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Starting:

06/06/2024

08:30 am

Ending:

Same day

04:30 pm

Event type:

Face to face

Europa Hotel, Belfast

Ticket Price:

Member - £80.00 (+VAT)

Non-member - £100.00 (+VAT)

At a glance…

Save your seat for the annual All-Island Female Entrepreneurs Conference with our title sponsor AIB.

Each year, this conference offers the opportunity to develop, network, collaborate and be truly inspired by a room filled with over 300 women-led business owners.

This one-day event will focus on the theme of Grit and Growth, featuring leading female founders who will share their own business journeys. You will be motivated by how their hard work and resilience have helped them to push through the barriers and challenges of running a successful business. With a range of panel sessions and breakout masterclasses, you will also gain firsthand knowledge and resources on how to further grow your business and personal skill set.


*The full conference agenda will be announced soon. If you want to take your business to new heights, be part of this community and be sure to secure your ticket now.*
Who is it for?
This is the place to be for all women led businesses! Whether you see yourself as a 'freelancer', 'self-employed' or working on a 'side hustle' - don't let the word 'Entreprenuer' throw you off. Everyone is welcome, Women in Business members or non-members alike. 
How your business will benefit

Motivation to elevate your business plans | From celebrity investors such as Ed Sheeran and Russell Crowe, to making the Forbes 30 under 30 list - we'll hear from local successful female founders who have taken their business to new heights through their own personal Grit & Growth stories.

Grow your business with expert advice | We'll have practical masterclasses and panel discussions, providing you with tips and takeaways to instantly implement into your business. You'll have time to browse exhibition spaces and speak to business advisors from business agencies such as InterTradeIreland and Invest Northern Ireland to open new avenues for growth and support.

Expand your network across the island | Each year, this conference offers the opportunity to develop cross border connections and collaborations in a room filled with over 300 women-led business owners. We'll also have the live final of our All-Island Female Entrepreneurs Pitching Competition on stage throughout the day. Find out more on how to enter by Fri 3rd May.

Here's who you will hear from...

Caroline O'Neill

Caroline O'Neill

Conference Host

As a Business Coach and Social Media Consultant, Caroline embodies the spirit of entrepreneurship and continuous growth. With a rich background as the CEO of DIGG Childrenswear from 2008 to 2019, she has navigated the ever-evolving landscape of business with resilience and adaptability. In today's dynamic business environment, Caroline recognises the necessity of constant learning and adaptation - advocating for proactive learning, pushing boundaries and relentless customer engagement in the face of rapid digital evolution. Driven by a passion for seeing others succeed, she is dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs through their journeys. Whether it's sharing her wealth of knowledge or connecting individuals with resources, she is committed to uplifting others in their pursuit of business success. With Caroline as your conference host, expect an inspiring blend of experience, empathy and actionable insights to propel you forward on your entrepreneurial path.

Laura Bonner​​​​

Laura Bonner​​​​

CEO & Founder of The Muff Liquor Company

The Muff Liquor Company is inspired by the past and driven by the future. Join us as Laura Bonner takes the stage to share the grit and growth of her business journey, spanning from Inishowen, Donegal to Australia, with plans for expansion into the USA. This Award-Winning Premium Irish Spirit has garnered celebrity-approved investments from notable figures including actor Russell Crowe, comedian Jimmy Carr, and singer Ed Sheeran. As the driving force behind the business, Laura shapes the overall strategy, fosters new business relationships, nurtures existing ones and spearheads expansion initiatives. Laura's leadership has earned her prestigious accolades, including Ulster Business Woman of the Year 2019, Industry Era's Top 10 Most Inspiring CEOs of 2021, and Handcrafted Spirits Business Leader 2023, since the company's establishment in 2017.

Grá inne Mullins

Grá inne Mullins

Head Chocolatier & Founder of Gra Chocolates

Gráinne is an award-winning pastry chef, having spent years in esteemed kitchens, from Michelin-starred restaurants to collaborations with Irish culinary icons. Having been named Former Eurotoques Young Chef of the Year and recognised in Forbes 30 Under 30 (2023), Gráinne's culinary journey is marked by innovation and inspiration by the rich tapestry of flavours in County Galway. Grá Chocolates was launched in the midst of a pandemic as an online store from her parents' kitchen counter; creating luxurious, handcrafted chocolates using the finest ingredients with a touch of Irish magic. Gráinne joins us to delve into the world of Grá Chocolates and the Grit & Growth she has experienced in running her business over the past 4 years.

Karen Yates

Karen Yates

Founder of Taylor Yates

Karen Yates, an entrepreneur from Manchester, set out to revolutionise the hospitality industry in Northern Ireland. Inspired by the scenic Causeway Coast, she launched an eco-friendly handbag line, collaborating closely with her daughter. Together, they blend craftsmanship and sustainability, reflecting their commitment to quality and the environment. Karen's leadership has propelled her boutique hotel and handbag line to success, attracting travellers and fashion enthusiasts who share her dedication to luxury with a conscience. Her story inspires aspiring entrepreneurs, showcasing the power of passion, creativity and family collaboration in driving meaningful change.

Louise Doyle

Louise Doyle

CEO of Needi

Louise Doyle, Mum of three and CEO and co-founder of needi.co.uk, is revolutionising the corporate gifting industry with an intelligent gift-matching service. Alongside co-founder Steph Scholes, Louise has propelled Needi to the forefront, reshaping the way businesses approach corporate gifting. Needi has developed a cutting-edge gift matching algorithm that leverages AI and psychological principles. This innovative approach enables Needi to deliver an unparalleled corporate gifting concierge service, connecting businesses with perfect gifts from local independent businesses. Notably, industry giants such as Virgin, Spotify, QuickBooks, and KPMG Acceleris have benefited from Needi's expertise, saving substantial time and resources through their corporate gifting solutions. From personalised new-starter gifts and client onboarding incentives to branded merchandise and exclusive Christmas offerings, Needi is redefining the standard, fostering meaningful connections and enhancing employee and client satisfaction. Louise's vision to create the perfect combination of technology and human touch makes Needi a powerhouse in the corporate gifting realm, known for its efficiency, personalisation, and innovative, feel-good gifting experience.

Louise Brogan

Louise Brogan

LinkedIn Content Marketing & Training

Louise runs a boutique marketing agency working with entrepreneurs, SME’s and professionals who want to raise their profile through LinkedIn in a genuine and valuable way. As an international speaker, she hosts the LinkedIn with Louise Podcast and YouTube channel. For the past three years, Louise has been a Small Business Britain Champion, in the top 100 Small Businesses in the UK and the top 100 female entrepreneurs. In 2019, Louise was invited to attend No 10 Downing Street to represent small business and was invited in 2022 to meet King Charles at Buckingham Palace at a reception honouring Small Business contributions to the UK economy.

Claire Colvin

Claire Colvin

Simple Scaling

Claire is the Co-Founder of Simple Scaling and Co-Author of the Amazon Best Seller "Simple Scaling: 10 Proven Principles to 10x Your Business." Serving as a coach and mentor to scaling SME leaders worldwide, alongside her business partner, Brendan McGurgan, they established Simple Scaling Ltd. in 2020, aiming to inspire, connect, and enable ambitious leaders to scale purposefully. Drawing on nearly 50 years of collective scaling experience and extensive research, they developed the ScaleX™ framework, which is based on the 10 timeless principles that exist in successfully scaled businesses around the world. Their ScaleX™ Accelerator Programme has attracted over 70 ambitious SME leaders across Ireland to date, forming a thriving ScaleX™ alumni. In 2023, they hosted the inaugural ScaleX™ Summit in Belfast, featuring prominent speakers like Steven Bartlett, Marga Hoek, and Damian Hughes. With a goal to impact 1 million SME leaders by 2033, they are expanding their Accelerator Programme to Dublin and Manchester later this year. Recognising the vital role SMEs play in economies, they are committed to bridging the gap—only 2% of the 400 million SMEs globally achieve scale. Simple Scaling is poised to make a substantial impact in transforming this landscape.

Oonagh O'Reilly & Marie-Claire McGreevy

Oonagh O'Reilly & Marie-Claire McGreevy

MCO Performance

MCO Performance is a creative, innovative and action-oriented sales and marketing consultancy specialising in systemising commercial operations, motivation and mindset and creating high performance cultures. The pair have more than 30 years’ combined specialist expertise in driving transformational change and growth working with Top 100 brands and high growth scale ups including NI Chamber, Irish Football Association and Texthelp. They have a stellar track record in exceeding challenging revenue targets and providing leadership to grow and develop high-performing, multi-disciplinary teams to deliver substantial commercial growth. A passion for accountability-based leadership was the catalyst that led them to co-found MCO Performance. Having previously led the commercial function at the iconic ICC Belfast, Waterfront Hall and Ulster Hall venues, they empowered their intergenerational team to achieve significant success and become a high-performing unit. Now, they partner with blue chip clients such as Danske Bank and Sunday Times’ Top Track 100 and Best Places to Work Award winners including First Event to uncover the power of creating straightforward systems and processes that allow their teams to use more of their processing power for the magic, rather than the mundane.

Loretta Dignam

Loretta Dignam

CEO & Founder of The Menopause Hub

Loretta has pioneered menopause in Ireland. She is an award-winning Marketer of the Year, Women's Health CEO of the Year, Entrepreneur of the Year runner up in the Image Businesswoman Awards, and HI HI FemTech 2023 Winner. She opened the doors to The Menopause Hub, Ireland's first and only dedicated menopause clinic in January 2019. The Menopause Hub, is a centre of excellence for menopause, with two clinics in Dublin and a third in Cork. Loretta is a passionate advocate for menopausal women, smashing the taboo and striving to make menopause mainstream. She has also developed a CPD accredited programme to support organisations with menopause in the workplace awareness and education training, and policy development and hosts the Menopause Friendly Workplace Awards in partnership with Great Place to Work. She has had a lengthy and highly successful career working for many multinational, global businesses including; Mars Inc, Diageo plc, Kerry Group plc and Ardagh Group.

Ashleigh Averell

Ashleigh Averell

Managing Director of iBrand

Ashleigh Averell is the Managing Director of Ibrand, a thriving enterprise she founded at 22 years old, initially specialising in t-shirt printing & selling on Ebay! Today the company has expanded into uniforms, merchandise, and more recently signage due to a merger with family sign firm. The firm has also received an Innovate UK Creative Catalyst award, and is passionate about bringing sustainability as standard in her industry. Recognised as Young Businesswoman of the Year in 2024, Ashleigh balances her busy career with family and raising her two-year-old son, Patrick.

Lorraine Heskin

Lorraine Heskin

Founder and CEO of Gourmet Food Parlour

Hailing from a small village in Co. Galway, Lorraine studied in University of Limerick before heading off to New York for 4 years working in a diverse range of food businesses. On returning to Dublin, Lorraine made the decision to open their first 25 seater café in Dun Laoghaire in 2006. Through hard work and dedication, Gourmet Food Parlour has grown into a very successful business employing a team of almost 300 people across the group. With 8 locations across Dublin, Galway and Meath, Dun Laoghaire, Swords, Malahide, Santry, three restaurants in Arnotts on Henry Street, Salthill, Galway and Dunshaughlin Co Meath, with their ever-growing Catering & Event Business, it has been a busy 17 years. Lorraine’s hands on approach to running the business is the driving force behind GFP. Her dedication, determination & hard work filters down throughout the company. She creates a positive working environment throughout Head office and each location. Lorraine often speaks of Team GFP and how the strength of the brand is down to every person that works for her. Lorraine sets high standards and expectations for her team, which constantly challenges each individual to strive for better, and to ensure there is attention paid to every detail. To become a successful business, there needs to be a very committed, hard-working and driven leader at the helm and Lorraine is certainly all of these. Lorraine was an EY Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist in 2023, representing GFP in the Established Category as CEO and Founder. You will often see Lorraine featured on various panel discussions and networking events. As a leader in the food & beverage industry, Lorraine has been a judge for the Network Ireland Women in Business Awards, she has also been invited as the Keynote speaker at many separate networking events and as a keynote speaker at many high profile corporate and business events. Gourmet Food Parlour recently won a Gold “Deloitte Best Managed Company” for five years running.

Patricia O’Hagan MBE

Patricia O’Hagan MBE

CEO of Core Systems

As the co-founder and former CEO of Core Systems, a world leader in prisoner self-service technology, Patricia was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s 2013 Royal New Year Honours list for services to the Northern Ireland Economy. Coming from an engineering and product development background, she has over 20 years of Corrections Technology experience. Patricia led the company through a development and growth programme. The company developed various innovative technology solutions for the custodial sector, raising the standard within the industry. Patricia also served on the Skills for Security Consultation Group for Biometrics and Human Identity, contributing to the development of national occupational standards for the industry. She is active in the local community, encouraging greater female entrepreneurship and inspiring girls and women to consider roles in the technology sector.

Bevin Mahon

Bevin Mahon

Co-owner & Managing Director at Dental Tech Group

Bevin, is a dynamic leader known for transforming the dental industry. Under her guidance, Dentaltech has emerged as Ireland's premier 3D printing Denture Clinics group with multiple awards. With a focus on enhancing quality of life, Dentaltech offers comprehensive dental care, from implants to 3D digital dentures and routine dental services. Dentaltech is also the largest provider of portable dental and denture services to Nursing Homes and the Homecare sector. Bevin's strategic vision and commitment to innovation have propelled Dentaltech to unprecedented success. She is a certified employee engagement coach and actively participates in entrepreneurship programs, including Going for Growth, EY Winning Women and Vital Voices. Recognised for her leadership, Bevin has received prestigious awards such as winner of the Inspiring Women Awards and the All Star Inspiring Business Leader. Celebrating 50 years in business, Bevin spearheaded a digital transformation at Dentaltech, revolutionising denture manufacturing through advanced technology. This shift has enabled greater precision, efficiency, and product development opportunities like the Truefit range of Dentures, Removeable Veneers and Anti-Snoring Devices. With expansion plans underway, Bevin is leading Dentaltech towards national and international growth, recently opening three new locations and with plans to open 2 more locations within the next 12 months.

Have a look at what we got up to last year...

Location

Europa Hotel, Belfast

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