Kildare Businesses Meet Thousands of Buyers at Local Enterprise Showcase 2023
Businesses from Co. Kildare had the opportunity to meet buyers from all over the world last week as part of the Local Enterprise Showcase at Showcase 2023 in the RDS, Dublin. There were over 100 Local Enterprise Office supported businesses from across the country at the event, with four in attendance from Co. Kildare.
The Kildare companies were selected by Local Enterprise Office Kildare to take part in this year’s Local Enterprise Showcase and have been working closely in recent months to ensure they are in the best possible position to maximise their appearance at the event including sales technique, marketing materials and stand production.
Jackie Sweeney of Kildare Candle Barn, Designer Roisín Linnane, Laura Dempsey of PickledPomPom and Claire Malone of Imprints & Ink were all exhibiting at the Local Enterprise Showcase, which saw over 4,000 buyers from retailers across the globe attend the three-day event in Dublin, looking to secure new sales and partners for the year ahead. Upwards of €20 million in business was expected to have been transacted across the three-day event.
Kildare Candle Barn (https://www.kildarecandlebarn.com/) produce a range of high-quality luxury candles all hand poured at a studio just outside Kildare town. They have a range of unique fragrances to suit all preferences and their distinctive rose gold tins are fully recyclable!
Roisín Linnane (www.roisinlinnane.com) is a luxury womenswear brand, selling to department stores, high-end independent boutiques and direct to customer online, both domestic and international, currently wholesale export to UK, Australia, and Asia.
Pickled PomPom (https://pickledpompom.com/ ) create products to celebrate life's many milestones, the core of the business are their keepsake cards and prints but they have also expanded into party ware and decorative goods.
Imprints & Ink (www.imprintsandink.com ) is an Irish fashion and illustration brand which creates luxury scarves and fine art prints. Drawing inspiration from Ireland’s beautiful native plant species, Claire’s designs are created from her home studio in Kildare. Each scarf captures a different threatened Irish plant and highlights the importance of its conservation.
For research purposes, LEO Kildare had in attendance 11 early-stage designer-makers. These clients are part of LEO Kildare’s Craft and Creative Cluster, all aspiring to exhibit at Showcase 2024. This cluster of creative designer makers is led by LEO Kildare. All creative entrepreneurs, at various stages in business are encouraged to contact our LEO office. For more information visit https://submit.link/r9
Dara Calleary, T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment officially opened Showcase 2023 at the RDS, Dublin. The show, which marked its 47th edition this year is one of Ireland’s largest and most important international trade fairs. Showcase is presented on behalf of Design & Crafts Council Ireland, with support from Enterprise Ireland in promoting the trade show internationally, and the Local Enterprise Offices nationwide.
Minister Calleary said: “It’s great to be here and see some of the incredible products on display. Ireland is globally renowned for its craft and design, and Showcase is the international launchpad for so many Irish makers to achieve this recognition. Craft plays an integral part in Ireland’s economy, and I wish each maker the best of luck during Showcase.”
Jacqui McNabb, Head of Enterprise Kildare said “Local Enterprise Showcase is one of the industry’s largest international trade fairs where designers and craft makers provide a choice of contemporary and heritage collections, offering innovation, quality, sustainability and a distinctive point of difference to retail buyers from across the globe. Kildare Local Enterprise Office were delighted to be represented this year again by members of our Crafts & Creative cluster, the selection process was difficult as Kildare has many quality craft & creative businesses that would be well placed at Showcase.”
Rosemary Steen, CEO of Design and Crafts Council Ireland said “Showcase is now in its 48th year and we were delighted to welcome buyers from Ireland and all over the world who play a vital role in creating a stage for Irish craft and design. This year 380+ exhibitors joined us to highlight and grow their businesses. I want to thank the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Enterprise Ireland, Local Enterprise Office, and of course the RDS for supporting such an important event in the Irish Design and Craft calendar.”
It was another strong year for Local Enterprise Showcase exhibitors as part of the Showcase Awards with several Local Enterprise Office client companies securing awards and recognition through the Showcase awards programme including the top award for 2023 for Tom King of An Gobha, supported by Local Enterprise Office Meath.
Winner of Overall Best Product was awarded to ‘Iron St. Brigid’s Cross’ by Tom King of An Gobha Iron Works and Experience. An Gobha offers immersive and interactive experiences of traditional iron age metal forging delivered with theatre, stories, myths, and legends in Bohermeen, Co Meath. An Gobha also manufactures and sells handcrafted metal decorative objects based on ancient Celtic symbols and artefacts of the Boyne Valley, Ancient East. Tom has created the St. Brigid’s Cross as a work of art based around the traditional cross, with depth and with colour, to mark the new national holiday celebrating our female Patron Saint, St. Brigid.
Best Product Category Winners:
- Showcase Best Product – FASHION: Linda Wilson, Linda Wilson Knitwear
- Showcase Best Product – HOME: Kathleen Leadbetter, Jerpoint Glass Studio
- Showcase Best Product – GIFT: Serena Grimes, Snugí Babóg Knitwear
- Showcase Best Product – JEWELLERY: Garrett Mallon, Garrett Mallon Jewellery
- Showcase Best Product – WELLNESS: Annarita Monaldi, Craft Around the Clock
Other Showcase Award Winners:
- The Design & Crafts Council of Ireland Design Ireland Award – Linda Wilson, Linda Wilson Knitwear
- Local Enterprise Showcase Award – Síne Dunne, Siest Sleep
- Sustainability Award - Eoin Shanley, Copperfish Lighting Company