On March 13th, participants of the second “Illuminate” Female Entrepreneurship Programme run by The Mill Enterprise Hub and DCU Ryan Academy, pitched their businesses to a panel of judges from Enterprise Ireland, Meath LEO, and AIB. The Illuminate programme was created by The Mill Enterprise Hub, with assistance from DKIT and DCU, to empower early stage female entrepreneurs to develop and expand their business. The programme is supported by Coca-Cola International Services, AIB, and the Louth & Meath Local Enterprise Offices.

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The judges commended the high quality of pitches, and according to Christine Meade “the ambition, and ability of the entrepreneurs is truly remarkable. It’s critical that female entrepreneurs are supported in taking the often difficult steps in growing a business. We’re delighted to have supported this initiative, and look forward to hearing of the futures success stories of the graduates”.

The Illuminate Programme commenced in January 2017, with thirteen participants. It is the second Illuminate programme to be delivered at The Mill, which has identified Female Entrepreneurship has one of its priority sectors. It delivers to early-stage female entrepreneurs from Louth and Meath, an opportunity to participate in the specially created Illuminate course, which is accredited by QQI (Quality & Qualifications Ireland) at Level 6, Minor Award. Participants are given the knowledge, skills and understanding to commercialise sustainable and profitable products by completing 12 study modules including Sales Strategy, Project Management, Business Risk Management, Sustaining & Growing Your Business, Marketing, and Leadership.  Two graduates from the first programme continued to work with DCU Ryan Academy via the Enterprise Ireland supported programme, High Fliers.

 

The judging panel included Caroline Lynch from Meath LEO, Susan Cahill of Enterprise Ireland, Christine Meade from AIB, and Breanndán Casey of The Mill. The judges heard entrepreneurs from myriad sectors including business services, training, and technology firms. The motive behind the ‘fake’ €100,000 pitch is to encourage female entrepreneurs to focus on scaling their business, either with financial or mentoring support.

 

Breanndán Casey, Business Development Manager at The Mill Enterprise Hub, stated that “The feedback from participants has been exceptionally positive, and I’ve seen a huge transformation amongst the trainees over the past eight weeks.  DCU Ryan Academy are the acknowledged experts in supporting female entrepreneurs, and it’s fantastic that local entrepreneurs can avail of the programme which is generously supported by local firms. I can see that their confidence levels, and focus, has increased sharply, with a number of entrepreneurs telling me that the course gave them an opportunity to step back from their day-to-day activities, and to carefully consider the long-term strategy and goals of their business, as part of the Business Model Canvas exercise”

Certificates of completion were presented to each participant at the Award Ceremony, and all trainees will attain full accreditation in the coming weeks when their Business Model Canvas is assessed.

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illuminate-logo-yellowOn Thursday, 17th November, Alison Cowzer of East Coast Bakehouse and Dragon’s Den, launched the Boyne Valley / M1 ‘Illuminate’ Female Entrepreneurship Programme at The Mill Enterprise Hub in Drogheda. The programme is delivered by the DCU Ryan Academy and is a Fetac-accredited course aimed at entrepreneurs seeking to develop their business. Guest speakers on the day also included Bronagh Conlon of Network Louth, and Jill Stout of CooKit Kids who participated in the first Illuminate programme.

Application Form (click on the Word Doc icon): Image result for word doc

Applications accepted until 16th December 2016

Place confirmation: 13th January 2017

Course start date: 30th January 2017

Send your application to Anna: admin@themilldrogheda.ie

Orla Thornton, AIB, Breanndáin Casey, The Mill, Alison Cowzer, East Coast Bakehouse, Christine Meade, AIB, Bronagh Conlon, Listoke Distillery and Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill's kItchen Cookery school at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Orla Thornton, AIB, Breanndáin Casey, The Mill, Alison Cowzer, East Coast Bakehouse, Christine Meade, AIB, Bronagh Conlon, Listoke Distillery and Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill’s kItchen Cookery school at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews

Alison Cowzer is a Co-founder of East Coast Bakehouse, the new large scale food manufacturing business based in Drogheda who are producing a range of cookies and biscuits for the Irish, UK and European markets. Alison outlined the high points of listening to 53 pitches on Dragon’s Den “the most successful companies have to be adaptable and continually listen to their customers. It’s critical that you also know all the relevant financial figures. A common issue for females is that they don’t ask for the correct amount of money that is needed to deliver their vision. You need to be confident that you can deliver on your promises, and having the right resources is integral to that challenge”.

Alison Cowzer, East Coast Bakehouse at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Alison Cowzer, East Coast Bakehouse at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews

The Illuminate programme was created by The Mill Enterprise Hub, with assistance from DKIT and DCU Ryan Academy, to empower early stage female entrepreneurs to develop and expand their business. The programme is supported by Coca-Cola International Services, AIB, and the Louth & Meath Local Enterprise Offices. Applications are now open, with the closing date of 16th December.

Bronagh Conlon, Listoke Distillery at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Bronagh Conlon, Listoke Distillery at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews

“I found the Illuminate course to be of tremendous value to me as a businesswoman”, said Jill of Cookit Kids, “I was able to spend valuable time working on my business in terms of developing the model and to truthfully analyse it, with the guidance and help of some amazing professionals”.

Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill's KItchen Cookery School at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill’s KItchen Cookery School at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews

The first Illuminate course, commenced in October 2015 and enabled early-stage female entrepreneurs from Louth and Meath an opportunity to participate in the specially created course, which is accredited by QQI (Quality & Qualifications Ireland) at Level 6, Minor Award. The programme fast-tracked entrepreneurs businesses to develop their business and leadership skills, achieve scale, and create employment. Participants were given the knowledge, skills and understanding to commercialise sustainable and profitable products by completing 12 study modules including Sales Strategy, Project Management, Business Risk Management, Sustaining & Growing Your Business, Marketing, and Leadership.

Breanndáin Casey, The Mill at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Breanndáin Casey, The Mill at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews

Breanndán Casey, Business Development Manager at The Mill Enterprise Hub, stated that “it’s great to see Coca-Cola International Services and AIB come on board again to support local business. This keeps the price extremely competitive, and the course is an opportunity to step back from day-to-day activities, and to carefully consider the long-term strategy and goals of their business, as part of the Business Model Canvas exercise”.

Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill's KItchen Cookery School at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill’s KItchen Cookery School at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews
Alison Cowzer, East Coast Bakehouse, Christine Meade, AIB, Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill's KItchen Cookery School, Caroline Lynch, Local Enterprise Office Louth, Orla Thornton, AIB and Breanndáin Casey, The Mill at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Alison Cowzer, East Coast Bakehouse, Christine Meade, AIB, Jillian Stout, Cookit Kids and Jill’s KItchen Cookery School, Caroline Lynch, Local Enterprise Office Louth, Orla Thornton, AIB and Breanndáin Casey, The Mill at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews
Diane McGovern, Jean Moore, Shiny SparklyU and Helen McEntee, Kumon and DS Delta at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Diane McGovern, Jean Moore, Shiny SparklyU and Helen McEntee, Kumon and DS Delta at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews
Orla Thornton, AIB, Maria Forde Dunne, Bridget Kerrigan, Bammedia and Lisa Heeney, Aromabump at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda. Photo - Jenny Matthews
Orla Thornton, AIB, Maria Forde Dunne, Bridget Kerrigan, Bammedia and Lisa Heeney, Aromabump at the ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme event at The Mill Enterprise Hub, Drogheda.
Photo – Jenny Matthews

Illuminate Brochure:

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illuminate-logo-yellowThis year’s Illuminate QQI (Quality & Qualifications Ireland) accredited Level 6 programme will be officially launched on Thursday, 17th November.mew2016-logo-small

The launch will be run as part of the Meath Enterprise Week 2016 and will take place in The Mill from 12:30pm to 14:00.

 

All female entrepreneurs welcome to attend, graduates of the first Illuminate course will be talking about the benefits of our programme and will hopefully get you interested in participating.

Our main speaker, Alison Cowzer, Co-founder and Marketing/ Innovation Director of East Coast Bakehouse, and our guest speaker, Jillian Stout, founder of Jill’s Kitchen and a graduate of the first Illuminate Programme will be launching Illuminate 2.

Alison Cowzer Image result for eastcoast bakehouse

Alison Cowzer is a Co-founder of East Coast Bakehouse – a new large scale food manufacturing business based in Drogheda Co Louth. They’re gearing up to produce a range of cookies and biscuits for the Irish, UK and European markets.
As a new Dragon investor in the 2016 series of RTE ‘s Dragons’ Den, Alison has invested in a number of new Irish businesses,  and is working closely with these entrepreneures to drive growth in their new enterprises.

Jillian Stout is the founder of Jill’s Kitchen and one of the graduates of our first Illuminate programme. She set up a cookery school in the welcome surrounds of her home and set about teaching lots of enthusiastic kids everything from pasta & pizza making to cupcakes, bread-rolls & tarts.

http://www.jillskitchen.ie/

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At the end of the event representatives from Network Louth will hold a 10 min discussion on networking for females.

Places are limited, so please book your free ticket here:

Sponsored by:

_djj6w63coca-cola-international-services-7489 leo-louthmeath-leo

 

 

 

 

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On 7th December, participants of the first “Illuminate” Female Entrepreneurship Programme run by The Mill Enterprise Hub and DCU Ryan Academy, pitched their businesses to a panel of judges at Coca-Cola International Services Headquarters in Drogheda.

coke illuminate programme 10

The Illuminate programme was created by The Mill Enterprise Hub, with assistance from DKIT and DCU, to empower early stage female entrepreneurs to develop and expand their business. The programme was supported by Coca-Cola International Services, AIB, and the Louth & Meath Local Enterprise Offices.

The judges commended the high quality of pitches, and according to Jennifer McEvoy Brennan, Supply Management Director at The Coca-Cola Company’s Europe, Africa and Asia Hub,   “the ambition, and ability of the entrepreneurs is truly remarkable. It’s critical that female entrepreneurs are supported in taking the often difficult steps in growing a business. We’re delighted to have supported this initiative, and look forward to hearing of the futures success stories of the graduates”

The judging panel included Jennifer Brennan of Coca-Cola International Services, Sarita Johnston of Enterprise Ireland, Amanda Murphy from AIB, and Eoghan Stack of DCU Ryan Academy. The judges heard from entrepreneurs from myriad sectors including internet marketing, hand-crafted aromatherapy products, childrens’ cooking kits, and energy-saving services. The motive behind the ‘fake’ €50,000 pitch is to encourage the female entrepreneurs to focus on scaling their business, either with financial or mentoring support of €50,000.

coke illuminate programme 11

The Illuminate Programme commenced in October 2015, with sixteen participants attending the first day of the course. It delivers to early-stage female entrepreneurs from Louth and Meath, an opportunity to participate in the specially created Illuminate course, which is accredited by QQI (Quality & Qualifications Ireland) at Level 6, Minor Award. The programme fast-tracks female led businesses to develop their business and leadership skills, achieve scale, and create employment. Participants are given the knowledge, skills and understanding to commercialise sustainable and profitable products by completing 12 study modules including Sales Strategy, Project Management, Business Risk Management, Sustaining & Growing Your Business, Marketing, and Leadership.

Illuminate Judges & Participants, Dec' 7th Pitch

Participants, Judges and Sponsors of the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme pictured at their conference in Coca-Cola's Southgate offices last week.
Participants, Judges and Sponsors of the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme pictured at their conference in Coca-Cola’s Southgate offices last week.

Breanndán Casey, Business Development Manager at The Mill Enterprise Hub, stated that “The feedback from participants has been exceptionally positive, and I’ve seen a huge transformation amongst the trainees over the past eight weeks. I can see that their confidence levels, and focus, has increased sharply, with a number of entrepreneurs telling me that the course gave them an opportunity to step back from their day-to-day activities, and to carefully consider the long-term strategy and goals of their business, as part of the Business Model Canvas exercise”

Certificates of completion were presented to each participant at the Award Ceremony, and all trainees will attain full accreditation in the coming weeks when their Business Model Canvas is assessed.

coke illuminate programme 18

 

Mandy Murphy of AIB presents Karen Fleming with her certificate of participation in the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme.
Mandy Murphy of AIB presents Karen Fleming with her certificate of participation in the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme.

 

Siobhan Woods of sponsors Coca-Cola International Services presents Lisa Heeney with her certificate for participation in the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme.
Siobhan Woods of sponsors Coca-Cola International Services presents Lisa Heeney with her certificate for participation in the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme.
Siobhan Woods of sponsors Coca-Cola International Services presents Rowena Arkesteijn with her certificate for participation in the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme.
Siobhan Woods of sponsors Coca-Cola International Services presents Rowena Arkesteijn with her certificate for participation in the Illuminate Female Entrepreneurship Programme.
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On Monday, 23rd November, Anna Keller from Coca-Cola International Services and Anne Marie Scott from DCU Ryan Academy paid a visit to The Mill and met with participants of the ‘Illuminate’ Programme.

grad

The “Illuminate” programme, created by The Mill and delivered by DCU Ryan Academy, is going strong and feedback from participants has been very positive. We’re now half-way there and participants are developing their Business Model Canvas, as part of the Level 6 accreditation.

On 7th December participants will be giving their pitch presentation to local investors in the Coca-Cola International Services Headquarters based in Southgate Shopping Centre.

Illuminate Programme commenced on 19th October 2015, with 16 participants attending the first day of the course. This programme, funded by AIB, Coca-Cola International Services, and the Meath and Louth LEOs gives early-stage female entrepreneurs from Louth and Meath an opportunity to participate in the specially created Illuminate course, which is accredited by QQI (Quality & Qualifications Ireland) at Level 6, Minor Award. The programme will fast track female led businesses to develop their business and leadership skills, achieve scale, and create employment. Participants are given the knowledge, skills and understanding to commercialise sustainable and profitable products and services that customers need and want.

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colman-farrell
Colman Farrell, lecturer from The Innovation Academy

On 19th October 2015, sixteen ladies turned up for the first day of the ‘Illuminate’ course with DCU Ryan Academy.

 

Colman Farrell, a lecturer from The Innovation Academy, got the girls to practice their elevator pitches in front of the group and with each other, and gave some advice on public speaking – “Fake it till you make it!”.

Illuminate

Illuminate

Great to see full attendance on the first day, keep up the spirit, girls!

The CEO of the DCU Ryan Academy, Eoghan Stack, has also paid a visit to The Mill on the day, great encouragement for the ladies!

Eoghan Stack

The new ‘Illuminate’ Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme, delivered by the DCU Ryan Academy, was launched at The Mill Enterprise Hub on Wednesday October 23rd.

Illuminate DCU Ryan Academy

This programme, funded by AIB, Coca-Cola International Services, and the Meath and Louth LEOs gives early-stage female entrepreneurs from Louth and Meath an opportunity to participate in the specially created Illuminate course, which is accredited by QQI (Quality & Qualifications Ireland) at Level 6, Minor Award. A total of 16 participants will be selected for this programme which will fast track female led businesses to develop their business and leadership skills, achieve scale, and create employment. Participants will be given the knowledge, skills and understanding to commercialise sustainable and profitable products and services that customers need and want.

According to Mandy Murphy, Regional Business Banking Manager, “AIB are delighted to support this initiative. We have a strong tradition of supporting female entrepreneurs via the Network Louth/Meath group, and this training course will give participants the chance to avail of the highest training standards in the country”

Illuminate DCU Ryan Academy

Illuminate DCU Ryan Academy

The finale of the course will take place at Coca-Cola International Services’ office on December 7th where trainees will pitch to a specially-selected panel. Siobhan Woods commented “Coca-Cola’s International 5×20 programme is a global commitment to enable the economic empowerment of 5 million women entrepreneurs. Locally, the Illuminate programme will be a fantastic opportunity to tap into the expertise of DCU Ryan Academy and The Mill Enterprise Hub. We particularly liked the fact that trainees will complete a Business Model Canvas based on the specific needs of their company. This will be a practical, interactive, and highly relevant course”

View the Illuminate Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme brochure here.

Please phone 041-9802444 or email admin@themilldrogheda.ie to obtain an application form.

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Illuminate logo

Female Entrepreneurship Programme

What is it?

AIB, Coca-Cola & Louth LEO logoSponsored by AIB, The Coca-Cola International Services, Louth & Meath LEO, the FETAC Boyne Valley Female Entrepreneurship Programme aims to select up to 16 start-ups and help them fast-track their businesses, develop leadership skills, achieve scale and create employment. Participants will be given the knowledge, skills and understanding to commercialise sustainable and profitable products and services, that customers need and want.

 

Six trainers will be delivering 12 modules. At the end of the course participants will be required to complete a mandatory assignment, which is to be submitted on Friday, December 18th 2015. For the assignment, participants will be asked to submit a completed Business Model Canvas (the criteria for scoring will advised on Day 1 of the programme) and on Day 7 each participant will be presenting an Investor Pitch to Assessors (scoring will be advised).

 

Certificates of completion will be presented on Day 7, and all participants will automatically become part of the Ryan Academy Female Entrepreneurship network which will enable them to attend all networking events organized by the Ryan Academy.

Who is it for?

We are looking for female participants who are currently considering setting up a business, or who have been in business for the past 2 years.

When is it?

The Programme will take place one full day per week over a 7 week period in The Mill Enterprise Hub in Drogheda. Time: 9.00 am – 5.30 pm.

What topics will be covered?

Day 1: 19th October

Introduction to Entrepreneurship & Business Management
• Tradesperson or Business Owner?
• Challenges in managing & growing a small business
• Growth & diversification
• Thinking like an entrepreneur

Day 2: 2nd November

(i) Business Planning for your Business Environment
• Challenge of a changing business environment
• What is strategy?
• Why write a business plan?
• Business environment analysis tools – what they are and how to use them
• Identifying and implementing a sustainable business model
(ii) Marketing Management & Branding
• What is marketing?
• Identifying your market and your customer
• Market segmentation
• The marketing mix
• Social Media
• Digital Marketing

Day 3: 9th November

(i) Project Management
(ii) Business Risk Management

Day 4: 16th November

(i) Sales Strategy & Process
• Sales strategy
• Design & implementation of sales processes
• How & what we do in sales for the organisation
• Creating the sales pipeline
• Goals, measures and accountability
(ii) Financial Management, Funding Models & Revenue
• Accounts for business
• Overview of Revenue requirements
• Cash flow
• Benchmarking & valuing business performance
• Sources of funding

Day 5: 23rd November

(i) Leadership Styles: Building your Team
• Identifying and allocating key roles in your team
• Founders, employees, mission, intent, values. Managing a growing business.
• Why is EQ essential in team building & leadership
• Why is emotional capital so powerful in building your team and sustaining successful businesses
(ii) Legals for Start-ups

Day 6: 30th November

(i) Sustaining & Growing your Business
• Managing the now and planning for the future
• Sources of funding
• Prospects and opportunities for the construction sector
• The innovation process described
• Sustaining for growth
(ii) Pitch Preparation for Skills Demonstration
• The problem you Solve
• Who you are?
• What you do?
• Practice your business plan pitch

Day 7: 7th December ‘Finale’

Skills Demonstration – ‘Investor Pitch’ to Panel, Certificate Ceremony & Final Wrap Up

Who is delivering the programme?

DCU Ryan Academy logoDCU Ryan Academy is a non-profit, joint venture between Dublin City University and the Ryan Family (Ryanair) that aims to be the leading supporter of entrepreneurs and innovation in Ireland. Their mission is to promote an entrepreneurial mindset and real innovation focus among Irish SMEs, corporates, start-ups and researchers through a range of training, leadership and funding initiatives. They currently deliver the Female High Fliers Programme which is an accelerator programme for female led start-ups which specifically addresses the challenges facing female entrepreneurs, supported by Enterprise Ireland. This programme fast tracks female entrepreneurs, their leadership skills and their businesses. It includes a comprehensive programme of workshops, bespoke mentoring and excellent networking opportunities.

How can I find out more?

View the Illuminate Boyne Valley/M1 Female Entrepreneurship Programme brochure here.

For further information, please contact admin@themilldrogheda.ie

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