Irish Women Entrepreneur’s Self Belief Continues to Grow Following Kildare and Wicklow National Women’s Enterprise Day Event
Nina Carberry, Tara Lane & Kate Dempsey among some of the guests who captured the attention of the audience at this year’s event in Keadeen Hotel, Newbridge, Co. Kildare
Research has shown that Irish women’s belief in their ability to run a successful business is continuing to grow as this year’s National Women’s Enterprise Day (NWED) was launched in Kildare and Wicklow recently. The initiative of the Local Enterprise Offices, now in its 16th year, took place on the 13th October encouraging female entrepreneurship and supporting women in business across the country.
The research, part of the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) for 2021, showed that 49% of women surveyed believed they had the necessary skills and knowledge to start a business. This was up from 39% in 2018. The report also highlighted that Ireland has the third highest rate for early-stage women entrepreneurs across European countries, with over 1,400 women starting a new business in Ireland every month.
Early-stage women entrepreneurs in Ireland are mainly focused on the customer services sector with 64% of those surveyed working in that area. The report showed a significant growth in export customers for these businesses, with 26% of customers of these early-stage startups based abroad, up from 15% in 2019 highlighting how they have diversified their markets during Covid.
The theme of this year’s National Women’s Enterprise Day was “Our Future, Our Way” A joint event run by Local Enterprise Offices Kildare and Wicklow, Keadeen Hotel, Newbridge, supported by Enterprise Ireland and the Local Authorities. Panel discussion was hosted by MC Susan Keogh with Leading Lights from Kildare and Wicklow, Tara Lane (Centrepiece Rosettes) and Kate Dempsey (Aqualicense Ltd. - recent overall winner of the LEO National Enterprise Awards 2022), along with Guest Speaker Nina Carberry, Entrepreneur, retired Irish female National Hunt jockey and TV personality and was followed by an exhibition area showcasing several female- led local businesses, music and networking.
In her address to the Audience Jacqui McNabb Head of Enterprise Kildare, said; “National Women’s Enterprise Day has become a flagship event for women entrepreneurs and businesswomen every year. While the past two years saw successful online celebrations, it really is special to be back with sixteen in person events across the country, and some amazing speakers and inspirational businesswomen. If you have that itch to start a business, or maybe you are already running a business, reach out to your local Enterprise office It can help you grow your network, find out what supports are available and learn from those who have gone before.
Carol Gibbons, Divisional Manager, Regions and Local Enterprise with Enterprise Ireland said; “Enterprise Ireland is delighted to support National Women’s Enterprise Day, particularly as we are seeing in person events return this year. As evidence by the recent GEM report confidence about entrepreneurship among women is growing with nearly half of all women surveyed saying they had the skills and knowledge to start a business. Events like National Women’s Enterprise Day are important in supporting this positive improvement, providing women entrepreneurs and those considering starting a business with insights from leading business women and introducing them to a network of entrepreneurs who are blazing a trail in the Irish market and overseas.”
Back Row – Jill Lush (Wicklow WIB Co-ordinator), Doreen Heavey (LEO Kildare), Tara Lane, Nina Carberry, Kate Dempsey (Guest Speakers) and Louise Fleming (Wicklow LEO)
Front Row – Jacqui McNabb (Head of Enterprise, Kildare), Susan Keogh (MC) and Vibeke Delahunt (Head of Enterprise, Wicklow)