initiative of the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) in local authorities across the country, saw over 30 small businesses from LEOs given the opportunity to exhibit at Europe’s largest outdoor event and showcase their products and services to just under 300,000 attendees.
A host of well-known faces dropped into the Local Enterprise Village across the three days including Minister Heather Humphreys, T.D., Minister Pat Breen T.D., the Queen of the Ploughing, Anna May McHugh, former Rose of Tralee Maria Walsh and TV personalities Kathryn Thomas and Mary Kennedy.
They all had the chance to meet with some of Ireland’s best up-and-coming small businesses including Machado Men’s Grooming from Laois.
Machado Men’s Grooming produce high quality natural men’s grooming products including beard oil, beard balm and shaving soap.
The products are handmade in Portlaoise using Natural Ingredients for retail and online markets.
Machado Men’s Grooming currently supplies shops in Laois, Kilkenny, Monaghan, Belfast and Galway and has begun exporting to Spain and Portugal.
Síle Headen from Machado Men’s Grooming said, “The ploughing was a really good experience for Machado Men's Grooming.
“We are happy with the feedback and the overall reaction to the products.
“The Local Enterprise Village is a great initiative for getting new businesses out there and a great chance to research and get consumer feedback.”
MinIster for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys said, “It was fantastic to spend time with these small businesses from across the country.
“ The Local Enterprise Village is the only place at the Ploughing you will find a mix of Ireland’s best entrepreneurs and small businesses across a variety of sectors.
“These small businesses are helping to boost their local economies and are employing staff in towns and villages across the country so we will continue to support them through initiatives like this and the range of Local Enterprise Office programmes.
“Our small businesses of today are our international companies of tomorrow and it was great to see the support of so many of the Ploughing attendees for the Local Enterprise Village.”
Minister for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen said, “The Local Enterprise Village is a unique initiative by the Local Enterprise Offices and this year it has excelled with the crowds at the Ploughing Championships.
“To see the crowds flowing into the tent was a huge endorsement for these businesses and for the work of the Local Enterprise Offices in supporting and fostering such a wide range of excellent companies from across the country.
“ Each business was making the most of their chance to make a name for themselves and take advantage of the huge footfall this year and it was great to see the spirit of entrepreneurship alive and well in the Local Enterprise Village.”
Kieran Comerford, Chair of the Local Enterprise Exhibitions Committee said, “The footfall in the Local Enterprise Village this year was incredibly high. From the moment the gates opened on Tuesday morning right through to Thursday evening the marquee was packed with visitors enjoying the wide range of businesses and products on offer.
“There really was something for everyone and that was reflected in the popularity this year.
“We work with these businesses from early in the year on selling, marketing, stand design and presentation to ensure that when those gates open on the first day they are best placed to make the most of this opportunity for their business.
“Many of these small businesses would not be in a position to exhibit at the Ploughing on their own so the Local Enterprise Village gives them that chance to give their businesses a huge boost!”
The Local Enterprise Village is just one of the Local Enterprise Offices initiatives that aim to support and promote small businesses across the country.
There are 31 Local Enterprise Offices located in local authorities nationwide funded by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation through Enterprise Ireland.
Other initiatives include Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE), National Women’s Enterprise Day, the Local Enterprise Showcase, the Student Enterprise Programme and the National Enterprise Awards.
For more information on the Local Enterprise Offices and their range of supports and programmes, go to www.LocalEnterprise.ie.