As every employer knows, your staff are your most valuable asset, so they need protecting – but so does your business, so how do you ensure you’ve got everything covered?
Peninsula, a member of Waterford Chamber, has arranged a free of charge seminar for yourself and a selection of other like-minded, local business owners. Delivered by a highly experienced employment law expert, Peninsula will provide you with key information to safeguard your business.
This free event will arm you with information on:
How to manage staff issues quickly and effectively
How to deal with short and long term absenteeism
Employee stress, the risks for you, your business and your employees
How to ensure Health & Safety compliance
This small investment of your time could represent tangible value to your business, leaving you more time to focus on other essential activities.
Burgers, beer and cocktails provided the perfect recipe for the Midsummer Mixer, hosted by Waterford Chamber, Waterford Chamber Skillnet and Waterford Micro Business Network at the Athenaeum House Hotel on Thursday night last (June 23rd).
Designed to appeal to start-up and micro businesses and sponsored by Bank of Ireland, close on 100 business people arrived in glorious sunshine to mix, mingle and take part in some fun speed networking.
Hawk-Eye Falconry provided a spectacular opening to the event as their Harris Hawk did a fly over while guests sipped on Thin Gin and Claire’s Cordial Cocktails created by the talented team at The Reg or Metalman beer and enjoyed a delicious BBQ.
Getting proceedings under way, Waterford Chamber President Laurent Borla said that while multinationals are our front window, 99% of businesses are SMEs.
“We want to support start-ups. We NEED to support start-ups. And that’s why Waterford Chamber this year created a start-up/micro category, because networking is key to your success. You will not do it on your own. You need to share, to learn from others and to be exposed to business opportunities. SMEs and start-ups are passionate and love talking about their business so don’t be shy and avail of it. There is a strong and growing ecosystem in Waterford: the LEO, New Frontiers, SEBIC, Arclabs, New Frontiers, Fumbally Exchange, Waterford Micro Business Network, Waterford Chamber Skillnet, and loads of small initiatives like tonight. Get to know them, participate, give and I promise you will receive.”
Sponsors Bank of Ireland then led a ‘fire-side chat’ discussion, facilitated by Start-up Community Manager Ita O’Sullivan and featuring Sandra Whelan from Immersive VR Education; Barrie Rogers, Chia Bia and James O’Sullivan, FlavourHaus, who all spoke about the highs and lows of starting a business, the challenges they faced and the support they received.
Next up was keynote speaker Robbie Skuse, owner of Kollect.ie and founder of Digest Waterford, a community designed to connect start-ups. Having worked on start-up networking groups in other cities, Robbie said it is essential Waterford replicates what they are doing and that the potential here for new businesses is second to none.
"I'm challenging you as an individual, not as an organisation to take action; to engage and to help create a better eco-system for Start-ups here in Waterford”, he said.
"Waterford is a very loyal city which makes it a great place to start a business but we need more synergies between the small companies starting out, and the businesses who have already established themselves here."
With that message in mind, guests joined Seamus Hayes of Fitzwilliam Training Consultants for a speed networking session and the event was brought to a close by Ronan Cleary, Chairperson of the Waterford Micro Business Network, who thanked sponsors Bank of Ireland for their support and also those who contributed to making the event such a success.
Waterford Chamber hosted Sunday Business Post Editor Ian Kehoe as the guest speaker at the annual President's Lunch at Waterford Castle.
The high-profile lunch was the first on the calendar for the new Waterford Chamber President Laurent Borla and Ian Kehoe Editor of the Sunday Business Post and award-winning journalist, author and broadcaster spoke about business in the region from a media perspective.
Speaking on national policy and business in the region, Ian said, “This government, like the one before it, talks constantly about business and business needs. It has become something of a mantra: “the best small country in the world in which to do business”. Yet the community is not feeling the love. SMEs feel a disconnect between themselves and government. Rightly or wrongly, many business owners feel they are subsidising government support for others. Indeed, new research shows that a third of SMEs don’t know who their public representatives are. This is something the government must address.”
Commenting at the event President of Waterford Chamber Laurent welcomed guest speaker Ian Kehoe and said, “When asked to come up with a theme for my year as President, I wanted it to reflect my own background as an engineer but also my vision for Waterford. Technology and innovation are to the core of who I am and it’s exciting to see Waterford developing as a highly respected innovative technologically advanced city and county. The emergence of new businesses is fundamental to job creation and economic development in Waterford. We want jobs, we want funding for education, we want skills and training and we as a Chamber won’t be afraid to ask for it. Infrastructure and capital expenditure are also high on the priority list for us locally as a Chamber but also nationally.”
Cpl Resources plc., Ireland’s largest recruitment, sponsored of the 2016 Waterford Chamber president’s lunch.
Positive report for Waterford Chamber at 229th AGM
Waterford Chamber elected its first ever French President, Laurent Borla, at the 229th AGM in the Granville Hotel last night (Monday, May 23rd).
Mr Borla has been an active member of Waterford Chamber for many years and said in his opening address that at this stage he is ‘nearly more Waterford than French’ having lived and worked in his adopted county for so long.
“To be part of such a rich heritage and to contribute in some small way is a very proud thing for me and my family, who are deeply rooted in this community”, he said.
Looking forward to the year ahead, Laurent announced job creation and economic growth as his key priorities, with a particular emphasis on start-ups and technology.
“I admit I love toys, I admire innovators and technology fascinates me. With these interests, Waterford is a great place to live, particularly as it is becoming a highly respected innovative technologically advanced city.”
Mr Borla said as the leading advocate for business in Waterford, Chamber intends to lobby the new Minister of State for Training and Skills at the earliest opportunity.
“We want jobs, we want education, we want skills and training and we as a Chamber won’t be afraid to ask for it. Waterford Chamber acts as a voice for all business and we are acutely aware of the challenges that businesses face. It is our priority to address those issues at a local, regional and national level. We will continue to work closely with Waterford City & County Council, the IDA, Enterprise Ireland and other key stakeholders including our membership, to secure future job creation opportunities for Waterford and the South East Region.”
Outgoing President Michael O’Dwyer said lots has been done to rebuild Waterford and there is still plenty to do.
“Waterford is steadily becoming a vibrant city to do business and we in Chamber are very proud to have been a strategic stakeholder in making this happen.
“There is so much to look forward to now – the significant infrastructural work ongoing and planned for our City, the strategic development zoning of the North Quays with demolition work underway, the plans for a new shopping centre, the Apple Market is due a major face-lift as part of the Urban Renewal Development, ArcLabs is about to undergo a major expansion, jobs being created by many of our leading companies, the West Pharma construction is at an advanced stage.....these are just some of the highlights and the list goes on.
“All of these factors and initiatives, in addition to the changing cityscape, have the potential to deliver a very significant economic boost for Waterford and the SE Region in the years ahead.”
Chamber CEO Nick Donnelly reported that Chamber is performing better than it has in years, which was reiterated by Treasurer Ronan Brazil, who confirmed that membership was growing and Chamber is in a very solid position to develop going forward.
Following official proceedings, the newly elected Board of Directors was announced with Paul Nolan, Dawn Meats being elected as Deputy President; the role of Vice President goes to Kathryn Kiely, WIT, while Teresa Jane O'Mahoney, BMCI Insurance & Investments, and Ronan Brazil, O'Sullivan Scanlon Brazil, are being retained as Company Secretary and Treasurer respectively.
In addition, the ladies came to the fore during the election process, with Ciara O’Connor, PricewaterhouseCoopers; Maria Clifford, Book A Room / Liberty Blue Estate Agents; Pamela Pim, Bank of Ireland and Jacqui Kielthy, Fieldmaster joining Neil Kennealy, Cantec Business Technology, as the new faces on the Board.
Existing Directors Danette Connolly, Home Instead Senior Care / NAS Centre; Jonathan Earl, B2B Communications; Kieran Walsh, The Munster Express; Nora Widger, Theatre Royal; Tina Darrer, Dooley's Hotel and Tony Power, Bausch & Lomb were also re-elected to serve for the next two years.
President: Laurent Borla, Senantra
Deputy President: Paul Nolan, Dawn Meats
Vice President: Kathryn Kiely, WIT
Secretary: Teresa Jane O'Mahoney, BMCI Insurance & Investments
Treasurer: Ronan Brazil, O'Sullivan Scanlon Brazil
Ciara O’Connor, PricewaterhouseCoopers
Danette Connolly, Home Instead Senior Care / NAS Centre
Well-being in the workplace to the fore at Chamber After Hours
Well-being in the workplace was the theme of the May Waterford Chamber Business After Hours hosted by Fieldmaster Ltd on the Quay.
Opening the event, John O’Gorman, Fieldmaster said they were delighted to present their newly renovated showroom to a corporate clientele. Trading locally for over 40 years and while continuing their important stationary business, Fieldmaster has now become the go to firm for all things ergonomics. John emphasised that a cared for and comfortable staff is essential to productivity and paid tribute to his own staff for their commitment and hard work.
The theme of the event was also endorsed by Mayor of the Metropolitan District, Cllr Eamon Quinlan who said: “Our health and our well-being are very much tied to our environments, essentially where we live and where we work.
“As some of you may know this week is Mayor’s Health Week. Every year the Metropolitan Mayor partners with the Healthy Waterford project to promote health and well-being in Waterford. This is health and well-being in its broadest sense so not just diet and exercise! While these are very important, they are not the whole story. This year we are concentrating on mental health and well-being, specifically promoting the factors that contribute to positive mental well-being. We are doing this through the #kindwaterford initiative.
“There is a definitive link between kindness and well-being. Performing and receiving acts of kindness has been proven to reduce social anxiety and improve overall levels of community well-being. A very simple action can have a profound effect and very simply, has the potential to make Waterford a better place to live for us all.”
Guest speaker Ilonda Parle, Sun Life Financial, gave an insightful overview of how the multi-national company has adopted a wellness structure to their employment policy resulting in increased productivity and reduced absenteeism.
Having engaged Fieldmaster for their recent state of the art office fitout, Ilonda said the workforce now operates in a setting that is comfortable, fully functional and caters to their busy work schedule, but is also mindful of health and well-being for all.
Waterford Chamber Vice President Paul Nolan thanked the packed showroom for their continued support and reminded members the Chamber AGM takes place on Monday, 23rd May in the Granville Hotel, where a new Board will be elected to serve the membership for the coming two years.
Waterford Chamber reserves the right to cancel an event due to low bookings or other circumstances which would make the event non-viable. If Waterford Chamber cancels an event, registrants will be offered a full refund where payment has already been made.
In the event that someone cancels attendance at a Chamber event the following conditions will apply:
Cancellations may be made in writing or via email, phone or fax
Cancellations made less than 72 hours before an event will be subject to a 50% cancellation fee
Cancellations received less than 48 hours before an event will not receive a refund.
Refunds will not be available for registrants who choose not to attend an event
To request a cancellation:
Send an email to
Send a fax to 051 876002
Post a letter to the Events Manager, Waterford Chamber, 2 George’s Street, Waterford