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					ISSn 1649-7589   VOL 07 | ISSUE 01 | DECEMBER 2010/JANUARY 2011

                 ALSO InSIdE
                 LOST IN TRANSLATION
                 Could a lack of language skills damage Irish exports?
                 EASY AS ABC
                 Business guru Robert Kaplan dispenses advice on running successful companies
                 CONNECTING PEOPLE
                 The challenges of managing staff based in overseas offices
                 THE SHIPPING NEWS
                 How the new Incoterms international trade rules save time and money
                 HOW GREEN IS MY VALLEY
                 Opportunities for Irish firms in the heart of the high tech sector

                 aIM It on

                 Ireland’s golden
                 chance to wIn
                 busIness In brazIl


022         012
                                                         Contents                                                                                                   001
THE MARKET                                                    COVER STORY
Enterprise Ireland
The Plaza                                                014 Aim it on Rio
Eastpoint Business Park                                       Ireland’s golden chance to win business in Brazil
Dublin 3
T: +353 1 727 2954/2000                                       REGIONS AND SECTORS

PUBLICATIONS MANAGER                                     029 Moulding a growth strategy
Duncan Black                                                  Plastics firm Mergon shows how Irish manufacturing can still compete globally

Gordon Smith
                                                         032 Remote control
E:                                     Irish companies are developing technology that helps geographically diverse teams work
T: +353 1 442 8776                                            better together.
SUBSCRIPTIONS                                            049 How green is my valley
Teresa Meagh
                                                              Opportunities for Irish firms in the heart of the high tech sector
T: + 353 1 727 2954
Maureen Egan                                             019 Easy as ABC
T: +353 1 727 2866
                                                              Business guru Robert Kaplan dispenses advice on running successful companies

Boyle Design Group
                                                         026 Prescription for success
                                                              Howard Beggs, CEO of Helix Health, on his plans to make an Irish market leader interna-
PROOF READING                                                 tional
Graham Smith

PRINTED BY                                               046 Accounting for the new economy’s road warriors
Turner Print Group
                                                              Tax advisory firm CXC saw its clients leave Ireland to win business – so it followed them
The Market magazine is sold by subscription
(+353 1 727 2970)
Readers may email comments and suggestions
to                     012 Lost in translation
                                                              Could a lack of language skills damage Irish exports?
The views and opinions expressed in
The Market are not necessarily those of
Enterprise Ireland. Published by Enterprise              022 Friends in high places
Ireland Corporate Marketing Team.
                                                              Partnerships with multinationals are opening doors for indigenous firms in foreign markets
                                                         035 Connecting people
                                                              Negotiating the pitfalls in managing staff based in overseas offices

                                                         038 Pleased to meet you, virtually
                                                              Making webinars work for your business

                                                         040 The shipping news
                                                              How the new Incoterms international trade rules save time and money

                                                         043 Mediate, don’t litigate
                                                              The art of settling commercial disputes without the cost of the courts


                                                         002 Noticeboard
                                                              News for and from the export community

                                                         052 Market Intelligence
    Magazines ireland          Magazines ireland              Updates on market research and trade regulations
 IrIsh MagazIne awards 2009 IrIsh MagazIne awards 2009
    CustoMer Magazine          Magazine designer
        of the year                of the year
                                                         056 Good reading
                                                              Paying the cost to be the boss
Enterprise Ireland is funded by the Irish
Government and part-financed by the European
Union under the National Development Plan
                                                         058 Travel News
                                                              Flights and travel update, including a city guide to Sao Paulo

                                                         060 The Back Page
                                                              When in … Brazil

                                                                                                                               dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
002 Noticeboard

    Surveys point to staff
    growth in 2011
    d   espite the economic
        uncertainty, some firms are
    planning to take on more staff
                                           an important indicator for future
                                           growth,” Regus said.
                                               Meanwhile a survey of
    next year. Two recent surveys,         1,000 Irish chief executives by
    published separately, show some        commercial property firm, CB
    optimism around growth for
    next year, and the need to hire
                                           Richard Ellis found that one in
                                           four expect to create more jobs in
                                                                                  European Parliament approves
    additional employees.
        The workspace provider Regus
                                           2011. Jobs aside, respondents to
                                           the CBRE survey were cautious
                                                                                  new rules against late payment
    polled opinions from 5,000 SME
    business owners worldwide,
                                           about prospects for next year.
                                           Half believe that European             t   he European Parliament
                                                                                      has voted in favour of a
                                                                                  new directive on combating
                                                                                                                        their invoices within 60 days,
                                                                                                                        unless they expressly agree
    including Ireland, and found that      Central Bank base rates will
    two in five intend to increase         remain unchanged next year,            late payment in commercial          – businesses will automatically
    headcount over the next six            while the remainder expect             transactions. The directive aims      be entitled to claim interest
    months.                                interest rates in the Eurozone         to give better protection to          for late payment and will also
        Regus concluded that               to rise slightly. Two-thirds of        creditors - in most cases SMEs        be able to obtain a minimum
    entrepreneurs are more prepared        chief executives expect the Irish      - while respecting the freedom        fixed amount of €40 as a
    to gamble on growth and hire new       economy to show positive growth        of contract.                          compensation for recovery costs
    staff than larger companies, since     in 2011 but of that number, most           The new provisions of the       – the statutory interest rate for
    the figure for small firms is higher   anticipate growth of less than         directive include:                    late payment will be increased
    than the 36 per cent average that      1 per cent. Almost half of chief       – harmonisation of period for         to at least eight percentage
    comprises companies of all sizes.      executives are less optimistic           payment by public authorities       points above the European
    In Ireland, 24 per cent intend to      about Irish economic prospects           to businesses                       Central Bank’s reference.
    hire more staff and 62 per cent        in the short- to medium-term           – public authorities will have to   – member states may continue
    said they are flexible about work      than they were a year ago, while         pay for the goods and services      to maintain or to bring into
    location for their employees.          two-thirds said that the ongoing         that they procure within 30         force laws and regulations
        “Given that in any economy         banking crisis is the factor having      days or, in very exceptional        which are more favourable
    SMEs usually account for over 50       the greatest negative impact on          circumstances, within 60 days       to the creditor than the
    per cent of employment this is         the Irish economy.                     – businesses will have to pay         provisions of the Directive.

    Boost for Irish exports as trade                                             Reduced red tape to save
    barriers lifted for small firms                                              firms €13 million per year
    n   ew measures to lift trade
        barriers for small businesses
    are to be launched and it is
                                           and transparency in relation to
                                           services and service providers and
                                           strengthens rights for consumers
                                                                                 t   he Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement has produced
                                                                                     a guidance note informing companies that directors’ names no
                                                                                 longer have to be pre-printed on headed paper – a move expected to
    anticipated this could swell Irish     and businesses.                       save businesses more than €13 million per year.
    services exports to Europe by up           Forfás said the real value of         Until recently, many firms understood that company law required
    to €16 billion per year.               Irish services exports could rise     them to scrap their headed paper every time there was a change in
        The Government has approved        between €13billion and €16            directorship – with all of the associated printing costs which have
    the regulations giving effect to       billion annually and 5,300 new        been estimated at €247 per company per year. It is thought that
    the services directive in Ireland.     jobs could be created as a result     around 55,000 changes of director occur annually.
    This should make it easier for         of the move. It added that foreign        Directors’ names can now be included in the footer of the letter
    businesses and consumers to buy        direct investment in services         template which allows them to appear automatically when each
    services in the single market.         will also be impacted and could       letter is written.
        The directive’s aim is to          increase by up to 20 per cent.            It is the latest initiative by the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and
    release the untapped growth                Last year, services exports       Innovation, Batt O’Keeffe TD, to cut out needless costs for businesses
    potential of services markets          amounted to €67 billion,              and make them more competitive. An inter-departmental group
    in Europe by removing legal            according to official CSO figures     of officials from all relevant departments has been tasked with
    and administrative barriers            and Ireland joins Germany as          identifying ways to ease the bureaucratic burden on companies and
    to trade in the services sector.       the only two eurozone countries       it has targeted a 25 per cent reduction in red tape requirements on
    The directive also sets down           to record an increase in export       business by 2012. Measures implemented since 2007 have saved
    measures to improve information        activity in the first half of 2010.   small firms €20 million in overheads, the Minister said.

Senior management must
lead corporate governance
C  ompany directors, board members and senior management must
   lead their organisations’ corporate governance agenda and ensure
that the highest standards are adopted, the head of the National
                                                                         CONOR LENIHAN TD, MINISTER FOR SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY AND
Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) has said.                          INNOVATION WITH BRIAN LONG, ATLANTIC BRIDGE GENERAL PARTNER
   Maurice Buckley, CEO of the NSAI, added that eliminating the
reputational damage surrounding corporate governance and risk
management failures in Ireland would be the only way to regain trust
                                                                         new €85 million VC fund
and support from investors.
   Speaking at the Dublin Chamber of Commerce recently, he called
                                                                         to help tech firms
for a more transparent and compliant corporate culture in Ireland.
   “Changing an organisation’s corporate governance culture
can only be achieved by setting the right tone at the top and
                                                                         P   rivate equity firm Atlantic
                                                                             Bridge has closed a new fund
                                                                         with €85 million to invest in Irish
                                                                                                               market technology assets,
                                                                                                               which it said has strong growth
                                                                                                               potential but is currently under-
demonstrating leadership. The benefits will soon follow. There is        firms, primarily in communication     served by both private equity and
an increasing amount of empirical data to support the position           technology, semiconductors and        the banking sector.
that better governance and risk management correlates to better          software sectors.                         Investments will range
shareholder value and company performance.”                                  The fund, known as Atlantic       between €5 million and €20
                                                                         Bridge II, is the ninth fund          million per company. The fund is

Look up and East for                                                     supported by the Government
                                                                         through Enterprise Ireland’s
                                                                                                               supported by Enterprise Ireland,
                                                                                                               European Investment Fund, Irish

opportunities                                                            Seed and Venture Capital
                                                                         Programme 2007-2012. Its
                                                                                                               national Pensions Reserve Fund
                                                                                                               and several private investors.
                                                                         backers said they expect to           Brian Long, Atlantic Bridge

a    ircraft leasing, China, India
     and South Africa represent
new opportunities with
                                      crisis years of 2007 and 2008.”
                                          Nicolas DeMascarel, a Hong
                                      Kong-based investment specialist
                                                                         complete a second closing in the
                                                                         coming months, bringing the total
                                                                                                               General Partner pointed to
                                                                                                               the “challenging financing
                                                                         money available to €130m.             environment” in which the
positive growth and asset class       described China in investment      The fund will be managed by           fund had been raised. “We see
innovation, a recent investment       terms as “like America in the      Atlantic Bridge Partners which        a lot of attractive investment
conference heard.                     mid-19th century”. He said it is   has €250m already under               opportunities from multiple
Speaking at Investec’s                on course to become the largest    investment, and has built up          sources in Ireland and Europe,
“International Investing;             market in the world, with          experience in the high tech           many of which fit with our
The Emergence of the Niche            phenomenal entrepreneurs.          sector. The firm said it plans        investment thesis and are
Specialist” conference at the             “The domestic market is        to target the huge opportunity        available at historically-attractive
Convention Centre, Investec           vast, with 160 cities in China     in Irish and European middle          valuation levels,” he said.
Ireland chief executive Michael       with populations over 1 million
Cullen said risk has become a fact    people, in comparison with,
for investors over the past couple    for example, nine in the US.       Ulster Bank waives
of years.
    Potentially high-returning
                                      China generates 8 per cent of
                                      the world’s GDP and 30 per cent
                                                                         charges for start-ups
investments need to be
considered in terms of the real
possibility that investors can lose
                                      of emerging market GDP,” said
                                      DeMascarel.                        u   lster Bank is to provide free transactional banking for start-ups
                                                                             and early-stage companies in an effort to drive economic recovery.
                                                                            Transaction fees for newly established and young businesses will
                                      MICHAEL CULLEN AND
some or all of their money.                                              be waived for two years when they become customers of the bank.
                                      AISLING DODGSON OF
    David Phillips, an aircraft       INVESTEC IRELAND                   Firms can also avail of up to €30,000 for development where personal
leasing specialist with Investec in                                      guarantees will not have to be backed by assets.
Australia, said Ireland has been a                                          The bank’s campaign for start-ups will be supported by a
global hub for aircraft leasing for                                      programme of events over the next two months, under the
many years, yet Irish investors                                          banner ‘Start-Up Live’. The events are run in association with
have rarely been given access to                                and are intended to provide advice, support
investments in aircraft.                                                 and networking opportunities throughout the country.
    “Aircraft is a very resilient                                           “This campaign will give new businesses the chance to meet
asset class and continued to yield                                       liked-minded businesses and advisers who can provide real insight
solid returns to investors right                                         and help on starting and growing their businesses,” said Declan
through the investment market                                            Fitzgerald, managing director of Business Banking at Ulster Bank.
                                                                                                                dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
004 Noticeboard                           Irish Business

                                                                             Pharma partnerships

                                                                             planned as 70
                                                                             executives meet MSD
                                                                             g   lobal pharmaceuticals giant
                                                                                 MSD, also known as Merck,
                                                                             was the focus of a licensing
                                                                                                                       Some weeks earlier, EI also
                                                                                                                   hosted 50 European buyers and
                                                                                                                   senior decision-makers from
                                                                             and partnership event held in         leading pharmaceutical and
                                                                             collaboration with Enterprise         biotech companies to showcase
                                                                             Ireland during October with the       Irish expertise in pharmaceutical
                                                                             aim of identifying partnership        and biotech plant design,
                                                                             opportunities such as research,       construction and engineering,
                                                                             technology or licensing               project management, process
                                                                             agreements with Irish companies       engineering, automation and
                                                                             that are developing world-class       cleanroom technology.
                                                                             healthcare technology and                 Global investment in the
    Irish firms get a                                                        medical solutions.
                                                                                 The event was attended by
                                                                                                                   construction of pharmaceutical
                                                                                                                   and biotech plants is expected to
    chance to score with                                                     more than 70 representatives
                                                                             of indigenous biotechnology
                                                                                                                   grow to €160 billion by 2014. In
                                                                                                                   the past two years Irish companies
    major French stadia                                                      and life science companies
                                                                             as well as academic research
                                                                                                                   have secured contracts worth more
                                                                                                                   than €80 million on building four
    investment                                                               community leaders. The session
                                                                             was followed by 30 one-to-one
                                                                                                                   facilities in Germany, Switzerland,
                                                                                                                   France and Belgium. Total
                                                                             meetings with Irish organisations     investment for these plants was €1
    o   n the pitch, our football and
        rugby teams may be having a
    dip in form but Irish skill off the
                                          companies secured contracts
                                          worth more than €200 million
                                          relating to the 2012 London
                                                                             which Enterprise Ireland has
                                                                             identified as having projects with
                                                                                                                   billion, which EI said was a sign of
                                                                                                                   the strong potential for Irish firms
                                                                             partnership potential. [For more      in this high-value sector.
    pitch was the focus for a recent      Olympics, and the hope is
                                                                             on partnering with large companies,       The EI event drew guests from
    inward buyer visit from leading       that Irish firms can compete
                                                                             read the story on page 22.]           Switzerland, Germany, France,
    French organisations in both          and win at international level.
                                                                                 Dr Brian O’Neill, manager         Spain, Scandinavia and Hungary,
    codes.                                   As part of the latest
                                                                             of Lifesciences with Enterprise       including senior figures from
        Enterprise Ireland has            campaign, several important
                                                                             Ireland, said strategic               Novartis, Sanofi-Aventis, Roche,
    launched a campaign to position       decision makers from the
                                                                             partnerships with leading             UCB and GlaxoSmithKline.
    Irish construction and services       French Professional Football
                                                                             multinationals are a critical         Many of those attending have
    companies to win business             League, the French Professional
                                                                             element in developing Ireland’s       responsibility for new production
    associated with the construction      Rugby League and the French
                                                                             life sciences industry. Dr Neil       facilities not just in Europe but
    of French grounds in the lead up      Rugby Federation visited Croke
                                                                             Boyle, managing director of           worldwide. During their visit
    to Euro 2016 and the recently         Park and the Aviva Stadium in
                                                                             MSD’s sales and marketing             the buyers requested, on average,
    announced renovation of several       Dublin, along with Thomond
                                                                             operations in Ireland, said           four individual meetings with
    rugby stadia around the country.      Park in Limerick. The delegation
                                                                             the company has a history of          the Irish companies present,
        Early indications are the         also included representatives
                                                                             partnerships that have accelerated    which EI said reflects the strong
    total work will involve building      from French construction,
                                                                             the availability of technologies to   global reputation of these Irish
    at least four new stadia and          engineering and architecture
                                                                             market.                               companies.
    renovating a minimum of ten           firms related to the stadia
    existing grounds over the next        development.
                                                                             PHARMA FACTS
    five years. The French spend for         During their visit, the         • Ireland is Europe’s largest net exporter of pharmaceuticals
    Euro 2016 alone is estimated to       buyers also met and heard            (approx. €40 billion in 2009)
    be approximately €1.7 billion.        presentations from a number        • 13 of the world’s top 15 bio-pharma companies have operations
        EI sees this as a tremendous      of Irish firms that have             in Ireland
    opportunity for Irish firms,          previous experience in stadium     • More than 80 facilities are located here, including some
    particularly those involved in        construction, innovative             recognised by industry as among the world’s most technologically
    the recent redevelopment of           building and design techniques,      advanced (e.g. Centocor in Cork and Pfizer in Grange Castle)
    Irish stadia. The campaign is         energy-efficient solutions and     • Total employment on these sites is close to 24,000
    similar to EI’s 2012 Olympics         bespoke customer relationship      • Indigenous Irish companies have played a key role in the design,
    Construction Campaign. Client         management.                          engineering and construction of these facilities


Exporting hope in                                                            As the Web Summit attracted
                                                                         a who’s who of technology
                                                                         experts and entrepreneurs
                                                                                                                    The various discussion
                                                                                                               streams covered subjects ranging
                                                                                                               from sales and marketing to

a time of caution                                                        – both from within Ireland and
                                                                         around the world – there was
                                                                         no shortage of information and
                                                                                                               investment and mobile strategy.
                                                                                                               These were complemented by
                                                                                                               the Spark of Genius award, which

       uge names from the world       that gaming has for the Irish      insight into current market           is designed to give Irish start-
       of technology arrived in       economy: with the summit split     trends for building a successful      ups a chance to pitch in front of
       dublin recently to speak       up into four main streams, one     business. This included               industry heavyweights.
at the fourth dublin Web              was dedicated to gaming alone.     advice from founder of ELC                 The Enterprise Ireland-
Summit. This two-day event saw        Paul Hayes of demonware and        Technologies, Jonathan Siegel,        supported datahug won the award
entrepreneurs and businesses                                                                                   for its business networking web
flock to the capital to hear what                                                                              application. datahug has been
the likes of Chad Hurley, co-                                                                                  privately tested by clients in the
founder and CEO of YouTube,                                                                                    US, UK and Ireland and has just
Skype co-founder niklas                                                                                        launched in public beta. Called
Zennstrom and Jack dorsey,                                                                                     “LinkedIn on steroids” by one
co-founder of Twitter, had to say                                                                              of the Spark of Genius judges,
about their own success as well                                                                                it works by selecting potential
as advising how budding start-                                                                                 business connections based on
ups should go about creating                                                                                   how well you might know them.
theirs.                                                                                                             The entire event was wrapped
    This was the technology                                                                                    up by a talk from Twitter co-founder
sector’s equivalent of Richard                                                                                 and chairman Jack dorsey who
Branson and donald Trump                                                                                       detailed his path to success with
popping in to dublin for the day.                                                                              the social networking service that
Most speakers at the summit                                                                                    now has over 150 million active
were the founders, CEOs and                                                                                    users per month. He said that
marketing people at successful                                                                                 the first things he learned in his
Irish start-ups with a keen                                                                                    early days of entrepreneurship
awareness of current economic                                                                                  pre-Twitter were “do not give up
realities but with the drive and                                                                               management rights to someone
                                      TWITTER CO-FOUNDER JACK DORSEY
optimism of those who have                                                                                     you don’t really know and secondly,
cracked the market and believe                                                                                 always have your hand on the pulse
that Ireland’s technology sector                                                                               of where the company is going.”
has more than a fighting chance.                                                                                    Perhaps the most profound
    The opening night of the                                                                                   advice he had to give was that
dublin Web Summit saw dylan                                                                                    Twitter was not an overnight
Collins take to the stage. As chief                                                                            success, nor did it work in its
executive of the rapidly expanding                                                                             first incarnation. When it was
online games firm Jolt, he has                                                                                 set up in 2000, it was originally a
seen recent successes including                                                                                Blackberry-based service. dorsey
a lucrative partnership with Hugh                                                                              said he realised that it was both
Hefner’s business empire to                                                                                    the wrong time and the wrong
create a popular online game.                                                                                  platform so he put the idea on
    Collins had two main points:                                                                               the shelf and dusted it off in 2006
rejection is only the beginning                                                                                when text messaging was really
and you must push through to                                                                                   becoming established in the US.
succeed; secondly, that Ireland is                                                                             This time around, Twitter took off.
on the cusp of becoming a centre      DATAHUG FOUNDERS CONNOR MURPHY AND RAY SMITH WITH                             “I think a lot of successful
                                      (CENTRE) COLM RAFFERTY, PARTNER, MAPLES & CALDER
for the global gaming industry.                                                                                entrepreneurship is not being lucky;
“Ireland is one of the biggest        david Coughlan of Havok – both     who was one of several speakers       it’s recognising fortunate situations,”
online gaming hubs in the world       Irish start-ups who have been      urging those present to embrace       he added. And the overwhelming
and no-one seems to know this.        acquired by large multinationals   failure. He advised Irish start-ups   feeling as the Web Summit
We should be shouting it from the     – were among those who             to go beyond their fear of failure,   wrapped up was that entrepreneurs
rooftops,” he said.                   talked about the opportunities     to be prepared to learn lessons       here in Ireland are already creating
    He was not the only one           for indigenous businesses and      if it does happen and dust            their own fortunate situations.
pointing out the huge potential       brands.                            themselves off and start again.       MARIE BORAN

                                                                                                                dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
006 Noticeboard                          Irish Business

                                         EC proposes increased                                                       ChipSensors
                                         R&d investment to boost                                                     in trade sale
                                         jobs and economy                                                            to US firm

                                         i ncreasing R&d investment from
                                           current levels of below two per
                                                                               use of public procurement of
                                                                               innovative products and services
                                                                                                                     t   exas-based Silicon
                                                                                                                         Laboratories Inc has
                                                                                                                     acquired the Irish firm
                                         cent to three per cent of GdP         and slow standard setting.            ChipSensors in an all-cash trade
                                         throughout Europe could create            “In early 2011, the               sale. Based at the University of
                                         3.7 million jobs and increase         Commission will make a                Limerick, ChipSensors develops
                                         annual GdP by up to €795 billion      legislative proposal to speed up      silicon sensor chips to detect
                                         by 2025, according to the office      and modernise standard-setting        temperature, humidity and
                                         of the European Commissioner          to foster innovation and enable       gases.
                                         for Research, Innovation and          greater interoperability between          The company was set up in
                                         Science.                              various technology-based              2005 by Tim Cummins after
                                             Patricia Reilly, a cabinet        systems,” said Reilly. She said       securing an initial investment
    Bright ideas                         member in the office of EC            organisations such as GS1, which      of €100,000 through a loan
                                         Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-         promote the implementation and
    wanted                               Quinn, was speaking at a              operation of global supply chain
                                                                                                                     note from the Bank of Ireland
                                                                                                                     Kernel Capital Equity Fund,
                                         briefing in dublin where she          standards, are critical players       an early-stage equity fund

    t  he Ignite Graduate
       Business Innovation
    Centre at UCC is offering a
                                         also presented the European
                                         Commission’s recently launched
                                         ‘Innovation Union’ initiative. This
                                                                               needed in the successful rollout of
                                                                               standards-based systems.
                                                                                   At the forum, GS1 Ireland
                                                                                                                     supported by Bank of Ireland,
                                                                                                                     Enterprise Ireland and private
    free 12-month programme              sets out a strategic approach         chief executive Jim Bracken               Since 2005, a further eight
    for entrepreneurs who                to transform Europe into an           revealed initial details of an        separate investments by the
                                         Innovation Economy and to             innovative healthcare pilot project   Bank of Ireland Kernel Capital
    have recently graduated
                                         respond to the challenges of          that was recently completed in        Equity Fund in ChipSensors
    from a third-level                   global competition.                   The Galway Clinic. The CLASS          followed, including when
    institution.                         The Commission’s ‘Innovation          project (Clinical Laboratory          the company announced in
       The aim of the                    Union’ approach is to use public      Automated Stockroom System)           April a €2m investment from
    programme is to                      sector intervention to stimulate      is backed by GS1 Ireland,             a syndicate that included
    accelerate business                  the private sector and to remove      Georgia Tech Ireland and the          Enterprise Ireland and London-
    start-ups and to convert             bottlenecks which currently stop      Western Vascular Institute and        based ETV Capital.
                                         ideas reaching the market.            has developed a model solution            Total investment by the
    innovative ideas into
                                             These obstacles include lack      for more effectively managing         Bank of Ireland Kernel Capital
    products and services.
                                         of finance, fragmented research       medical device inventory              Private Equity Fund was €1.95m
    The scheme is being run in           systems and markets, under-           throughout the hospital.              and the fund confirmed that it
    partnership with the Cork
                                                                                                                     has sold its 40 per cent share
    County and City Enterprise
                                         New business and social network                                             holding in ChipSensors.
    Boards and is sponsored                                                                                              Niall Olden, managing
    by Cork County Council,              launched for Irish in Boston                                                partner of Kernel Capital

    Cork Chamber, the data                 N Boston, a business, cultural and social network for friends of          called the deal an “excellent”
    management firm EMC                    Ireland – both Irish-born and Irish-American – was launched               trade sale. “The transaction
    and PFH technology group.            last month. Membership is open to anyone who is interested in               demonstrates how early stage
                                         participating more actively in the Irish community in Boston, to            high potential companies can
       The programme
                                         make connections either professionally or socially.                         be nurtured and supported
    commences in January
                                             The group’s backers say IN Boston is both a local organisation          while simultaneously generating
    2011. Applications can                                                                                           excellent returns for investors,”
                                         and an affiliate of a national and global network supported by the
    be made via the website              Government of Ireland. Members have privileged access to an online          he added., where                 database of Irish and Irish-American professionals in Boston and in             Silicon Labs pointed to
    you can download an                  other chapter cities.                                                       ChipSensors’ strong design
    application form to submit               Intended to tap into the Irish diaspora in the US, members of           team and the Irish company’s
    with your CV. The closing            IN Boston will have one-stop access to pooled information about             sensor products that have a
                                         social and cultural events, business and employment opportunities,          strong synergy with the US
    date for applications is
                                         and more. Further information is available online at www.                   firm’s existing products aimed
    Friday 10 December.                                                                                              at similar end markets.

               Middle East trade mission brings in
                 €36 million in customer wins

       week-long trade mission            An agreement to secure long-     three-storey laboratory building   agribusiness dates back to 1976
       to the Middle East in          term work in Saudi Arabia was        in Riyadh.                         when the Almarai dairy foods
       November came home             brokered by civil engineers P           Staying with the food theme,    company was established by the
with deals worth more than €36        Elliott & Co and Wills Brothers      the business and investment        McGuckian brothers and Prince
million, with significant wins        who together secured a new joint     consultancy Farrelly & Mitchell    Sultan bin Mohammed bin Saud
for the construction sector in        venture with the Alzahid Group       led an industry seminar on         Al Kabeer.
particular.                                                                                                       On the UAE leg of the trip, the
The mission was led by                                                                                        Cork-based parking-solutions
Enterprise Trade and Innovation                                                                               company GlobeTech announced
Minister Batt O’Keeffe TD,                                                                                    that it had secured a contract
accompanied by Enterprise                                                                                     worth €2.2m with Abu Dhabi’s
Ireland chief executive Frank                                                                                 Department of Transport, the
Ryan and it travelled to Riyadh,                                                                              second that GlobeTech had won
Jeddah and Dammam in Saudi                                                                                    from the Department. Also in
Arabia and to Abu Dhabi and                                                                                   the UAE, Waterford company
Dubai in the United Arab                                                                                      Ardmore Equine Nutrition
Emirates.                                                                                                     opened a new base in Dubai from
    There are now more than                                                                                   which to grow their business
70 Irish firms doing business                                                                                 servicing the Emirates’ horse and
in Saudi Arabia and 20 have a                                                                                 camel industries. The new base
full-time market presence in the                                                                              is the culmination of Ardmore
country. A similar number of                                                                                  having been exporting for more
Irish firms are doing business                                                                                than 20 years to the Gulf region
in the UAE and 55 have a                                                                                      and the Emirates in particular.
presence there. Between them,                                                                                     The mission earned wins too
Saudi Arabia and the Emirates                                                                                 for the Irish public sector with
accounted for €676 million worth                                                                              the Blanchardstown, Cork and
of Irish exports last year.                                                                                   Carlow Institutes of Technology
    One of the biggest wins                                                                                   lined up to provide vocational
was secured by Woodfit Ltd, a                                                                                 skills training to Saudi students
second-generation family joinery                                                                              and the Athlone, Waterford and
firm employing 28 people in                                                                                   Galway-Mayo Institutes gaining
Athlone, which won a €1.5                                                                                     approval to deliver masters
million contract to work on the                                                                               programmes to Saudi scholarship
                                      JASON LARKIN, GENERAL MANAGER, WOODFIT;
construction of Saudi Arabia’s        AL KHALDIA HALLSTAGE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR KHALED HAMMOUR;                 students.
Princess Noura University.            MINISTER BATT O’KEEFFE TD AND FRANK RYAN, ENTERPRISE                        “The scale and breadth
                                      IRELAND CHIEF EXECUTIVE
Woodfit manufactures specialist                                                                               of contracts secured by Irish
acoustic and non-acoustic timber      that will allow them to carry out    ‘Food Security – Global Trends     firms during this mission
panelling. The new university is      large construction projects in the   and Opportunities in Saudi         provides a glimpse of the scale
said to be the largest construction   kingdom. The Saudi construction      Arabia’. The consultancy, which    of opportunity for Irish firms in
project in the world at present,      market is the largest in the         specialises in mergers and         this market,” said Frank Ryan.
with 125,000 people working on        Middle East-North African            acquisitions, entered the Saudi    “Breaking into the Saudi market
the site, which will eventually       region with projects worth over      market two years ago and has       and other markets in the Gulf
become an all-women campus            $215 billion underway this year.     build up a healthy pipeline        requires hard work and a keen
providing education to 30,000         Meanwhile, project management        of large scale agribusiness        focus on relationship-building.
students. Minister O’Keeffe said:     specialists PM Group announced       consultancy work with its local    However, the companies we
“Woodfit has shown how a small        that the Saudi Food & Drug           partner Mr Usamah M Al-Kurdi.      met during the mission were
Irish firm can win a prestigious      Authority has appointed it to        Farrelly & Mitchell recently       extremely positive towards Irish
international contract by             provide full design development      opened an office in Riyadh to      companies and Irish products
tailoring high-quality, innovative    and technical engineering            better serve the Saudi market      and they were clear in their
product lines to specific             studies for the reconstruction       and the Gulf region in general.    message that they are very open
customer demands. “                   and refurbishment of an existing     Irish involvement in Saudi         to working with us.”

                                                                                                               dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
008 Noticeboard                           Irish Business

    Online marketing provider                                                  InterBev award
    minds how it grows                                                         cheers Trustwater
    On-demand marketing software company                                           rustwater, the Tipperary-based   solution is a powerful detergent,
    CustomerMinds has doubled its annual turnover in its                           manufacturer of alternative      trademarked Aversol, and the
    second full year of trading and expects to double or                       cleaning and disinfection            other an effective disinfectant,
    treble turnover in 2011, reports Cian Molloy.                              technologies, is expecting a 300     trademarked as Ecosol. The
                                                                               per cent increase in revenues in     benefits of using these two
                                                                               the coming year after a major        solutions instead of traditional

    t   he company was founded
        in 2007 by Mike McMahon
    and Johnny Parks, with the
                                                                               international innovation award
                                                                                                                    cleansers include a 50 per cent
                                                                                                                    reduction in the amount of
                                                                                   As a result of winning           cleaning water used and energy
    aim of providing marketeers
                                                                               the ‘Best New Bottling,              savings of up to 60 per cent.
    with an easy-to-use way of
                                                                               Manufacturing or Production              Trustwater’s clients include
    measuring, and improving, the
                                                                               Technology Innovation’ at this       Coca-Cola, Fyffes, Shell
    effectiveness of online marketing
                                                                               year’s InterBev event in the         Chemicals and Planmeca and
    communications. It launched a
                                                                               United States, Trustwater is         Trustwater systems have been
    beta version of its product in 2008
                                                                               receiving dozens of additional       installed in beverage plants in
    and launched a full version of the
                                                                               enquiries from potential             China, Philippines, Malaysia,
    product in Q1 of 2009.
                                                                               customers across the globe,          Brazil and Mexico. Additionally,
        “Effectively we had our first
                                                                               said CEO and company founder         the company has been successful
    full year of trading in 2009 and      MIKE MCMAHON, CO-FOUndER,            Edmond O’Reilly.                     in marketing its sterilisation
    are now in our second year with       CUSTOMERMIndS
                                                                                   “More importantly, the award     technology to the Health
    a turnover touching €1m,” said        potential customer, for example,
                                                                               has given additional reassurance     Service Executive in Ireland
    McMahon. “Johnny founded the          has browsed a BMW website and
                                                                               to potential customers whom we       and the NHS in the UK. Other
    e-learning company Electric           looked at a model in a particular
                                                                               are already in discussions with      Trustwater applications include:
    Paper, which became ThirdForce,       colour, you can ensure that an
                                                                               and they are now keener to sign      Legionella prevention in water
    and I worked with him there.          image of that model in that colour
                                                                               up to start using our technology,”   systems and cooling towers and
    Together, we decided to try and       is used in future online marketing
                                                                               he said. “InterBev is an American    environmental decontamination.
    create something that would           campaigns targeted at that
                                                                               event, but it has an international       At present, the company has
    bring the same ease-of-use to         individual.”
                                                                               profile. Winning this award has      offices in Ireland, the United
    online marketing that we had              In March this year,
                                                                               put us on the world stage and has    States, Norway and Germany
    achieved for e-learning with          CustomerMinds opened an
                                                                               brought us to the attention of a     and employs 45 people. It
    Electric Paper. Essentially, we       EMEA office in Reading and has
                                                                               lot more people.”                    plans to open three further
    have created something that           since secured 35 ‘significant’
                                                                                   The technology developed         overseas offices in 2011. “We see
    gives marketing people direct         new clients in the UK, Ireland,
                                                                               by Trustwater is a patented          our biggest opportunities for
    access to online communications       the USA, Belgium, Luxembourg,
                                                                               electrochemical process that         turnover growth in developing
    data where previously they had        netherlands, Singapore and India.
                                                                               converts a mixture of water          countries – Brazil, China and
    to work via a technical support           “Our plan was to focus on
                                                                               and salt (sodium chloride)           India,” O’Reilly said.
    team.”                                one country at a time, starting
                                                                               into two solution streams: one       CIAN MOLLOY
        At the heart of CustomerMinds     with the UK,” said McMahon.
    is a central database that            “But thanks to recommendations
    stores customers’ demographic,        and referrals, we are building
    preference and successive             a worldwide customer base,
    interaction details. When used        often as a result of winning a
    for email and SMS campaigns,          contract in one territory with a
    opt-outs and ‘bounces’ are            multinational who then wants to
    automatically handled to ensure       use CustomerMinds in another
    customer lists remain clean, up-      territory.
    to-date and compliant with data           “We are operating a software-
    protection regulations.               as-service business model, which
        In addition to demographic        keeps sale and distribution costs
    segmentation, the                     to a minimum but, because we
    CustomerMinds product                 have a renewal rate in excess of
    allows segmentation based on          90 per cent, we have a good base
    previous responses to marketing       for going forward at the start of
    information. McMahon said: “If a      every year.”                         TRUSTWATER CEO EDMOND O’REILLY

                                                                                                                   Irish Brief                           009

                                                                              Sammon Group                         OpenJaw Technologies
                                                                                                                   has won a deal to deploy
                                                                              nets €120                            its online selling platform
                                                                                                                   and dynamic packaging
                                                                              million school                       solution to run the website
                                                                              buildings deal                       of Chile’s largest travel
                                                                                                                   agency Turismo Cocha.
                                                                                                                   The new site lets visitors
                                                                              t   he engineering and
                                                                                  construction firm Sammon
                                                                              Group has secured contracts
                                                                                                                   search for flights, hotel
                                                                                                                   accommodation and
                                                                                                                   insurance products which
                                                                              totalling €120 million to build      can then be combined to
                                                                              five state-of-the-art primary        dynamically build travel
                                                                              schools for the Abu Dhabi            packages to meet their
                                                                              Education Council (ADEC), part       individual requirements.
                                                                              of Abu Dhabi government.
                                                                                  By the time these projects       Online back-up provider
                                                                              are completed in the next 10         KeepITsafe has signed a
                                                                              months, the Kildare firm will        partnership agreement
PIERO TINTORI, TERMINALFOUR CEO                                                                                    with IT CMS Peripherals to
                                                                              have delivered some one million

TerminalFour now in                                                           sq ft of school accommodation in
                                                                              time for the new school year next
                                                                                                                   expand into the UK market.
                                                                                                                   The Dublin company

recruitment mode                                                              August. The contract represents
                                                                              one third of the total spend on
                                                                                                                   backs up a firm’s data via
                                                                                                                   the internet and stores it
                                                                              new schools under the first phase
                                                                                                                   securely off-site in multiple
On the back of increasing sales, the web content                                                                   data centres. KeepITsafe,
management system (CMS) company TerminalFour is                               of the Abu Dhabi Future School
                                                                                                                   which is ISO27001 certified,
                                                                              Programme and is the biggest
continuing to recruit new staff, writes Cian Molloy.                                                               will have its service
                                                                              amount awarded to a single
                                                                                                                   provided through CMS’s

f   ounded by CEO Piero Tintori
    in 1996, while he was still a
student at dCU, TerminalFour
                                      CMS suppliers,” Miller told The
                                      Market. “These contracts will
                                      automatically go to tender, but
                                                                                  Each school will have the
                                                                              capacity to cater for between
                                                                                                                   network of resellers in the

began by offering website             whenever we make a tender bid,          1,225 and 1,500 students and         Dornan Engineering,
design services before launching      we always have a face-to-face           the school designs incorporate       which is headquartered
its CMS product in 2002 and           meeting. It’s a golden rule – the       sustainability features including    in Little Island, Cork, has
secured dozens of blue chip           best way to sell to people is to        energy-efficient air conditioning    reported that its turnover
clients in Ireland, including         meet them.                              systems and water-saving             has increased 30 per cent,
Government departments and                “We also put a lot of effort into   devices. The electricity needed      from €50 million in 2009 to
State enterprises, before turning     networking; meeting people at           for daily consumption in             more than €65 million this
its attention to the export market.   higher education conferences and        classrooms will be generated on      year. The company provides
     The company has been             trade shows and hosting online          the school site.                     mechanical, electrical and
particularly successful in selling    events of our own. As a result,             The designs also comprise        instrumentation services to
its out-of-the-box solution           we are now selling into other           leading-edge technology features,    industry sectors including
overseas to the higher education      sectors – in the US, we have            sport facilities, swimming pools,    oil and gas, life sciences,
                                                                              auditoriums, labs and ICT rooms,
                                                                                                                   energy and manufacturing,
market – its first sale was to        secured our first sale outside
                                                                                                                   in the UK, Scandinavia,
Britain’s biggest university          the education sector with a large       dedicated classrooms for music
                                                                                                                   Continental Europe and
Manchester University and since       insurance company and in the UK         and art, libraries and other
then TerminalFour has become          we are securing commercial and          spaces which can be used by the
the CMS market leader in the          government deals. We signed up          community after school hours.        Tango Telecom has
British higher education sector.      four local authorities in the UK             Sammon Group, which has         deployed its messaging
These UK wins have helped it          this year and we now have about         been operating in the United         platform in Open Mobile’s
secure further higher education       220 clients in total.                   Arab Emirates for three years,       CDMA network in Puerto
sales in the US, Canada, South            “We are recruiting and that         has already built a number of        Rico. Tango said its
Africa and elsewhere, says COO        is one of our biggest challenges        education facilities in the region   iAX SMS suite of products
david Miller.                         – finding the right people. We          and is now the largest provider      has reduced the cost per
     “Our name is now sufficiently    currently employ one person in          of school accommodation              message for the Puerto
well-known in US higher               the US, one in the UK and 44 in         there. The Group is currently        Rican operator and
education for our name to be          Ireland. We are now looking for         tendering for kindergartens,         “significantly increased”
included when any institution         technical and sales people in a         private education facilities and     the speed of message
is drawing up a list of potential     variety of locations.”                  universities in the Gulf region.     delivery.

                                                                                                                    dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
010 Noticeboard                           Irish Business

    nothing wasted as Cynar                                                     Innovalight founder wins
                                                                                entrepreneur award
    signs plastics-to-fuel deal
    A Portlaoise firm, Cynar Plc, has signed a deal to build
    the first of 10 plants in the UK to convert end-of-life
                                                                                C  onrad Burke, founder of the solar energy company
                                                                                   Innovalight, has been awarded Ernst & Young Emerging
                                                                                Entrepreneur of the Year. A graduate of physics from Trinity
    plastics into diesel into fuel, writes Cian Molloy.                         College, he set up Innovalight five years ago. The company
                                                                                has developed patented technologies and materials that allow
                                                                                crystalline silicon cell manufacturers to produce solar cells with

    t  he deal will see SITA UK, a
       division of the French firm
    Suez Environment, process
                                          uses liquefaction, pyrolysis and
                                          distillation to produce diesel
                                          and kerosene, which can be
                                                                                higher conversion efficiencies. The 55-person company, which is
                                                                                based in Silicon Valley, has filed more than 60 patents and has
                                                                                recently been receiving significant global profile.
    60,000 tonnes of plastic that         sold to consumers, plus a non-

                                                                                 Success is now a cert
    would otherwise go to landfill        condensable plastic that is used
    using Cynar’s patent-applied-for      to partly power the conversion

                                                                                 for Integrity Solutions
    technology.                           process. Additionally, there is
                                          some char matter produced as a
                                          result of contaminants within the
                                          plastic (ink, paper-labelling, food
                                          residue, etc), which comprises         i T security compliance and
                                                                                   infrastructure specialist
                                                                                 Integrity Solutions is to increase
                                                                                                                      as crucial to the next stage in
                                                                                                                      its growth plans. Providing
                                                                                                                      evidence to clients that it meets
                                          about 3 per cent of the volume
                                          of the original waste plastic,         its focus on the UK financial        information-security best-
                                          but Murray says he is hopeful of       services sector after becoming       practice requirements increases
                                          finding a use for this residue.        certified to the ISO 9001 and ISO    the number of tenders that
                                              While the system can handle        27001 standards.                     Integrity Solutions can now
                                          almost all plastics currently being        Certification for its            compete for.
                                          sent to landfills, Murray said:        quality management systems           “We’ve had a lot of interest
                                          “What we are really interested         and information security             from all business sectors in ISO
        Cynar Plc’s CEO Michael           in processing is the end-of-life       management systems has               27001,” said Integrity managing
    Murray said that since the deal       rubbish that isn’t wanted by the       created new opportunities to         director Eoin Goulding. “Having
    with SITA UK was announced, the       plastic recycling companies. In        fuel the growth of the company,      this certification proves to our
    firm has received enquiries from      fact, you could use our system         which recently announced a 65        customers that we strive to
    around the world and that deals       to get rid of plastics that have       per cent increase in revenues        achieve the highest standards in
    in other territories were likely to   already been sent to landfill;         from €4.6 million in 2008 to €7.7    security. Now we’re primed to
    follow shortly.                       we’ve already been talking to an       million in 2009.                     capitalise on new opportunities
        Currently, the firm employs       American company that is mining            Founded in 2005, Integrity       and take our business to
    15 people at its headquarters         landfills. Landfill mining would be    Solutions provides IT security       the next level. “With these
    in Portlaoise with another            easier in the UK than in Ireland,      solutions to private and public      key certification milestones
    50 employed indirectly at its         because they have kept a much          sector organisations throughout      achieved, we expect to be able to
    preferred engineering supplier        better record of precisely where       Ireland and the UK. Following        accelerate our expansion in the
    Rockwell Automation in Cork. The      everything is dumped.”                 an investment of €1.05 million       Irish and, particularly, the UK
    deal with SITA UK will see 100            Murray is confident that the       to fund the construction of a        market and to benefit from an
    jobs created in Britain.              SITA UK deal will be the first         new network operations centre        absolutely unique competitive
        Murray founded the company        of many: “We are excited by the        at its Dublin headquarters,          edge in the buoyant Irish
    in 2005 with the aim of developing    prospect of seeing our technology      the company saw ISO 9001             outsourced managed security
    a system to convert waste plastics    becoming both a manufacturing          and ISO 27001 certification          services market.”
    to fuel. After searching the world,   and mainstream reality thanks          EOIN GOULDING, INTEGRITY SOLUTIONS MD, SARAH O’DONNELL,
                                                                                 MARKETING MANAGER, CERTIFICATION EUROPE AND INTEGRITY SOLUTIONS
    he found ‘a rudimentary system’       to our agreement with SITA UK.
                                                                                 TECHNICAL DIRECTOR SEAN ROONEY
    in Japan, bought the technology       We believe we have found an
    and started work to develop a         entrepreneurial partner who can
    commercial application. “We went      help us ensure that the years of
    through some very dark days of not    research will be realised in the
    knowing would we make it – it was     near future, with vehicles running
    almost pure ignorance that kept us    on plastic-derived diesel and the
    going on a very dark road; I don’t    practical commercial benefit
    know if I would like to go through    derived from dealing with the
    that again,” he told The Market.      world’s growing waste-plastic
        The system now developed          mountain.”


In Hand Guides pops
Cork on NYC deal
i n Hand Guides, the Cork-based
  company providing low-cost
embedded audio players, has
                                       The hope is that this first bite of
                                       the Big Apple will lead to further
                                       affinity deals around the globe.
                                                                              Promoting the internationalisation
                                                                              of Irish companies – know-how on
won a bite of the Big Apple, after         Under the terms of the deal
securing an affinity partnership       with Twin America, its two bus
                                                                              the business of exporting, and
with tour company Twin America,        companies will sell the audio          winning sales overseas.
operators of CitySights nY and         players to their customers,
Gray Line new York.                    allowing visitors to freely roam       * Interviews with experienced exporters
    Under the deal negotiated          areas, such as Wall Street and         * Overseas market opportunities, by sector
with support from Enterprise           Broadway, at their own pace            * Legal briefings and trade regulations
Ireland’s offices in new York,         while receiving a one-to-one           * Analysis and advice
IHG will design and manufacture        tour. After their visit to new York,   * Enterprise Ireland’s support programmes
a branded, bespoke audio device        customers get to keep the ultra        * Events
to be used by the three million        low-cost players as a souvenir of
visitors using CitySights and Gray     their trip to the city. Each device    Subscribe to The Market for one year €54
Line buses to tour the city that       comes with a set of headphones,        plus vat (€61.29) for 6 issues.
never sleeps.                          volume control and track playing
    IHG CEO and founder Trevor         similar to that on a Cd player         Subscribe online
Winckworth reckons the deal will       or Walkman – play, pause, stop,        Contact us on 01.727.2954 or email
generate more than €500,000            forward and back. The embedded
worth of revenue over the next         technology ensures that the
12 months and will allow his           audio content is secure and audio
company to recruit additional          content capacity starts at 60
technical and support staff. The       minutes worth of playing time.
resulting publicity surrounding the        Following the deal with Twin
deal has generated expressions of      America, IHG opened new offices
interest from tour bus operators in    on Park Avenue and unveiled a
Chicago and Orlando.                   new website, www.inhandguides.
    Previously, IHG had won deals      com to complement this
to provide its credit-card sized       development.
audio players to tour operators            In addition to the tourism
in its home city Cork, in dublin,      industry, IHG is targeting its
Belfast, London, Sydney and            product at health and lifestyle
in South Africa, but its first         information providers, such as
American contract is a major           primary healthcare providers,
coup. new York has a total of 12       insurance companies and lobby
sightseeing companies, operating       groups. Winckworth said: “Our
250 tour buses, but CitySights nY      audio devices are suitable for
and Gray Line are the two most         direct communication on key
prominent operators.                   issues like obesity and diabetes.”
    Gray Line is a particularly        The Irish Cancer Society has
well-known brand, as it offers         already used IHG devices to
sightseeing tours in more than 150     provide a ‘Giving Up Smoking
tourist locations on six continents.   Audioguide’.

                                                                                                    dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET

                                           While there has been much focus on developing skills in
                                           maths and science disciplines, Deirdre McPartlin warns that
                                           declining foreign language skills could harm Irish firms’
                                           chances of success in export markets.

                                           lost in
                                           THE DILEMMA                                                   While Matt is a product of fiction,

                                                                                                         his situation is not, as anyone
                                                  att has developed a great product for the dairy        in the Enterprise Ireland team
                                                  industry and has done some research. Germany           in Europe can testify. A lack of
                                                  is the fifth and France the eighth largest dairy       foreign language research and
                                           producer. Apart from some high-level information, the         communication skills can lead to
                                           detail he requires to go about entering these markets         either
                                                                                                         – a lack of awareness, avoidance
                                           does not seem to be out there. At least it might be,
                                                                                                            of or lack of persistence in
                                           but as he speaks neither French nor German, it is
                                                                                                            what are often the most
                                           impossible for him to search or             attractive markets for that
                                           The problem is, none of the other people in the                  company’s products and
                                           company speak French or German either. In fact,                  services
                                           he has trouble trying to think of anyone who could            or
                                           help him – except his friend Kate who did a BComm             – handing over European
                                           with German but went to work in a bank and never,                markets too early to
                                                                                                            insufficiently vetted partners
                                           ever put her language skills to use. “Never mind,
                                                                                                            rather than going direct, or
                                           plenty of opportunity in the UK [the tenth largest
                                                                                                            before obtaining a deep enough
                                           dairy producer],” he thinks, “and when I need to                 understanding of that market
                                           start expanding further, I’ll just target other English-         to enable the identification and
                                           speaking markets on other continents.” He tries not              management of an effective
                                           to worry that he’s not capitalising on the geographic            partner.
                                           proximity, ease of doing business and zero currency
                                           risk in two of the top 10 markets for his product. He         MIND YOUR LANGUAGE
                                                                                                         As the products and services
                                           hopes he won’t find out in years to come that he has
                                                                                                         from Ireland’s indigenous
                                           a competitor in the Netherlands who started after             sector became increasingly
                                           him with an inferior product but who, using the multi-        sophisticated in the past decade,
                                           lingual skills of his Dutch employees, has established        foreign language capability and
                                           an infrastructure and loyal customer base in Germany          cultural awareness has declined.
                                           and France which will prove difficult to dislodge.            Result: while the percentage
                                               Matt wonders whether he can visit a few trade             of exports to Europe compared
                                                                                                         to the UK has increased, these
                                           shows in the hope of stumbling across a company that
                                                                                                         markets remain largely untapped
                                           could act as a local partner in these markets – in fact, in
                                                                                                         sources of potential. Recent
                                           desperation, he’ll accept anyone who sounds like they         news is not encouraging: a
                                           understand something about the industry and speaks            higher failure rate amongst
                                           English.                                                      junior cert students in modern


languages and Eurostat findings        compensated by the advantages        speakers applying for the            difficult, unknown foreign SMEs
showing Ireland scraping along         of being native English-speakers     “Graduates for International         find it twice as challenging.
the bottom of foreign language         as far as export intensity is        Growth” programme started            Germany’s demographics
league tables.                         concerned. In fact, he concludes     me thinking. How difficult           mean than this problem will be
      nothing to worry about if        that language complacency is         will it become for existing          amplified in the coming decades
we all believe that just because       a substantial factor explaining      and emerging Irish exporters         as its exporting and domestically
English has become the most            the poorer export performance        to Germany to sustain their          focused SMEs and industrial
global of all languages for            of British SMEs than their           momentum if they find it             giants compete for a decreasing
business, this somehow means           continental cousins. He also         increasingly difficult to recruit    number of graduates from its
that selling in English, even if it    concludes that language is a         the German-speaking staff they       own universities.
is not the native language of the      barrier to trade, equivalent to a    will need to really penetrate the
customer, is somehow ok – you          tax, and that Britain’s language     market? Reports of frighteningly     TAKING ACTION
can ‘get by’. Is ‘getting by’ rather   investment is so low that it         low numbers of entrants and          I would encourage every
than excelling the goal we set         imposes a greater ‘tax’ on British   even lower numbers of graduates      exporting company I meet to add
ourselves? Will it be sufficient to    trade (of up to seven per cent)      each year from Business and          the line ‘foreign language skills
pull us out of the current crisis?     than the average for the rest of     German courses in our third-level    desirable’ to every job advert
There is an increasing body of         the world.                           institutions does not allay this     they place, both to increase
studies showing that successful              Studies from other native      concern.                             awareness of the importance of
exporters know better. The             English-speaking countries                 Some secondary schools         this skill and to start enhancing
British Chamber of Commerce            on this topic draw similar           have dropped German from the         the in-house capabilities which
reported in 2004 that amongst          conclusions. As we in Ireland are    curriculum, and Irish parents        give them meaningful advantage
their SMEs the export sales of         once again firmly convinced that     appear to be under the illusion      over mono-lingual competitors.
‘opportunists’ (the segment that       exporting is the most sustainable    that all of Europe’s 100m native     It’s up to us to take our future in
least values language skills)          form of growth, it is worrying       German-speakers speak English.       our own hands and ensure there
is declining by an average of          that the voices highlighting the     Yet Eurostat tells us that only      are enough graduates leaving
£50,000 a year per exporter            importance of increasing our         21 per cent of German and 23         our schools and colleges with
while exports from ‘enablers’          foreign language skills – a key      per cent of Austrian 25-64 year      a high standard of German and
(the segment placing the               skillset for an exporting nation     olds feel they speak English         other languages to satisfy the
highest value on language skills)      – are barely registering on the      proficiently i.e. the age group      requirements of the exporting
are increasing by an average           national consciousness, are          that makes the purchasing and        indigenous and multinational
£290,000 a year per exporter.          getting scant media coverage and     business decisions in any German     base of companies in Ireland.
      James Foreman-Peck,              are definitely not making it on to   company are not necessarily
an economist from the Cardiff          Frontline!                           comfortable or even capable of       Deirdre McPartlin is manager
Business School, has studied                                                communicating in English.            of Germany, Switzerland and
this issue extensively. In a report    SPRECHEN SIE DEUTSCH?                      To complete the picture, a     Austria based in Enterprise
from 2007, he notes British SMEs’      Several conversations and events     recruiter contact in Germany tells   Ireland’s Düsseldorf office.
lower investment in language           in recent months compelled           of a severe shortage of engineers    Her email address is deirdre.
skills (compared with peers            me to write this article: the        and good salespeople. If a           mcpartlin@enterprise-
in continental Europe) is not          low numbers of fluent German         German SME finds recruitment
                                                                                                                  dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET

      aIM It on

        Ireland’s golden
        chance to wIn
        busIness In brazIl
                                                                                                              COVER STORY

There’s much more to Brazil than the Olympics and
the World Cup, with the country undergoing massive
infrastructural development at all levels to support its
current growth. Cian Molloy hears why Brazil, recently
visited by an Enterprise Ireland-led trade mission, is an
economic powerhouse that Irish exporters can’t ignore.

            ith a population of 200 million people, Brazil is the world’s 10th largest    “Because overseas
            economy and one that is quickly reverting to boom mode on the back
            of the astonishing wealth of resources that it supplies to the world’s
                                                                                          companies are
            commodity market.                                                             only waking up to
At present, it’s the world’s eighth largest supplier of oil, but new offshore             the opportunities
discoveries could see its oil supply levels overtake those of the Middle East.            here, Irish
Moreover, while the effects of the financial crisis continue to threaten Ireland,
Brazilian GdP is increasing at a rate of eight per cent, with government spending         companies will
on infrastructure up 18 per cent per annum after the country’s economy suffered           find that it’s not
only six months of recession.                                                             saturated with
    Brazil is the world’s third largest steel producer, has the world’s third largest
aircraft industry and third largest computer market; it has the biggest aerospace
industry in the southern hemisphere, launching satellites regularly into space;           competitors as you
it has the world’s fifth largest mobile phone market and Latin America’s biggest          might find in India
fixed-line market; it has the world’s fourth largest TV network and is the world’s        or China.”
seventh-largest car manufacturer. In short: you would be nuts to ignore Brazil.
    Enterprise Ireland Latin America manager Colin McCullagh, who is based in
Sao Paulo, says: “In other countries, EI would be focusing on particular industries
where it thinks Irish exporters would have especially good opportunities, but in
Brazil there is a great diversity of opportunities. Some early Irish adopters, like
Kerry Group and dawn Meats, are doing very well in the agri-foods sector, but
there are good opportunities in supplying and servicing the construction industry,
in IT and mobile phones, in manufacturing, in transport, in financial services and in
supporting the oil industry.”
    There is a lot of infrastructure being built because Brazil has not invested
enough in this area in the past. This need is being further fuelled by the fact that
Brazil hosts the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016, which will create
opportunities for the Irish construction industry, says McCullagh. “The economy
is growing at such a pace that they say it will be the world’s fifth largest market
in ten years time. That economic growth is putting further demand pressure
on the infrastructure supply. Because overseas companies are only waking up
to the opportunities here, Irish companies will find that it’s not saturated with
international competitors as you might find in India or China,” he adds.
    “That said, there are downsides: there is a lot of bureaucracy and the taxation
system is complex and outdated with separate state and federal taxes that vary
from region to region. You need to put a lot of time into building relationships before
you will get orders, you won’t come in and start filling your order book within three
months. If you are doing business in Brazil, you have to be strategic in your thinking,
but while it is a difficult market, it is a market that provides good rewards.”
                                                                                          dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


            ublin-based Openet Telecom, a supplier
            of subscriber optimisation software to
            the telecoms industry, started looking for
                                                                                   oil industry
      business in Brazil in 2006 and signed its first two
      customers there in 2008, says CEO niall norton,

      who says two additional Brazilian customers                                          ver the next few years, Brazil is likely to
      were signed up in 2010. The company employs                                          spend more money on oil exploration than
      600 people in total, 500 in Europe and America                                       any other country following the discovery
      with the remaining 100 spread over offices in                                of massive reserves in the Pre-Salt region 170
      Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and Sao Paulo. “We                                    miles off the coast of Brazil. Located in very deep
      expect business in Brazil to ramp up in 2010. We                             water, deep below the seabed, exploiting these
      currently employ 35 people in Brazil and expect                              reserves pose a major technological challenge
      that number to double in 2011,” he says.                                     to the oil industry, but they potentially provide a
           “When we first started looking at South           “Brazil has the       major opportunity to oil industry suppliers like
      America, we went to Enterprise Ireland for
      advice on where would be best in terms of
                                                             potential to be       Suretank, a manufacturer of specialist storage
                                                                                   devices based in dunleer, Co Louth.
      domestic market, a good base for neighbouring          very big for us,             “We started looking at the Brazilian market
      markets, where there were low levels of
      corruption and where would be physically safe
                                                             but it depends on     two years ago and I have been out there six
                                                                                   or seven times since then,” says Suretank Md
      – they gave us a lot of information on a lot of        how successful        Patrick Joy. “Thanks to Enterprise Ireland, we
      countries and we made up our mind very quickly
      to concentrate on Brazil. Ultimately, we are
                                                             we are on getting     have been able to win one contract supplying
                                                                                   equipment tanks and containers for a drilling
      aiming to have 20 per cent of our global turnover      established           project. Enterprise Ireland introduced us to
      from Central and Latin America; currently our
      overall turnover is €75m, with our Brazil office
                                                             there. It’s a very    IWES do Brazil, whose parent company is in
                                                                                   Trinidad and who are supplying our offshore
      accounting for €5m, around seven per cent.             expensive business    containers for a drilling project run by Petrobras,
      We’ve put a lot of hard work into setting up in Sao
      Paulo, but it is paying off.”
                                                             setting up, so it’s   the Brazilian state-owned oil company. Petrobras
                                                                                   are happy with the equipment and are extending
           doing business in Brazil is more like doing       been great to get     the contract. Hoping to build on that, we have
      business in Ireland than in the UK, norton
      believes. “Culturally, they are very similar to the
                                                             Enterprise Ireland    appointed a new market development executive
                                                                                   in Brazil on a six-month contract and we are now
      Irish in terms of attitude and personality. There      support.”             looking to establish our own company in Brazil
      is an emphasis on partnership, which I think is                              possibly manufacturing our product out there.”
      good and is to our advantage. The main downside                                     Joy says Suretank has a turnover of
      is the bureaucracy – it’s like setting up a business                         US$50m and its business is worldwide. Brazil
      in France! If you are looking at doing business                              has the potential to be at least as valuable as
      across the country, you have to realise that there                           nigeria and Angola to the company but doing
      are significant differences between the various                              business in Brazil is difficult, he adds. “There is no
      regions – people underestimate that.”                                        double taxation agreement with Ireland, but the
                                                                                   government is working on that. Meanwhile, the
      “Culturally, they are very                                                   tax system there is complicated. There are taxes
                                                                                   upon taxes, which vary from region to region, and
      similar to the Irish in terms                                                taxes within one region will vary depending on
      of attitude and personality.                                                 what other region you are selling into and what
                                                                                   it is that you are selling. Brazil has the potential
      There is an emphasis on                                                      to be very big for us, but it depends on how
      partnership, which is to our                                                 successful we are on getting established there.
                                                                                   It’s a very expensive business setting up, so it’s
      advantage.”                                                                  been great to get Enterprise Ireland support.”
                                                                                            COVER STORY

                                                     first Brazilian customer, Codeme, started making
                                                     enquiries after they saw Combilifts in operation
                                                     in Chicago. It shows that the more international
                                                     you are, the easier it is to break into new markets
                                                     but that said, Codeme wouldn’t sign a contract
                                                     until we could give them full assurance about
                                                     local servicing and parts supply. Any company
                                                     who buys equipment like a forklift needs to know
                                                     that there is local servicing support, because the
                                                     longer the truck is out of action the longer they
                                                     are losing money. Once we had Codeme on board,
                                                     finding additional customers was a lot easier, but
                                                     before we went into the Brazilian market, I went
                                                     over to see if there were real opportunities there.
                                                           One of the biggest hurdles to overcome
                                                     for Irish firms is taxation, McVicar says. “Brazil
                                                     aims to become a fully self-sufficient country
                                                     and they are using their taxes to protect their
                                                     local industry, so there is a 14 per cent tariff
                                                     on the import of forklifts. Make sure you know
                                                     what the tariffs are for your product before
                                                     you start agreeing to supply. Interest rates are
                                                     also very high, businesses are typically being
                                                     charged 10 per cent to borrow so they are only
The                                                  making investment in plant that they really need

                                                     – if you are supplying something that is only
                                                     desirable, rather than a necessity, you may have

manufacturer                                         difficulty making sales. But there really are big
                                                     opportunities – they have more agricultural land

                                                     than the whole of the US, so Irish companies
         hen forklift manufacturer Combilift first   involved in agricultural equipment, IT and
         started investigating South American        services must have an opportunity there.”
         markets in July 2008, managing director
Martin McVicar travelled to Argentina, Colombia
and Brazil. “Since then, I have been back three
                                                     “They have more
times and each time I have only been to Brazil       agricultural land
because that is where the greatest opportunities
are,” he says. “Last year, we had a turnover of
                                                     than the whole of
€1.5m in Brazil; this year, we expect a total        the US, so Irish
turnover of €80m and that Brazil will account for
1.5 per cent of that and we expect that to grow to
                                                     companies involved
at least 5 per cent of our business in two years’    in agricultural
     A world leader in the long-load handling
                                                     equipment, IT and
market, Combilift manufactured the world’s first     services must have
engine-powered all-wheel-drive multidirectional
forklift. Its key clients are in construction
                                                     an opportunity
industry supply, manufacturing and the oil           there.”
industry, where clients need specialist equipment
to handle long loads such as tubular steel, piping
or timber.
     McVicar says the company was lucky when
breaking into the Brazilian market. He says:
“Our Brazilian distributor found us, rather than
us finding them, when he saw our product at a
trade show in Germany in July 2008, and our
                                                                        dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


                                                    B                                             The
                                                           razil’s growing prosperity took Web
                                                           Reservations International – the
                                                           world leader in online bookings for
                                                     hostels, B+Bs and guesthouses – slightly     financial
                                                     by surprise, admits CEO Feargal Mooney.
                                                     The company has more than 25,000
                                                     properties in 180 countries registered
                                                     with us. A couple of years ago, it noticed

                                                     that South America and Asia were                    razil’s complicated tax structure has been a
                                                     growing as destinations for the company,            bit of a Godsend for, an Irish
                                                     driven by Europeans and Americans, so               company that provides global tax return
                                                     it opened an office in Shanghai with five    and VAT recovery services to corporations and
                                                     people to sign up new contracts with         wealthy individuals. The company has been
                                                     hotels and guesthouses in Asia. “That        building relationships in Brazil since 2000 and
                                                     has done reasonably well for us. We          the country now accounts for 10 per cent of
                                                     wanted to do something similar in South      its turnover. “You need to drink plenty of cups
                                                     America and had a Spanish-speaking           of coffee with clients before you start doing

                                                     staff member in dublin who agreed to go      business,” says CEO Terry Clune. “Typically, it
                                                     and work in Buenos Aires in Argentina,       takes us a month to two months of building a
        ecommerce                                    mainly because of the language. But in
                                                     the last 12-18 months, we noticed that
                                                                                                  relationship before securing a corporate deal.
                                                                                                  You chat about family and have talks about talks
        company                                      our traffic from Brazil and other South
                                                     American countries was growing very
                                                                                                  before you do a deal – you need to have the
                                                                                                  banter. But once you have a relationship with a
                                                     rapidly – double and triple digit growth,    client, providing you don’t mess up, you keep that
                                           admittedly from a very low base,” says Mooney.         relationship. We haven’t lost one client in Brazil,
                                                Brazil is now WRI’s eighth largest nationality
      “Although Brazil                     of users, as a result of the growing economic
                                                                                                  whereas elsewhere in the world we have lost
                                                                                                  clients on price.”
      is the only                          prosperity there and its sheer population size.              Clune describes Brazil as “definitely a
                                           “They were using our Portuguese website to book
      Portuguese-                          accommodation in Brazil and other countries in
                                                                                                  second-world country that is becoming a first-
                                                                                                  world country fast. Like Russia, China and India,
      speaking country                     South America and around the world! We’re now          it doesn’t have a tradition of providing good
                                           going to have a dedicated Brazilian Portuguese
      in South America,                    language website online by the end of november
                                                                                                  customer service, so that creates opportunities
                                                                                                  for us. Our international payments business is
      its population                       and are opening in office in Sao Paulo where, by       doing very well there, because our systems are
                                           Christmas, there will be five people focused on
      is greater than                      the supply side, with another four or five recruited
                                                                                                  dramatically faster, cheaper and easier than
                                                                                                  the facilities provided by Brazilian banks. Over
      all the Spanish-                     next year to work on marketing to users.” At the       the last year there, currency has hardened, so
                                           moment, WRI is based in Enterprise Ireland’s
      speaking countries                   offices and is taking advice on the best corporate
                                                                                                  business there is now more valuable than it has
      combined, and it’s                   structure to work most effectively in the country            To borrow a culinary metaphor, Brazil is a
                                           due to the “very complicated” bureaucracy,
      as easy to service                   Mooney adds.
                                                                                                  hard nut to crack, but it is also one that can prove
                                                                                                  very rewarding.
      the Spanish-                              “Although Brazil is the only Portuguese-
                                           speaking country in South America, its population
      speaking countries                   is greater than all the Spanish-speaking countries
      from Brazil as it is                 combined, and it’s as easy to service the Spanish-
                                           speaking countries from Brazil as it is anywhere
      anywhere else.”                      else. One of our main revenue streams is working
                                           with affiliates, such as Ryanair and LonelyPlanet.
                                           com, who use us for booking accommodation.
                                           We’ve signed up with the Latin American travel
                                           sites and, which is a
                                           significant achievement for us. They are valuable
                                           deals in their own right, but they also establish
                                           us as a competent player in the local market and
                                           should help us to win further deals.”
                                                                                                                 BUSINESS PERFORMANCE


 “Finance at its                                                                                          Noted business
                                                                                                          thinker Dr Robert
 heart is really                                                                                          Kaplan recently
 simple – sell more                                                                                       visited Dublin to
 or spend less.                                                                                           give a presentation
 Everything else is                                                                                       on the timely
 just background                                                                                          theme of managing
 music.”                                                                                                  costs. Gordon
                                                                                                          Smith went along
                                                                                                          to learn some

C                                                                                                         easy
        uts of one kind or another look like being        As such he is well placed to give lessons on
        on the menu for some time to come in         how companies can perform better now that
        Ireland, but like so many things in life     the downturn has exposed the inefficiencies
        there’s a right way and a wrong way to       in many organisations that growth during the
go about making them. That’s why it’s always         good times had concealed. Kaplan’s message

useful when there’s a doctor around to show          was as simple as ABC: understanding cost and
people how to wield the scalpel.                     profitability as a way to drive performance.
     In this case, the ‘surgeon’ is Dr Robert S
Kaplan, Baker Foundation Professor with the          MAKING THE CUT Speaking before Kaplan’s
Harvard Business School, who visited Dublin          presentation, KBC Bank’s chief economist
in October to speak before an audience of 150        Austin Hughes set the scene by raising two

senior executives.                                   major risks to businesses in the current climate:
     Widely considered as a major contributor        paralysis in the face of uncertainty and death
to the art and science of business strategy,         spiral of continual cutting. “When making cuts,
Kaplan created Activity-Based Costing, a             it’s better to use a scalpel than an axe. You need
methodology for companies to calculate the           to know your anatomy and don’t just cut off an
true cost of providing products and services, so     arm,” said Hughes.
they can root out those lines of business that are         Kaplan took up the theme in his two-hour
unprofitable or incorrectly priced. He is also the   talk. “Before we do something drastic in a panic
inventor of the ‘balanced scorecard’, the most       and apply across-the-board spending cuts, we
widely adopted management tool that links a          have this notion of fairness, that everybody has
company’s actions to its strategic goals.            to take cuts of, say, 15 per cent. This is a very
                                                                                                          dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


                                           “Where we have products that are earning
                                           good margins and customers that are
                                           profitable, we don’t want to do any cutting
                                           that affects the profitability of those
                                           products or those customers – otherwise
                                           it’s going to get worse.”

                                           bad idea,” he said. “Let’s find out where we’re     level of detail about how people in a business
                                           not in trouble, where we have products that are     spend their time on a particular activity. So,
                                           earning good margins and customers that are         the ‘fixed’ costs end up being nothing of the
                                           profitable, and we don’t want to do any cutting     kind. Hours in the working day taken up by
                                           that affects the profitability of those products    marketing and technical support, service, travel
                                           or those customers – otherwise it’s going to get    to customers, handling customer orders and
                                           worse,” he added.                                   shipping reveals the truer picture.
                                                If a company is producing a product in low          Seen through the prism of ABC, customer
                                           volume and no important customer is using it,       A has narrow product lines and standard
                                           and where there is no opportunity to turn this      shipping arrangements, whereas customer B
                                           around, that is where a disproportionately high     asks for variety, special customisation, tailored
                                           level of cuts must be applied, said Kaplan. He      packaging, overnight delivery and features that
                                           stressed the importance of profitability analysis   ramp up the real price, Kaplan outlined. “You
                                           and understanding its role to drive better          do it because they’re a big, important customer.
                                           business performance and to root out where          But until you trace the cost of doing all those
                                           the poorly performing parts of the business are,    special things, you don’t realise this can add up
                                           leaving the others intact.                          to a lot and not just be a profitable customer but
                                                Whereas traditional cost-accounting            barely breaking even.”
                                           divides costs into fixed and variable, Kaplan            Actual customer profitability after ABC
                                           contended that there are very few fixed costs in    analysis is radically different, and the ideal
                                           an organisation. Costs don’t just rise because      customer emerges as one that combines high
                                           a company is producing the same thing at a          profit with a low cost of sale. “It’s important
                                           higher volume. It could be because variety and      when you know you have a customer like this,
                                           complexity have been introduced, or maybe the       because there is nothing you should not do
                                           company is competing in more regions. “Your         for that customer,” said Kaplan. “We have to
                                           costs go up as you try to do more things,” said     change to being customer-focused from being
                                           Kaplan.                                             customer-obsessed.”
                                                When measured by the so-called fixed                The 20 per cent of your most costly
                                           costs of sales, distribution, marketing and         customers – the most profitable of your
                                           administration, two roughly similar customers,      customers can in reality generate 180 per cent
                                           possibly in the same sector, might appear to be     of the profits, Kaplan argued. Unprofitable
                                           equally profitable. With activity-based costing,    products or customers can cost a business
                                           in reality customer A has hidden profits and        between 40 and 80 per cent of your profits.
                                           customer B has hidden costs.                        While Kaplan conceded it’s possible a customer
                                                                                               may be unprofitable because it is a new
                                           TIME IS MONEY To hear Kaplan explain it,            account so there is the cost of acquiring that
                                           activity-based costing is as easy as the acronym    customer to be considered, “but if you have that
                                           makes it sound. ABC is, in essence, a more          customer for five years or more, then you have
                                           rigorous approach that drills down to a finer       a problem.”
                                                                                                                  BUSINESS PERFORMANCE

                                                                                                          What causes a customer to
                                                                                                          be unprofitable? ABC analysis
                                                                                                          - Extensive discounting and
                                                                                                          - Order size discount
                                                                                                          - Invoice price is less than the
                                                                                                          - Extra discounting if the
                                                                                                            customer meets the payment
                                                                                                          - Co-op marketing or
                                                                                                            advertising allowance
                                                                                                          - Annual volume bonus
                                                                                                          - Freight allowance.

                                                                                                          Highly profitable customers,
                                                                                                          on the other hand, tend to
                                                                                                          show these traits:
                                                                                                          - no discounting or allowances
                                                                                                          - Standard product orders
                                                                                                          - High order quantities
                                                                                                          - Predictable order arrivals
                                                                                                          - Standard delivery
                                                                                                          - no changes in delivery
                                                                                                          - Electronic order processing
                                                                                                          - Little or no pre- or post-sales
                                                                                                          - Few inventory support
                                                                                                          - Pay on time.

CUSTOMER FOCUS Businesses need to                   to play down the effort involved in putting an
identify customers that use their buying power      ABC system into place within a business. “It is
to ask for a lower price or lots of customised      work, this doesn’t come for free and the heavy
service or features. Armed with better              lifting comes at the front end,” he warned.
information, the business can choose not to do            Once companies understand profitability
business with that customer because the costs       at the individual customer level, they can target
are too high, or renegotiate for more favourable    actions to improve by introducing process
terms. “Among the things you discover is that       improvements that lower the cost of serving
you were doing foolish things, but it’s because     customer demands – that could include online
you didn’t have the data,” said Kaplan. “At         ordering, or web-based self service, for example.
times like these, we realise the gaps in our              Kaplan suggested that companies should
management systems.”                                hold a complete strategic review every three to
     Kaplan also modestly admitted to the           four months, and devote monthly meetings to
failings in earlier versions of the model when it   one particular area and spend an hour on that in
was first introduced in the late Eighties. Then,    drill-down detail. The key is to go looking for the
the time and effort involved in interviewing        information that will provide real insight, he
people made ABC very costly to implement, but       added. “Don’t fall into the accountant’s trap – if
now he said much of the information needed          I can’t measure what I want, I’ll want what I can
to make it work is available in companies’ ERP      measure. It’s better to have a soft measure than
systems.                                            no measure... Finance at its heart is really simple
     Befitting an academic rather than a smooth     – sell more or spend less. Everything else is just
salesman pitching a product, Kaplan didn’t look     background music.”
                                                                                                           dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


                                           friends in
                                           high PlaCes
                                           Partnership initiatives are putting the natural cross-
                                           pollination that happened between multinationals
                                           and indigenous firms on a more formal footing. Leslie
                                           Faughnan hears how these schemes are opening doors
                                           for Irish technology firms in new markets.



         ne of the most important side effects of    technology and – equally important – with a
         the growing presence of multinationals      support network and access to information and
         and their investment in Ireland in the      experience. From our point of view in Microsoft,
         past few decades has been a high degree     there is some self-interest, because of course we
of stimulus and cross-fertilisation to the benefit   believe in our own contribution to the growth
of local industry and individual entrepreneurs.      of ICT and the software ecosystem we lead.”
Suppliers have learned to compete at
international standards, world class in fact,        MENTORING ROLE In Ireland, Rellis adds,
while over time a significant number of Irish        Microsoft is particularly close to the business
executives in those multinationals have based        community so it is not surprising that staff
new ventures on their experience and contacts.       members have been drawn into training, advice
     Local operations of global names in the         and mentoring. That work is part-time, with the
ICT sector from Apple to Xilinx have always          support of Microsoft. “Actually what happened
been open to helping and advising local talent,      was that we lit the touch paper and, in a
while in more recent years that involvement          typical Irish way, the network has grown and
has become a little bit more formal. For example     developed, participants are learning from our
IBM and Microsoft, two of our largest direct         resources and from each other.”
investors, have specific sponsorship schemes              IBM Ireland supports and partners with
and executives focused on helping indigenous         small technology businesses in a number
small business to grow.                              of ways, notably with initiatives from its
     The Microsoft BizSpark programme is a           Innovation Centre and Irish-based centres of
global initiative aimed at helping indigenous        excellence in specific research areas like its
technology start-up businesses with software         Smarter Cities and Smart Bay programmes.
and an ecosystem for support, training and           Last year, it held a four-day IBM Smart Camp
networking. “We have signed up over 400              in Ireland, an initiative now extended to nine
companies in Ireland, which is by some way           other countries. The winner in 2009 as the
the highest national level of participation,”        most promising young tech company was
says Paul Rellis, managing director of Microsoft     TreeMetrics from Cork and, as IBM Innovation
Ireland. “But is not the numbers so much as the      Centre head Noel Crawford points out, “There
quality and the sheer range of the ideas that is     are now four participant businesses which have
important – and impressive.”                         gone to market with IBM somewhere in the
     In today’s world, every company is a            world.”
‘Smart Economy’ business, he believes, from               These initiatives are both local and
fashion retailing to financial services. “The        global, he explains. “We listen for ideas, we
idea behind BizSpark is to help start-ups with       are on the look-out for partners to fill out our

                                  “Actually what happened was that
                                  we lit the touch paper and, in a typical
                                  Irish way, the network has grown and
                                  developed, participants are learning
                                  from our resources and from each

                                                                                                         dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


                                           solutions portfolio and technology base and it              That key question of gaining credibility
                                           all comes together in a growing ecosystem of          is happily endorsed by Conor O’Riordan,
                                           innovation.” There are a growing number of            managing director of “We
                                           areas in which start-ups and smaller companies        offer a paperless electronic solution for trading
                                           find common ground with IBM, he adds. “Most           with, within and out of the EU. It provides
                                           of the companies we partner with are involved         compliance with customs and excise advance
                                           in Open Source software, for example. Sensor          data requirements for both buyers and sellers.
                                           technology is another specific sector with            That is certainly of interest to the 155,000-plus
                                           huge growth potential and a lot of excellent          US exporters to Europe. With an introduction
                                           development work going on here.”                      and endorsement from Microsoft, we found
                                                One of the leading companies involved with       ourselves last year advising the US Department
                                           sensor technology is Limerick-based Episensor,        of Commerce on trading with the EU and I was
                                           set up in 2007 to provide solutions in wireless       even interviewed on CNBC. That is the power
                                           metering for energy management and other              of a friendly helping hand from a giant like
                                           remote monitoring systems. “We have had               Microsoft.”
                                           excellent relations with IBM people for some                 TradeFacilitate has been a BizSpark
                                           years and have a lot of research areas and partners   participant since the beginning and has become
                                           in common, like the National Centre for Sensor        a Microsoft Global ISV partner with its solution
                                           Research in DCU or the Marine Institute and the       hosted on the Azure cloud platform. “Over and
                                           Smart Bay programme in Galway,” says Gary             above that, we have been able through Microsoft
                                           Carroll, chairman of Episensor.                       Ireland to establish valuable relationships with
                                                                                                 other senior corporate executives in EMEA and
                                           SEAL OF APPROVAL “There is no question                head office in Redmond.”
                                           that when you are endorsed and introduced by                Another enthusiastic BizSpark participant
                                           IBM, it opens doors everywhere. We are active         and Cork-based software company using the
                                           now in 16 export markets, for example trying          Microsoft Azure cloud platform is HR Locker.
                                           to set up a deal with T-Mobile in Hungary.            This is an online, easy-to-use software solution
                                           The fact that we are an ‘approved vendor’ to          for small businesses globally that offers
                                           IBM – and in fact have signed a collaboration         enterprise-level functionality through a low-cost
                                           agreement with them – is really important             software-as-a-service model. It handles employee
                                           for our credibility in such markets. We know          details and annual leave, time sheets and other
                                           we have unique technology, but getting the            HR elements that are not nationally unique.
                                           opportunities to demonstrate that can be an                 It was launched at the beginning of this year
                                           issue, especially dealing with large public           with some clients already using the beta version.
                                           bodies and international organisations.”              It now has 40 clients and growing, principally

                                                                              “There is no question that when you
                                                                              are endorsed and introduced by IBM it
                                                                              opens doors everywhere. We are active
                                                                              now in 16 export markets.”



in EMEA and Asia. It is particularly targeted     in the management of forestry. The basis is
at smaller businesses with multiple locations,    3D laser scanning of standing forests which
such as exporters with small offices throughout   enables back office planning of harvesting and
Europe. Its first non-Irish client was a UK games yield optimisation. “We have been presenting
developer with a subsidiary in Japan. HR Locker   and demonstrating to large forestry companies
is actively promoting itself in China, where,     worldwide, starting with Coillte which is also a
in this instance, a version modified for local    partner of ours,” explains Keane. “A key factor
employment practices is now offering a unique     is that almost all such enterprises are state
solution.                                         organisations, because about 70 per cent of
                                                  forestry worldwide is in government ownership.
HALO EFFECT “We benefit from the halo             So a small company from faraway Ireland needs
effect,” says founder and managing director       help to make an impact in places like Australia
John Dennehy, a successful entrepreneur           or South America. In Europe, the introductions
in a previous business as a computer games        by Coillte are a great help.”
developer. “Between Azure as our cloud                 As well as testing the technology, state
platform and BizSpark as a resource network,      companies tend to offer contracts only after due
Microsoft provides credibility. The people in     diligence checking. “We now have a double-
Microsoft Ireland have also been personally       barrelled credibility asset. Our own state
generous with their time and involvement.”        forestry company Coillte uses and sponsors
      One of the more notable recent partnerships our technology, and there is no question that
involves TreeMetrics, another Cork company,       those authorities also think ‘If IBM likes it, it
and IBM. “We met the IBM guys in September        must be good’, So we have just signed a contract
last, won the SmartCamp competition in            with Uruguay, expect to do a deal shortly with
October and by March, we were presenting in       an Australian company and are at an advanced
the USA with the full backing of IBM,” recalls    stage in talking to the US Forestry Commission.”
founder and CEO Enda Keane. “We have been              IBM gave TreeMetrics some valuable
working with the IBM Innovation Centre here,      assistance on the technology side, Keane
which not only has a good system in place to      says, making some important elements more
assist development but really enthusiastic and    robust. “But the huge contribution was in
helpful people. We also fit in well with IBM’s    advising us on our go-to-market strategy and in
vision of the ‘Smarter Planet,’ using technology  bringing us to Silicon Valley and Boston to meet
to enhance the value of sustainable forestry in   venture capital people and senior officials in
our case.”                                        government agencies. The value of that level of
      TreeMetrics has been working since 2005 on arm-around-the-shoulder encouragement and
its software system to optimise value recovery    support is beyond measurement.”

                                  “The value of that level of arm-around-
                                  the-shoulder encouragement and
                                  support is beyond measurement.”

                                                                                                      dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET

                                           Hard-won experience in the indigenous pharmacy sector
                                           and word-of-mouth has given Helix Health the platform to
                                           take a 15 per cent share of the UK cancer treatment sector.
                                           Now it has ambitious targets further afield, as CEO Howard
                                           Beggs tells Jim Aughney.

                                           for suCCess

                                                                                                              THE EXPORTER: HELIX HEALTH


         oward Beggs, the former PC salesman
         with Smurfit Computing and now CEO
                                                           “Once we had established that base we
                                                      were able to talk to global multinationals about
                                                                                                           “We found the UK
         of Helix Health employing over 100           Clinichemo as an add-on to their hospital IT         very manageable
         people, has experienced at first hand
the right way and the wrong way of tackling
                                                      systems,” Beggs explains. “The product being
                                                      exceptional was a great help, as doctors and
                                                                                                           from Ireland for
export markets. Over eight years ago, Beggs took      professors talk to each other and we were able       sales. You could
the bold decision to expand the growing Helix
Health IT services businesses into the UK. It was,
                                                      to expand through references. After that it
                                                      was burning up the shoe leather to make the
                                                                                                           get a very quick
he argues, a logical step building on the skills      connections,” Beggs recalls. “It was a hard sell     sales return from
honed at home and taking a new outlook.
     “Ireland is a very small market for
                                                      but we now have a market share of 15 per cent of
                                                      the UK cancer treatment sector.”
                                                                                                           your efforts.”
healthcare IT but it is also a very tough space.           The Helix outlook was to go into the UK
                                                                                                           HOWARD BEGGS, CEO
The UK was easy to reach from our Dublin              healthcare sector with a specialised product that    HELIx HEALTH
HQ. In fact, it was easier to get to Bradford for a   had proved to be successful in Ireland. Helix owed
meeting than it was to get to Macroom,” Beggs         its origins (then as Medicom) to being asked by
explains.                                             consultants to write special programs which were
     Not having the overheads of an office            not available in the IT market. “We could have
premises in the UK meant that Helix could             given our software away to 20 pharmacies and
commit time and effort into making an entrée          taken it from there but the niche route was the
into the UK. “We didn’t have to make a huge           best way to gain market credibility,” Beggs says.
investment to see how we could succeed in the         Even though Helix was a smaller fish in the much
UK,” Beggs recalls.                                   bigger pond of the UK, the news of its IT products
     There is a high level of collaboration           spread like viral marketing, Beggs says. But like
between physicians in Ireland and the UK and          a journalist with stories, he points out that you
they meet regularly at conferences and events.        are only as good as your last successful product.
“We had developed a successful chemotherapy
dispensing tracking system for centres of          A LEG-UP FROM BOOTS “Our next big
excellence here in Ireland. So we entered the      success story was Boots in the UK which wanted
UK with a high-end niche IT product costing        an IT system for their 1,500 stores. That came
between €25,000 and €100,000 depending on          out of the relationship we had with Boots in
the size of the cancer treatment centre. What’s    Ireland. We tendered for a development contract
clever is that this IT product (Clinichemo)        to build a system with the IT division of Alliance
allows oncologists to administer their own         Boots that had over one hundred people and
complex ‘cocktail’ of potentially life-saving      won it when our whole company employed 50
treatments where a single milligram can make a     people. The Boots contract ran from 2003 to 2005
difference,” Beggs explains.                       and was worth “significant millions” to Helix,
                                                   which set up a temporary office during the
USING CONNECTIONS Helix used the                   testing phase close to Alliance Boots’ IT division.
connections between its established customer             Alliance Boots eventually bought out all
base in Ireland to get to meet leading oncologists the IP rights to the system developed by Helix.
in the UK. After “burning a lot of shoe leather”,  The contract gave Helix the credibility to look at
Helix was soon established in 20 centres across    pharmacies located in hospitals across the UK
the UK, which formed a foothold and a market       as it had developed an IT system for Boots’ 15
presence in UK cancer treatment.                   million customers.
                                                                                                            dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


      “Ireland is a very                        “We found the UK very manageable from
                                           Ireland for sales. You could get a very quick
                                                                                               NEXT STEPS The next phase of export market
                                                                                               development at Helix came out of the Stanford
      small market for                     sales return from your efforts. Whereas in          Programme for entrepreneur CEOs. “After our
      healthcare IT but                    Ireland we have had big success from small
                                           products for individual GPs and pharmacies,
                                                                                               experience in the UK, we had scaled up and had
                                                                                               different teams – one for Nuffield, one for Irish
      it is also a very                    in the UK it was bigger chains and multiple         pharmacies etc. Stanford taught me to scale
      tough space. The                     clients. The biggest pharmacy chain in Ireland
                                           is 54 outlets compared with 1,600 in the UK,”
                                                                                               up that model for other markets but to de-risk
                                                                                               where possible. We had exited the US after two
      UK was easy to                       Beggs explains.                                     years during which we spent almost one million
      reach from our                            The next big success for Helix after
                                           Boots was to win a contract from the Nuffield
                                                                                               dollars for zero sales. We were trying to compete
                                                                                               with US multinationals with revenues of $18bn
      dublin HQ. In fact,                  Hospitals Group, which is a leading provider of     and $20bn,” Beggs recalls.
      it was easier to                     group executive health screening services for
                                                                                                    At Stanford, Beggs learned how to de-
                                                                                               risk a development strategy by partnering
      get to Bradford                           “We built the system from the ground up        with a local firm with existing relationships.
      for a meeting than                   whereby all results were captured by a central
                                           system. They are still a significant customer
                                                                                               “When we looked at where this might apply,
                                                                                               the Middle East jumped out at us. There are
      it was to get to                     and have spent millions on the system which         existing relationships between the Royal College
      Macroom.”                            extends to 78 locations including gyms that
                                           monitor proactive health management,” Beggs
                                                                                               of Surgeons of Ireland and the healthcare
                                                                                               professionals in Dubai and Kuwait, for
                                           explains.                                           example,” Beggs explains.
                                                “What that created is a lovely backbone of          One such supplier in the region provides
                                           business in multiple locations out of the UK and    IT products for X-ray departments in hospitals
                                           we have built up the support systems in Ireland     and other nearby departments. “We are now
                                           for those. Along the way, we have learned the       involved in two paid pilot schemes for 70 state-
                                           ropes of health assessment with Nuffield which      owned hospitals in Kuwait which involves their
                                           we can use in Ireland,” he explains.                doctors coming to Dublin to be trained,” says
                                                Helix has also successfully implemented        Beggs.
                                           IT systems for P2U (pharmacy to you), an                 The Middle East is potentially a lucrative
                                           online and pharmacy service aimed at those          market for Helix as Irish companies are well
                                           taking ‘sensitive’ drugs like Viagra or repeat      received there in a market where health
                                           medication. It has also installed IT systems for    spending is high. “As we enter 201,1 we will
                                           other direct pharmacy groups who use mail           be beginning a four-year business cycle where
                                           order and online booking to deliver sensitive       we drive more sales in the UK and Ireland
                                           drugs to their customers. Indeed, Beggs expects     and expand in the Middle East. We are using
                                           the direct pharmacy model to come to Ireland        Enterprise Ireland to establish more contacts
                                           as Irish pharmacies will follow the UK example      in Dubai.” During that phase, Beggs will visit
                                           soon.                                               Canada in January to meet a shortlist of partner
                                                The Helix strategy in the UK has been          companies there, and the company is also
                                           to enlist a number of external consultants to       looking even further afield: “New Zealand also
                                           meet what are called “localisation needs” but       has possibilities but the challenge there is that
                                           essentially the strategy has been to go it alone,   the State does not pay for expensive medical
                                           dip the toe in the water, leverage established      treatments as is the case in this part of the
                                           contacts and “burn the shoe leather”.               world,” Beggs concludes.

Plastics specialist Mergon is showing how Irish
manufacturing firms can thrive internationally by adopting
innovation, and how expertise in one sector can open doors
in another. Niall Byrne reports.

Moulding a
groWth strategy

                                                             dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


                                                      s a successful Irish-headquartered           deeper relationships with customers,” he
                                                      manufacturing multinational                  explains.
                                                      employing 388 people, Mergon defies
                                                      the conventional wisdom that Irish           SECTOR SPREAD Mergon supplies high-
                                           companies can’t compete for manufacturing               quality moulded plastic products to original
                                           business. The plastics specialist was recently          equipment manufacturers (OEMs) throughout
                                           awarded a major healthcare contract by                  Europe and North America. It has three
                                           being able to reduce the labour cost of the             divisions: Mergon Automotive, Mergon
                                           manufacturing operation by 80 per cent                  Industrial and Mergon Healthcare. Its products
                                           compared to what was being achieved in North            include air ducts, air intake systems and
                                           America.                                                reservoir bottles and expansion tanks for the
                                                 Innovation has been to the core of the            automotive industry; sharps containers and
                                           company’s growth for nearly 30 years. Operating         specialist packaging for the healthcare sector;
                                           out of three manufacturing plants in the US,            and toner cartridges and power tool cases within
                                           Czech Republic and Ireland                                                the industrial division.
                                           – where it was established           “Getting up                                 Beirne identifies three
                                           in Castlepollard, County                                                  phases in Mergon’s evolution.
                                           Westmeath in 1981 – the              early means                          “We learned a lot from some
                                           company has seen plastic blow        being first there                    of the customers we had in the
                                           moulding move from a very                                                 very early stages. Xerox was
                                           labour-intensive industry to a       when there’s an                      one. The learning process in
                                           very capital-intensive one.          opportunity; it’s                    working with them in the early
                                                 Automation has played a                                             Eighties helped us develop
                                           key role in Mergon’s success         getting the early                    significantly in terms of what
                                           but the company has also             flight and meeting                   international OEMs looked like
                                           been innovative in other                                                  and what they wanted their
                                           areas, such as adopting lean         the person face-to                   suppliers to do for them.”
                                           manufacturing principles and         -face as opposed                            A second phase was
                                           targeting overseas expansion                                              when the concept of “Fortress
                                           from an early stage. Research        to calling; it’s                     Europe” was being advanced at
                                           and development (R&D) is             following up on                      European level in 1992. “It was
                                           another crucial part of the                                               a period when there was a lot of
                                           story. Pat Beirne, managing          opportunities                        inward investment in Europe
                                           director of the Group, describes     with urgency.”                       because there was a fear by
                                           it as R&D with a small r and                                              many Asian OEMs that if you
                                           a large D, emphasising the                                                didn’t have manufacturing in
                                                                                  PAT BEIRNE, MD
                                           customer-focused nature of the         MERGOn                             Europe you couldn’t access the
                                           company’s approach.                                                       market.” To capitalise on this,
                                                 He recounts a recent example of the               Mergon developed a technology partnership
                                           successful commercial application of Mergon’s           with a Japanese company which opened the
                                           R&D capabilities. “A long-standing customer             doors of many Japanese OEMs in the UK in
                                           was introducing a new packaging product                 particular.
                                           and came to us with a detailed design. We                    “We developed business with several
                                           completely redesigned the product, eliminating          Japanese customers and our association with
                                           several assembly steps and quite a number               a Japanese company was a big part of that. We
                                           of components. We’re saving them a million              had people from Mergon who went to Japan;
                                           dollars a year on that one product and it has           some of them spent several months there. That
                                           been adopted as the design of choice for future         helped us have a significant advantage when
                                           products.”                                              Japanese companies were identifying suppliers
                                                 It’s an example, says Beirne, of how to           in Europe.”
                                           apply innovative thinking in overseas markets                The third big phase was the
                                           and support it by having an R&D centre                  internationalisation of Mergon’s business; it set
                                           here in Ireland. “By applying innovation                up a plant in the US in 1998 in South Carolina
                                           and technology to what are really customer              and six years later, it founded an operation
                                           requirements or needs or desires, you create a          in Brno in the Czech Republic. “Those two
                                           lot of manufacturing opportunities and develop          developments in those two locations, while

driven by opportunity, also gave us significant       in recent years. The target is that it will be 30
reach that we didn’t have before. We became           per cent of sales in three years. The company is
much more global,” notes Beirne.                      currently investing over €2 million in a Class 8
      The only way for Mergon to be able to           Cleanroom and three high-speed blow moulding
maintain a manufacturing base in Ireland              machines. The automotive industry accounts for
was by keeping its costs down and remaining           40 per cent of sales, while industrial markets are
competitive. While it may seem paradoxical, the       around 43 per cent.
internationalisation of the business played a key
role in enabling Mergon to do this.                   EARLY INVOLVEMENT “When we can be
      “All our customers are global companies.        involved at an early stage with customers we
Having manufacturing operations in different          can take cost out and improve overall quality.
locations gives us flexibility in the supply chain.   There’s an example of a contract we were
It’s also given us a whole lot more reach than        awarded recently in the healthcare sector where
we would have in the past,” says Beirne. It has,      we were able to take 80 per cent of the labour
in fact, strengthened the Irish                                           cost out of the manufacturing
operation, he adds, with the                                              operation by comparison with
group as a whole now seen as a                                            what was already established
strategic supplier. For example,                                          in North America.” He
product development for the                                               cites automation and lean
entire group comes from the                                               techniques as making this
Irish operation.                                                          competitiveness possible.
                                                                               Mergon was recently
LEAN MANUFACTURING                                                        appointed as a direct supplier
Beirne notes that as plastic                                              to Toyota, capitalising on the
blow moulding has gone from                                               rebound that is beginning to
being a labour-intensive to                                               be noticed in the automotive
a capital-intensive industry,                                             sector since the decline of 2008.
the technology has changed                                                Getting close to customers is
dramatically. There is a heavy                                            critical to winning business,
emphasis on automation and                                                believes Beirne. Here the plants
robotics and sophisticated                                                in North America and the
manufacturing processes with                                              Czech Republic help, but in
higher outputs and better                                                 addition Beirne and his sales
yields. The past few years have                                           team have always adopted the
also seen the company embrace                                             simple strategy of “getting up
lean manufacturing principles.                                            early”.
     “The lean manufacturing                                                   “Getting up early means
and robotics expertise we’ve                                              being first there when there’s
developed and grown in the automotive market          an opportunity; it’s getting the early flight and
has applications in other sectors,” says Beirne.      meeting the person face-to-face as opposed to
One such sector is healthcare. A strategic review     calling; it’s following up on opportunities with
undertaken by the company four years ago              urgency,” he says.
identified this area as providing commercial               The traditional manufacturing techniques
opportunities. The recession has accelerated          that are more labour-intensive are clearly no
Beirne and his team’s focus on healthcare.            longer viable in the Irish context, Beirne adds.
     “What emerged from that strategic                “We can’t compete at that level. The Irish cost
review process was that a lot of our strengths,       base in the past 10 years has been expensive.
particularly global supply capability and cost        That’s driven our lean manufacturing and
optimisation, were closely aligned with the           automation initiatives.”
needs of the healthcare sector. We’ve had a                However, he is optimistic about the future
significant but small presence in the healthcare      of Irish manufacturing if innovation, lean
sector for a number of years.”                        manufacturing and robotics are applied. “We’ve
     Beirne describes today’s environment as          invested heavily in these areas. The world is a
an exciting time for Mergon. Currently, the           big place and there are lots of opportunities.
healthcare sector represents 17 per cent of the       Once you know your market, your customer and
company’s sales, having grown significantly           what you want to achieve, you can compete.”
                                                                                                              dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


           nnovation in technology drives innovation in          Many of the challenges are familiar and
           business, providing more efficient ways of      have not changed essentially, nor are they
           performing familiar tasks or enabling new       likely to, because of technological innovation.
           approaches to business and new routes to        “You need to have an anchor employee,” says
      market.                                              Kelly. “Somebody you can rely on to operate the
            One area in which technology can assist        business successfully in a particular location.
      businesses in both of these directions is the        And it is advisable to have an anchor client, an
      management of distant offices. Remote working        immediate source of revenue on which you can
      allows companies both to alleviate the burden of     build your business. Often, an existing client asks
      everyday commuting for existing local employees      us to have a direct presence in a new geography
      and to expand into new markets overseas while        so that we can support their expansion there.”
      retaining tight control of the satellite office.           Where technology has made a difference
            Modern communications and software             is in the method that TSL employs to establish
      applications allow remote offices to appear to be    new offices. “In the past,” says Kelly, “we have
      much closer to head office than they are. With       moved into a new country by setting up a
      technologies such as virtual private networks        subsidiary operation with all the duplication of
      (VPns), Voice over IP (VoIP) communications          effort and bureaucracy that entails. If things
      and the supposedly new phenomenon of cloud           don’t work out immediately and you have to
      computing, much of the headache and cost of          close that office, it can be very expensive.”
      establishing and managing a remote office in               More recently, TSL has established in new
      another area, such as a foreign country, can be      markets offices that are effectively branches
      removed.                                             of the company headquarters in Carlow. The
            An Irish company which knows a lot about       advantages in terms of set-up costs and
      the challenges of operating across international     speed of entry to market are obvious but
      markets is Carlow-based TSL, an agency which         what helps to make such a strategy possible
      assists technology-based companies with              is the sophistication of the computing and
      marketing campaigns across the world.                communications tools now available.
            Managing director Mike Kelly says that               “Our office in Warsaw is connected via
      TSL specialises in ensuring proper execution         VPn to our offices in dublin and Carlow,” Kelly
      of marketing campaigns aimed at a particular         says. “We have a single phone system, so
      geographical area by providing a vital ‘hand-        effectively all calls between these three offices
      holding’ link between the client company,            are internal calls.” And as befits a company
      usually a multinational technology company, and      that is a reseller for Microsoft cloud computing
      its local representatives in individual countries.   applications, TSL also makes widespread use
      These are usually independent local companies        of ‘the cloud’ and software that is delivered as
      who may have to represent several vendors in         a service.
      that country or region and often have a learning           Where once people spoke about ‘the
      curve to climb to become familiar with the           internet’ they now tend to speak of ‘the cloud’
      minutiae of individual marketing campaigns.          as that quasi-magical technological innovation
            “We make it as simple as possible for the      which changes all the rules. In reality, both refer
      partner to execute marketing campaigns,”             to the same phenomenon: a synergy between
      says Kelly. “We do things like ensure that the       the global telecommunications network and
      marketing messaging and collateral is up to          personal computing power which has come
      date and relevant for the market our client is       together over the past 20 years.
      addressing, and work very closely with local               In terms of software delivery, cloud
      representatives to help them generate leads and      computing essentially allows a computer
      follow up on sales opportunities.”                   user to access an application that is hosted
                                                           not on their own computer but on a server
      MANAGEMENT CHALLENGES naturally,                     accessible via the internet ‘cloud’. All one needs
      this means that TSL has to spread itself across      to run such an application is a web browser.
      several countries and it currently has nine          The advantage of this is that the headache of
      offices in locations across Europe, America          installation and support is taken away from the
      and Asia. As such, Kelly is intimately aware of      individual user in a remote office and handled
      the challenges involved in establishing foreign      instead by the software vendor centrally on
      operations on behalf of a small but expanding        the servers which are used to deliver the
      Irish ‘knowledge’ company.                           application to its users.

The old ways of managing by walking around are being
replaced by software which allows management in one
office to oversee teams in another location, or even another
country. David D’Arcy logs on to find out more.


FRANK HANNIGAN                                      MIKE KELLY
CHAIRmAN, GOSHIDO                                   mANAGING DIRECTOR, TSL

“We’re all going to be                              “You need to have an
working like this soon.                             anchor employee,
The days of a project                               somebody you can
being managed within a                              rely on to operate the
company are going.”                                 business successfully in
                                                    a particular location.”

                                                                     dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET

           Another advantage of cloud computing             like Agile software development and Lean
      is that users pay for software as they use it,        production.
      typically on a per-seat per-month basis, rather            “Lots of manufacturing companies have
      than pay large licensing costs up front and           been using Lean for some time,” says Hannigan.
      finding themselves locked in to an application        “We’re bringing it into the knowledge economy.”
      they may soon wish to be rid of.
           One of the pioneering companies in this          TASK MASTER Soon to hit the market will be
      delivery method was, and TSL           another product from a regional Irish company,
      uses that sales-automation software in all its        this time Rworks from Wexford. due to ship at
      offices. “It means that anyone in any office          the end of november, its software is specifically
      can see the same view of our activity with our        intended for managing remote workers, whether
      clients,” says Kelly. “As we represent some clients   they are telecommuters working from home or in
      across many countries, that is a very useful tool.”   branch offices far away from headquarters.
           When it comes to the specifics of managing            Again, RWorks is a cloud service which
      remote offices, there are inevitable challenges       allows workers and staff to create tasks and
      associated with visibility, monitoring, control and   then monitor the progress on those tasks.
      feedback that have to be managed. Fortunately,        According to managing director Tony Redmond,
      there are software tools available, some of           people using Rworks are prompted to select an
      them developed by Irish companies, which are          activity, which may be work-related or personal
      specifically designed to aid the communications,      and in the case of the former, the software
      management and control processes that are             automatically generates timesheets, shows the
      necessary when managing people across several         status of groups of tasks and shows people their
      locations.                                            productivity levels. It also allows managers
                                                            to provide feedback on tasks which can then
      PROJECT FOCUS Goshido, based in Limerick,             be reported on later as part of reviews and
      produces a cloud-based software product of the        appraisals.
      same name that allows users to monitor and                 RWorks can be used by companies
      run projects across diverse locations. Although       with teams dispersed across a large area or
      there are existing popular project-based software     internationally needing to get a clear picture of
      products available, notably Microsoft’s Project,      activities and tasks within the organisation, and is
      these, according to Goshido chairman Frank            also suitable for self-employed contractors and
      Hannigan, are typically used to plan the schedule     professionals wishing to show billable hours.
      of projects at the outset. Where Goshido differs,          Redmond says the goals of Rworks
      he says, is that it allows a team to manage a         are to remove manual data entry from task
      project through execution.                            management, and by implication, project
           In that sense, what Goshido is more              management and to focus specifically on the
                                                                                                                   TONY REDMOND
      typically replacing is the mish-mash of tools         needs of remote workers and those who manage           mANAGING DIRECTOR, RWORKS
      including e-mail, spreadsheets and ordinary text      them by providing mechanisms for feedback,
      documents through which people attempt some           productivity and communication.
      semblance of control over who’s doing what and             “These sorts of tools are going to become         “These sorts of
      when.                                                 more important as remote working increases,” he
           “E-mail and Excel just don’t cut it when         says. “Work is no longer somewhere you go; it’s        tools are going
      you’re managing projects across various sites,”       something you do.”                                     to become more
      says Hannigan. “You don’t get the visibility of            The project-based methodology which
      what’s going on and the flexibility to take action    underpins both these Irish products is typical of      important as
      at the right time.” The idea for Goshido came         the way people will work in knowledge industries       remote working
      when its founder Ger Hartnett found himself in a      in the future, according to Hannigan. “We’re
      previous job managing a project across four sites     all going to be working like this soon,” he says.      increases. Work
      in three continents, and discovering how difficult    “The days of a project being managed within a          is no longer
      it was to do so without a suitable software tool.     company are going.”
           Goshido’s software provides visibility on the         People are also beginning to realise the          somewhere you
      status of all the various elements of a project       importance of project management as a                  go; it’s something
      including deadlines, assignments to action and        discipline. As one of Goshido’s customers told
      points of interconnection where the result of one     Hannigan: “We need this tool because we thought        you do.”
      action affects the operation of another. It helps     we were a pharma company but we realised we
      companies to follow production methodologies          were really just project managers.”


Many export-focused firms have to place employees in
other countries to be close to customers, but that can
create challenges of communication, trust and motivation.
Leadership coach Colm Murphy outlines ways of overcoming
the obstacles involved in managing remote staff.

PeoPle                                                      dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


                                                   omeone once said that the rise of TV              The other important but obvious point
                                                   meant the end of childhood. Could the        about trust is that it needs to work both ways. So
                                                   same be said of the growth in virtual        while you as the boss are learning to trust your
                                                   technology and the relationship between      remote employee, they in turn must be building
                                           a boss and a report? As we put more and more         up their trust in you.
                                           faith in the technology to effectively connect us         So how do you build trust with someone
                                           to employees in other time zones, we must not        hundreds or thousands of miles away who you
                                           forget that any effective working relationship       realistically might see face-to-face once or twice
                                           needs to be based on mutual trust and that is one    a year at best?
                                           thing technology cannot do on its own.                    My experience, from being a remote
                                                The development and maintenance of trust        employee and a manager of a remote team as
                                           could not be more crucial. Without it, there will    well as coaching dozens of leaders working in
                                           be a communication breakdown and a spiral            remote environments, has helped me identify
                                           that can quickly turn your once-prized global        four key factors as summarised by the acronym
                                           employee relationship into a stressful process       C.A.N.S:
                                           of allegations, client impact, dismissal and local
                                           employment laws.                                     – C – Communication
                                                                                                – A – Alignment
      With remote                                                                               – N – Needs
      workers, a                                                                                – S – Support

      manager has                                                                               Communication: The executive coach David
      to be more                                                                                Clutterbuck once noted the irony that the
                                                                                                explosion in communication technology
      considered and                                                                            had led to little actual improvement in
      deliberate in                                                                             communication itself. Communication lies at
                                                                                                the heart of building trust and relationships.
      how and what is                                                                           With remote workers, a manager has to be more
      communicated,                                                                             considered and deliberate in how and what is
                                                                                                communicated, since walking over to them
      since walking over                                                                        whenever the manager wants isn’t an option.
      to them whenever                                                                               I use a model based on the work of Ed Nevis
                                                                                                that separates communication with reports
      the manager                                                                               into two areas; strategic interactions and intimate
      wants isn’t an                                                                            interactions. Strategic interactions are about
                                                                                                getting something done. The goal is to have
      option.                              COLM MURPHY LEADERSHIP COACH,                        something accomplished and managers use
                                           DyNAmIC LEADERSHIP DEVELOPmENT
                                                                                                their power and authority to communicate that
                                                Firstly, let’s think about what trust is. Dr    to their report.
                                           Duane Tway identified three components,                   Intimate interactions are about
                                           namely: do I trust this person to do as they say;    connectedness, with the focus on “how we are”.
                                           do I trust their competence to do something          These interactions are about the person and
                                           well; and do I trust their intentions?               “our” relationship. Here the managers need
                                                I coached a senior legal counsel who was        to take risks to be more open about their own
                                           based in the UK with a boss in California. She       vulnerabilities and feelings and letting the other
                                           had received feedback that he didn’t trust her.      person “in”. These actions in return encourage
                                           When we looked at the three components               the report to also open up and share.
                                           she quickly identified that the issue was                 Nevis argues that a manager needs to drive
                                           her manager’s perception of her intentions           both types of interactions and that they actually
                                           as opposed to doubts about her integrity or          reinforce each other. Effective relationships
                                           competence. This gave my client a focus for          need both types; by having intimate interactions
                                           exploring with her boss what he actually             one can be even more impactful when you
                                           thought her intentions were. It turned out           need to push the strategic interactions; by
                                           that he viewed many of her actions as self-          being strategic, key decisions can be made that
                                           promoting. Now she could focus on changing           deepen even the most intimate of relationships
                                           that perception which she did over time.             like family and friends. In my experience,

most bosses are good at the strategic part but        about cultural aspects on how we think and
it takes them a while to realise the benefit of       behave. The more you understand what lies
purposefully ensuring time to focus on being          behind each of you as a person the more trust
connected.                                            you will you have each other.
     Don’t fall into the trap of being all about            A quick thought on cultural difference
action plans, reports and business. Using the         – it’s a huge topic and is worth exploring. I
strategic/intimate model also allows one to be        like Manfred Kets de Vries’ comment that
more conscious of not just the nature of each         “recognising your own ignorance tends to be an
communication but also whether it needs               excellent preventive medicine against cultural
to be formal or informal, scheduled or ad             arrogance.”
hoc. The key, in my opinion, is balance: once
the communication flows, trust will follow.           Support: Being there for someone is a huge
Strategic interactions build the trust around         asset in any relationship. Two key ways to do
competence; intimate interactions build trust         it remotely are 1) provide regular constructive
around intentions.                                    feedback and recognition and 2) find the
                                                      equivalent of the Irish aunt.
Alignment: One of the biggest challenges of                You need to be structured in delivering
being a remote worker is knowing what actually        feedback and recognition to a remote employee.
is expected of you. Both manager and report           Do it formally at least every quarter and
need to have the same understanding of their          informally when appropriate. Being remote can
roles, responsibilities and of the goals being set.   feel very isolating – feedback gives the person
If you discuss them on the phone, write them          the road signs and maps for success.
down and follow up with an email. If you create            The Irish aunt is a more subtle form of
them by email, follow up with a discussion            support. Imagine your 18-year-old son or
to ensure you are all on the same page. Never         daughter is off to Canada for a year. Instinctively
assume complete alignment until you have              you will find an aunt, cousin or friend to keep
provided a few different methods for the goals to     an eye on them – someone to check in with
be reviewed and interpreted.                          them now and then, and someone for them to
     As a remote boss, you are going to have to       go to if they need help with something local. It
tolerate and accept ambiguity and uncertainly.        is delegating your parental responsibility and
My tip: be ultra-explicit about the “what” and        the same principle works in business: if you can
flexible on the “how to do it”. Letting go of the     connect your report to a colleague in the same
latter can be one of the toughest challenges a        location it provides you and them with another
leader can face since many pride themselves on        level of support while showing you care about
expertly knowing the ‘how’. No-one likes to be        them. That extra set of eyes and ears can be
micro-managed but it is especially painful for        invaluable for catching any early warning signs
both manager and report when it is done from          of miscommunication or misalignment.
thousands of miles away.                                   Does C.A.N.S apply to remote teams too?
                                                      I believe it does. In his great book “The Five
Needs: It always amazes me how few managers           Dysfunctions of a Team”, Patrick Lencioni states
ever ask their staff “What do you need from           that trust lies at the heart of a functioning
me?” A huge component of my coaching                  cohesive team. He highlights lack of trust as
work with managers and leaders is about               the core issue for any broken team. Building
helping them be more conscious of what they           trust within your remote team through
themselves need to be successful. A manager           Communication, Alignment, Needs and Support
who gives me direction, independence, respect         may differ in format than doing it one-to-one
and recognition gets more from me. So how does        but the principles are the same.
a manager find out their employee’s needs? Ask!            A final thought – managing a remote
And then tell them what you need from them.           worker is hard and does require more conscious
One need I always shared with my remote team          behaviours than managing someone on-site.
was “No surprises! I’m happy to empower you           But never forget the value that person brings by
but I never want to be surprised by a customer        being physically closer to your customers and
or my own boss on something you knew about.           markets.
No hiding bad news.”
     One can go further and share personal                 Colm Murphy is an executive coach for leaders
values with each other as well as being curious       and teams with Dynamic Leadership Development
                                                                                                            dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


      With companies
      embracing social
      media and other

                                           to Meet you,
      online tools as a
      way of marketing
      and growing their

      business, Sarita
      Murphy looks at
      the developing
      medium of web
      conferencing and
      webinars as an
      alternative to the
      cost and logistics
      issues of hosting a
      live event.

          nternational companies           LIVE AND DIRECT A webinar          buyers, generate interest, build   WHO’S USING Software
          of scale have passed the         is an interactive seminar          early relationships and brand      company FeedHenry, based in
          cusp of the webinar wave.        conducted over the internet.       awareness before trying to         Waterford, uses webinars all
          A 2009 Forrester survey          Users participate via their        progress a sale with a potential   the time for both generating
      of 249 business-to-business          computer and are connected         customer. There are benefits       and qualifying sales leads.
      marketing professionals (of          to other participants online.      for solo entrepreneurs, who        Mobile telecoms firm dotMobi
      large firms with 50 or more          A webinar is usually a live        can run a professional sales       has conducted webinars for
      employees) revealed that 62          presentation; it happens in real   webinar at minimum cost and        potential customers. Caroline
      per cent of companies regularly      time and involves participants     time – much more effective         Greer, director of policy and
      use webinars and webcasts            through chat, file sharing or      than physically travelling         industry relations with dotMobi,
      as a marketing tactic. This          whiteboards. There are certain     to multiple locations for          suggests webinars are useful for
      closely compares with 68 per         basic tools you need in order      meetings.                          presenting detailed information
      cent using social networks, and      to participate in a webinar – a          They can boost awareness     and conducting product demos.
      surprisingly surpasses the 55        decent internet connection,        of their product for a lot less    They allow the company to
      per cent of companies using          a suitable webinar service         than a traditional marketing       simultaneously target a wide
      Twitter for the same purpose.        provider and basic education       budget. It is also a useful        audience based in different
           Webinars and webcasts           on using online tools, including   way of weeding out time            locations around the world.
      have exceeded print                  other basics such as webcams       wasters and finding the            The webinar organiser can
      advertising, online display          and microphones. Some of           genuinely interested potential     tightly control the format via
      ads and blogs as a productive        the main web conferencing          customer. The more advanced        slides, mute button etc and the
      marketing tactic. By 2011,           facilities include Adobe           your technology, the more          specific way that questions can
      Gartner predicts that web            Acrobat Connect Pro, Citrix        interactive the webinar can be.    be asked, which can have its
      conferencing will be available       Online’s GoToWebinar,              The webinar also has longevity     benefits for some audiences.
      as a standard facility (to 75        Microsoft Office Live Meeting      – if it is recorded, it can be          Typically, dotMobi has
      per cent of corporate users),        and Cisco WebEx.                   hosted on Youtube or another       used webinars for sales and
      alongside email, calendaring,             Webinars are mostly           video sharing site for clients/    marketing, but also occasionally
      instant messaging and other          introduced as an early activity    customers to access at any         for PR. There are questions about
      collaborative facilities.            in the sales process to educate    stage in the future.               the possibility of creating quality


                                                                                                              Webinars and
                                                                                                              webcasts have
                                                                                                              exceeded print
                                                                                                              online display
                                                                                                              ads and blogs
                                                                                                              as a productive
                                                                                                              marketing tactic

sales leads from a webinar,         comments that you would miss          the time and budget saving             topics to assist with your
given that face-to-face contact     out on a few areas by replacing       here is even greater. From the         follow up
with potential customers is         a physical event with a webinar:      organiser’s perspective, hosting    – don’t stick to PowerPoint
missing. However, Forrester’s       – Face-to-face networking             a webinar instantly cuts out           – a webinar is a great way
research indicated that 33 per        - with both presenters and          venue hire and catering costs.         to use other PC tools. Video
cent of companies said webinars       other participants at the event          Some best practice tips for       creates a personal touch, also
were highly effective ways of       – Gaining industry knowledge          conducting webinars:                   navigating to websites, use
generating leads, with another 48     and shared experiences/case         – Use webinars to educate, not         whiteboards etc
per cent saying it was somewhat       studies of other companies            sell to your audience (the        – Organise a post-webinar
effective. Caroline Greer adds        can be more difficult to pass         selling can be done after you        meeting/follow-up call to get
that while a well-organised           on via webinars                       have qualified your leads)           feedback.
webinar can develop sales leads,    – It is easier to build a rapport     – The ideal duration is one hour          As web conferencing and
these will particularly come from     with potential customers in         – Explain the process of how        interactive technology develops,
good quality follow-up after the      the flesh.                            the webinar will work – when      this area is bound to grow in the
main presentation.                                                          listeners can ask questions/      future. In a few years, it will
     However, while webinars        TIME SAVING However,                    interact or download the          be commonplace to participate
are well adopted as a marketing     for short presentations, the            material after the event          in virtual trade fairs, which for
strategy, event organisers do not   primary benefit of a webinar          – Keep the webinar relevant to      anyone who has done a three- or
appear to be migrating towards      versus a physical event is a            the audience and explain what     four-day show will know, the
webinars, in place of holding       no-brainer – more effective use         topics you will cover             saving on your feet will be just
a physical event. Matt norton       of time. A webinar can go ahead       – Engage the audience from the      as good as for your budget!
from Sentry Wireless believes a     irrespective of environmental           beginning                         According to Gartner, there will
webinar is more of a supplement     factors like this year’s ash cloud,   – Keep the event as interactive     continue to be a shift in the way
to a useful event you plan to       or security issues that prevent         as possible to keep the           online meetings are conducted
attend as oppose to replacing       people from travelling.                 audience interested – using       in the future, with things like
an existing event. A regular             For entrepreneurs who do           audience polls is a clever way    virtual meetings with human
participant in relevant trade       not yet have a marketing team           to do this and can also gauge     controlled Avatars emerging.
and sectoral events, norton         to send to interesting events,          level of interest in particular   Well, one step at a time…
                                                                                                               dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


      Austin Rutledge                              he International Chamber of Commerce’s            The Incoterms 2010 rules take account
                                                   latest revision of its internationally-      of changes in transport practice, the spread of
      talks through                                recognised trade terms Incoterms             customs-free zones, increased use of electronic
      the implications                             2010 will go into effect on January 1,       communication and security issues. This revision
      of changes to                        2011. Incoterms offer international traders          seeks to address cargo security obligations,
                                           a type of unambiguous shorthand – a series           which are linked to the respective EU Authorised
      Incoterms 2010                       of expressions that buyers and sellers can           Economic Operator (AEO) and the USA Custom-
      rules – a kind of                    communicate in and understand regardless             Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT)
      Esperanto for                        of their home language. They enable the              cargo security and Customs pre-notification
      international trade                  contracting parties to set out clearly and           requirements.
                                           concisely the extent of their respective                  The main changes include the abolishing of
      – and explains                       obligations, and above all, the moment when          four Incoterms and addition of two new terms.
      how they will help                   costs and risks are transferred from the exporter    1. Gone are four terms (DAF, DES, DEQ and
      smooth the way                       to the importer. They will avoid the risks of           DDU) which are replaced by two new
                                           misunderstandings or misinterpretation of               terms (DAP – Delivered at Place and DAT
      for more efficient                   contracts which are very common, ensuring               – Delivered at Terminal)
      shipment of goods                    businesses save money and that payments are          2. Creation of two new groups of INCOTERmS
      around the world.                    made as per terms in the contract.                      – (a) rules for any mode or modes of transport
                                                Incoterms’ main purpose is to guide                and (b) rules for sea and inland waterways
                                           exporters and importers through the critical            only, in place of four groups previously
                                           aspects of international sales contracts. They       3. Express reference to the use of ‘equivalent
                                           identify the obligations, costs and risks involved      electronic records’, if the parties agree, or the
                                           between seller and buyer in the delivery of             normal process
                                           goods, and reduce the risk of legal complications.   4. Amended insurance cover to reflect the
                                                                                                   alterations made to the Institute Cargo
                                                                                                5. Allocation of parties’ respective obligations
                                                                                                   to obtain or to provide information in order to
                                                                                                   obtain security-related clearances
                                                                                                6. Responsibility for terminal handling charges
                                                                                                   expressly allocated
                                                                                                7. Obligation to ‘procure’ goods to reflect current
                                                                                                   practices in string sales

                                                                                                8. Rules which serve both domestic and
                                                                                                   international trade.


     DAT term means that the seller retains all           The second group consists of FAS (Free
risks in the movement of the goods until they are
unloaded from the arriving vehicle (road, rail, sea
                                                    Alongside Ship), FOB (Free on Board), CFR
                                                    (Cost and Freight) and CIF (Cost Insurance
                                                                                                           t  he word ‘Incoterm’
                                                                                                              is an abbreviation of
                                                                                                           ‘International Commercial
or air), and placed at the disposal of the buyer    and Freight), to be used only for Sea and
                                                                                                           Term’ and the chosen
at the agreed named terminal in the destination     Inland Waterways Transport. FAS, FOB, CFR
                                                                                                           Incoterm is a term of
country. The seller is also responsible for the     and CIF are no longer recommended for use
                                                                                                           the contract of sale. The
transport of the goods through any transit          for containerised traffic. This is because the
                                                                                                           International Chamber of
(third countries) and must enter into a contract    practicalities of container handling are not
                                                                                                           Commerce (ICC) created
of carriage, which is responsible for export        suitable to the risk transfer point provided by
                                                                                                           Incoterms in 1936.
clearance. However, the seller is not responsible   these terms.
                                                                                                           Since then, this set of
for import clearance.                                     Therefore, new Incoterms 2010 gives scope
                                                                                                           international commercial
                                                    to avoid the FAS, FOB, CFR and CIF terms,
                                                                                                           terms has undergone
CONTRACT OF CARRIAGE DAP term is                    for which conditions are fully covered in the
                                                                                                           revisions in 1953, 1967,
similar to DAT (seller retains all the risks in the first group’s similar terms; FCA, CPT and CIP,
                                                                                                           1976, 1980, 1990, and
movement of the goods until they are delivered), provided the named place is clearly specified.
                                                                                                           the latest revision was
but the buyer becomes responsible for unloading           Insurance obligations under CIP /CIF now
                                                                                                           introduced in 2000.
of the goods from the arriving vehicle (road, rail, require the seller to obtain cargo insurance cover
                                                                                                              Incoterms 2010
sea or air). The seller must enter into a contract  provided by Clauses (C) of the Institute Cargo
                                                                                                           will consist of only 11
of carriage and is also responsible for export      Clauses. While this is the minimum level of
                                                                                                           Incoterms, a reduction
clearance but is not responsible for import         insurance and covers only major casualties, such
                                                                                                           from the 13 current
clearance.                                          as total loss of cargo, the buyer also has the
                                                                                                           Incoterms 2000. Detailed
     The Incoterm groups have been reduced          option (at their expense) of requiring the seller to
                                                                                                           information on the new
from four to two – (a) rules for any mode or        increase the cover provided to say Clauses (A) or
                                                                                                           Incoterms 2010 rules
modes of transport and (b) rules for sea and        (B) of the Institute Cargo Clauses or any similar
                                                                                                           is available on the ICC
inland waterways only.                              clauses, such as Institute War Clauses and/or
                                                                                                           website: www.iccwbo.
      The first group consists of EXW (Ex-Works), Institute Strikes Clauses or similar clauses.
FCA (Free Carrier), CPT (Carriage Paid To), CIP     Irish importers can avoid the need to take out
(Carriage and Insurance Paid To), DAT (Delivered separate insurance cover but can now ‘top up’
at Terminal), DAP (Delivered at Place) and DDP      the seller’s insurance cover with the need to only
(Delivered Duty Paid), which applies to any mode pay the additional premium.
of transport or multi-modal transport contracts.

                                                                                                           dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


      The Incoterms                        DIVISION OF COSTS One of the key benefits
                                           in these new rules is a clear definition of
                                                                                                     Incoterms are only one part of the
                                                                                               contract and not the whole contract, and in
      2010 rules                           division of costs. This area has always been a      particular, they say nothing about the price
      take account                         problem, where the buyer may end up paying
                                           twice for some transport-related fees. For
                                                                                               to be paid or the method of payment that
                                                                                               is used in the transaction. Furthermore,
      of changes in                        example, this could happen when the seller          Incoterms 2010 do not deal with the transfer
      transport practice,                  contracts for pre-paid carriage, and the
                                           terms of carriage incorporate the movement
                                                                                               of ownership of the goods, breach of contract,
                                                                                               or product liability: all of these issues need to
      the spread of                        of a consignment within a port or container         be considered in the contract of sale.
      customs-free                         terminal facility at destination. yet the carrier
                                           may charge additional fees to the buyer at
                                                                                                     We are often asked which Incoterms best
                                                                                               reflect our clients’ terms and conditions. Our
      zones, increased                     destination. Of course, the buyer has already       advice is to gain a clear understanding of the
      use of electronic                    paid for these in the price of the goods and will
                                           therefore be double hit where the additional
                                                                                               practical use of Incoterms, which should then
                                                                                               be followed up by clear contract definitions
      communication                        fees are levied at destination. Irish importers     and expert legal advice where necessary.
      and security                         need to examine carefully their import freight
                                           charges to avoid paying fees that have already
                                                                                               When defining sales and delivery terms,
                                                                                               it is important to understand the detailed
      issues.                              been borne by the seller and included in the        explanations of the Incoterms 2010 update
                                           invoice price.                                      and reflect the substance of the term in the
                                                We have found that the usefulness of           contract.
                                           these rules largely depends upon the parties
                                           selecting the correct Incoterms rule for any        Austin Rutledge is the CEO of Export Edge
                                           given transaction and in ensuring that the          Training & Consultancy, which provides
                                           rules are properly incorporated into the sales      advice on trade, banking payments and
                                           contract, in both substance as well as form.        credit management, as well as outsourcing
                                                                                               services covering the processing of
                                                                                               export documentation in compliance with
                                                                                               International Chamber of Commerce rules.
                                                                                               Further information concerning trade issues
                                                                                               can be accessed on



Uncertainty around payment or other commercial disputes
are an ever-present risk for export-focused companies,
especially in the current economic climate. Paul Golden
looks at the growing use of mediation as a way for firms to
avoid a costly day in court.

don’t litigate
       imited availability of protective          changing delivery terms. In situations where the
       mechanisms such as export credit           customer/supplier/partner is disputing some or
       insurance means Irish companies            all aspects of their agreement rather than simply
       seeking to avoid payment-related           refusing to pay, legal action often follows.
or other commercial disagreements with            However, the time and expense involved in
international partners need to factor mediation   international litigation in particular has focused
into their thinking. At the publication of the    attention on alternative dispute resolution
Irish Exporters Association’s latest quarterly    processes such as mediation.
review, chief executive John Whelan referred           The Mediators Institute of Ireland (MII)
to withdrawal of invoice discounting cover        defines mediation as ‘a process in which
and credit insurance as being among the           an impartial and independent third party
major challenges facing Irish exporters.          facilitates communication and negotiation and
The Government remains opposed to the             promotes voluntary decision making by the
introduction of any state-supported export        parties to a dispute to assist them to reach a
credit insurance scheme.                          mutually acceptable solution’. Chief Justice John
     There are other steps that companies can     Murray has stated that the perception of the
take to minimise their exposure to bad debt,      courts as the first and only resort for resolving
from conducting thorough credit assessments to    commercial disputes needs to change.

                                                                    dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET

                                           “We have                                                          “One of the reasons
                                           lagged behind other                                               mediation was
                                           jurisdictions in this                                             not popular in the
                                           area, in part because                                             commercial context
                                           of our inherited                                                  was that it was
                                           common law system,                                                easier to litigate
                                           which involved less                                               and let the court
                                           case management by                                                make the decision,
                                           the courts,”                                                      but companies can
                                                                                                             no longer justify
                                                                                                             spending large sums
                                                                                                             on legal fees.”
                                           MICHAEL O’CONNELL, CHAIRMAn,                                      KAREN ERWIN
                                           COMMERCIAL MEdIATORS                                              ERWIn MEdIATIOn SERVICES

                                           LEGAL CHANGE An amendment to the rules            signed by both sides) that sets out the ground
                                           of the Supreme Court and High Court that came     rules. A preliminary meeting or telephone
                                           into effect on 16 November enables the courts     conference usually follows within about two
                                           to stay a matter pending mediation and to take    weeks at which the mediator explains the
                                           into account ‘the refusal or failure without      procedure and seeks to establish the issue or
                                           good reason of any party to participate in any    issues involved.
                                           alternative dispute resolution process’ when          “Companies don’t always turn up at
                                           considering the awarding of the costs of any      mediation with their lawyers,” says O’Connell.
                                           appeal or action.                                 The session will usually take at least a day,
                                                Michael O’Connell, chairman of               although the mediator might suggest a follow-
                                           Commercial Mediators, describes this              up meeting to continue the process.
                                           amendment as an endorsement of mediation
                                           as a recognised method of resolving disputes.     SWIFT CONCLUSION In exceptional
                                           “We have lagged behind other jurisdictions        cases, the parties can ask the mediator to
                                           in this area, in part because of our inherited    make a non-binding recommendation,
                                           common law system, which involved less case       but he describes this as a “last resort” and
                                           management by the courts,” he explains. “But      stresses that many disputes are subsequently
                                           over the last ten years or so, many disputes      resolved even if there was no agreement
                                           between Irish and overseas firms have been        reached during the actual mediation session.
                                           successfully resolved through mediation           “The object at all times is to get the parties
                                           when one or both parties was considering – or     to reach their own agreement,” concludes
                                           had even started – litigation in one or both      O’Connell, who says the entire process is
                                           countries.”                                       usually concluded within a month of first
                                                O’Connell goes on to outline how the         contact.
                                           process works. “At any stage in a dispute,             Karen Erwin of Erwin Mediation Services
                                           either party can contact the other directly       reckons the recession has boosted interest in
                                           to suggest mediation without prejudice.           alternative dispute resolution strategies. “One
                                           There was a perception in the past that to        of the reasons mediation was not popular in
                                           suggest mediation might be seen as a form         the commercial context was that it was easier
                                           of concession, but the courts don’t see it        to litigate and let the court make the decision,
                                           that way.” This contact can be initiated          but companies can no longer justify spending
                                           by management, accountants or legal               large sums on legal fees. Commercial court
                                           representatives.                                  judge Peter Kelly has been a strong advocate of
                                                The next step is to obtain a joint letter    mediation and most people entering the court
                                           requesting the mediation, which the parties       are aware that they will be asked if they have
                                           will send to an agreed mediator. At this point,   attempted to resolve the dispute through a
                                           the mediator frames an agreement (to be           mediator.”


                                    “Whatever can be                                                    “... with speed of
                                    said about the cost                                                 resolution, greatly
                                    and time efficiency                                                 reduced costs, the
                                    of mediation over                                                   confidentiality of
                                    litigation can be                                                   the process and the
                                    multiplied when                                                     increased likelihood
                                    international                                                       of creating an
                                    commercial disputes                                                 ongoing positive
                                    arise.”                                                             business relationship,
                                                                                                        this is one of the
                                                                                                        main advantages of
                                    PADRAIG CULBERT                                                     SABINE WALSH
                                    CULBERT MEdIATIOn                                                   SW MEdIATIOn

     Erwin, who is also president of the MII,     as arbitration, conciliation or informal              MEDIATION BENEFITS
says bringing the two parties together in a room  negotiation,” she says.                               AT A GLANCE
could be the first chance they have had to tell        Walsh acknowledges that cross-border
each other what has happened and explain the      mediation proceedings can prove challenging,          – Less expensive and faster
impact it has had and that such face-to-face      but says a skilled mediator can overcome                than court proceedings
contact alone can move the process forward.       geographical, language and cultural barriers.         – Confidential outcomes
     She acknowledges that many companies         “The general principles seem to be very similar       – Problems can be solved
find it difficult to understand that the mediator in most countries and while service providers           more creatively than in a
is not there to hand down a decision but rather   within the same country will often use different        purely legal setting
to enable the parties to reach a consensus.       processes, there is still not nearly as much          – Face-to-face contact
However, this does not mean that any agreement    variation in mediation processes as there would         between parties can speed
reached through mediation has no legal            be in legal systems.”                                   resolution
standing – the mediator can draft an agreement         This point is echoed by Padraig Culbert of       – Judges consider refusal to
that is legally binding and can either be signed  Culbert Mediation, who along with a number              engage in mediation when
by the parties or held in escrow if they wish to  of other legal professionals will be launching          awarding costs
consult their legal representatives (if they have Mediation Services Ireland in early 2011.             – Less variance in mediation
not been present during the process).             “Whatever can be said about the cost and time           techniques than legal
                                                  efficiency of mediation over litigation can be
     One of the challenges for all practitioners of                                                       systems in different
                                                  multiplied when international commercial
alternative dispute resolution strategies is to get                                                       countries
                                                  disputes arise,” he explains. “Domestic litigation
both sides together before it is too late. “Ideally,
mediation should be employed as soon as the       costs can pale into relative insignificance when
                                                  a matter has to be heard in the courts of another
dispute arises to give it the best chance of saving
the commercial relationship,” adds Erwin. “It is  jurisdiction, where in some cases the costs of
also much more flexible than litigation in terms  local lawyers must be added to those of domestic
of agreeing additional terms such as how and      legal representatives.”
when payments will be made once an agreement           Since mediation is confidential, no
has been reached.”                                information emerges about the success or
                                                  failure of individual processes and it is therefore
FLEXIBLE OPTIONS Sabine Walsh of SW               impossible to state with certainty how many
Mediation agrees that mediation facilitates more cases are resolved to both sides’ satisfaction.
creative solutions than are usually available to  However, Culbert refers to a large-scale project
the courts. “Together with speed of resolution,   undertaken by the UK government during 2008
greatly reduced costs, the confidentiality of the and 2009 – when it resolved more than eight
process and the increased likelihood of creating in 10 outstanding disputes via mediation – and
an ongoing positive business relationship, this   anecdotal evidence to support his view that
is one of the main advantages of mediation        mediation achieves a successful outcome in
over other dispute resolution options such        about 85 per cent of cases.

                                                                                                         dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


      Specialist tax
      advisors CXC
      Ireland saw its

                                           for the neW
      clients leave
      Ireland for work
      as the recession
      hit, so it took the
      sensible option
      and followed them
      to new markets.
      David Compton


    t’s an unfortunate fact that the recession
    is prompting more Irish nationals to seek
                                                           The move seemed a natural for the two
                                                      managing directors, both chartered accountants,
                                                                                                           “The freelancers
    employment abroad. Many of them are               each with substantial experience operating           we serviced were
    professional freelancers who do work on
a contract basis. Targeting contractors such as
                                                      abroad. Lennon spent over eight years in
                                                      London with large multinationals in finance
                                                                                                           leaving Ireland
these, Cork-based CXC Ireland has grown its           and property. The CV of Dineen – who founded         to pursue work
specialist accounting firm by not just managing
their clients’ accounting needs, but by helping
                                                      CXC in 2002 – includes spells as an entrepreneur
                                                      and consultant in Russia.
guide these highly skilled workers through the             ‘Re-tooling’ the business – changing the        outside the
minefield of EU and local tax and labour laws.
     “When the downturn hit hard in 2008,
                                                      scope of services offered to accommodate the
                                                      shifting customer base – meant up-skilling
                                                                                                           country … If we
we had a great business focused on assisting          with new accountancy expertise they brought          wanted to retain
freelancers in the home market who were
working for large multinationals mainly in
                                                      on board to address the expanded legal and
                                                      regulatory environment in which they were
                                                                                                           these clients and
information technology, engineering and               doing business. This highly successful strategy      grow our own
pharma,” says Fergal Lennon, one of the
firm’s joint managing directors. “The business
                                                      led to CXC now managing the taxation and
                                                      administration affairs of over 1,600 freelance
                                                                                                           customer base, we
was completely Irish at the time. Then we             professionals throughout the EU. The                 needed to follow
experienced 18 straight months of revenue
decline when the large companies stopped
                                                      company’s Irish-based staff has grown from four
                                                      people when Lennon joined the company in
renewing contracts with their freelancers and         2004 to 35 between its Dublin and Cork offices.
when contract workers started accepting offers             Dineen explains that CXC’s business model
of permanent employment to improve their              going forward also includes maintaining a keen
own financial security.”                              competitive edge on costs by bolstering its Irish
     CXC saw its annual revenue fall from €2.9        operations with high-skill, high-quality jobs
million in its 2008 fiscal year to €2.5 million the   while using a cost-efficient Indian operation
following year. “We started scrambling to find        that the company owns to service the back-end
ways to reverse the decline in revenues,” says        administration.
Lennon. “The first thing we did was to build
upon our existing base and move into a couple         CLIENT PIPELINE When CXC decided to
of new key sectors, specifically aviation and         make the move into the rest of Europe, it first
medical.”                                             went to primary sources of client referrals to
     The company stabilised the business, and         bolster its presence abroad – recruiting agencies.
has now reversed the trend so that they will          Working with the agencies had always been            FERGAL LENNON
                                                                                                           JOINT mANAGING DIRECTOR,
be realising income exceeding €3 million this         the most efficient route to end-clients, as it       CXC IRELAND
fiscal year, and forecasting continued growth for     was the several hundred recruiters in Ireland
the foreseeable future. However, what gave the        who were staffing contract jobs for the large
company a real boost wasn’t relying upon the          multinationals.
Irish market, but re-thinking who its potential             CXC’s marketing strategy is concentrated
customer base really was by watching what             on relationship-building with the recruiting
existing clients were doing.                          industry so that CXC is listed as a preferred
                                                      supplier with the agencies. That way, when it
ALL ABROAD “The secret to our reversal of             comes time for freelance contractors to set up
fortune came when we decided to re-define our         business to work abroad under contract, CXC
market parameters and expand our business             is well positioned to assist and become their
geographically,” adds Michael Dineen, the             accountant. The cash flow is, therefore, from
company’s other joint managing director. “The         the multinationals to the agencies, then to CXC
                                                                                                                                                 PHOTO: MARK MCCARTHY, BARRY’S PHOTOGRAPHIC SERVICE

freelancers we serviced were leaving Ireland to       which manages the freelance professional’s
pursue work opportunities outside the country.        accounts and pays him his salary as an employee
They were dealing not only with Irish law but         of a limited Irish company that he works under.
the complexities inherent in doing business           This is necessary from a tax-compliance and
cross-border in a maze of accounting and labour       legal perspective versus doing business as a sole
laws and regulations. If we wanted to retain          trader.
these clients and grow our own customer                     “We leveraged our existing relationships
base, we needed to follow them into these new         with the recruiting industry to make contacts
markets.”                                             outside of Ireland in countries where the large
                                                                                                            dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


                                                           “The recession has                   agencies had affiliated and branch offices,” says
                                                                                                Lennon. “We got an immediate entrée into a
                                                                                                                                                    the freelance professional who moves from any
                                                                                                                                                    EU country to another – so that CXC is servicing
                                                           actually proved                      large number of new markets.”                       the accounts of more than just Irish residents.
                                                           to be a blessing.                         He further explains that, as a preferred
                                                                                                supplier for the recruiting agencies, CXC offers
                                                                                                                                                    “This focus truly puts CXC at the cutting edge
                                                                                                                                                    of tax work,” says Dineen. “There’s no other
                                                           It forced us to                      many free services and advice to entice potential   accounting firm specialising in addressing the
                                                           evaluate new                         new clients to sign on to its basic account
                                                                                                management business. “Not only do we set
                                                                                                                                                    needs of contractors moving country-to-country
                                                                                                                                                    in this way.”
                                                           markets that                         the freelancers up to do business as a limited           CXC has already seen substantial growth
                                                           we might not                         company in whatever county they are in, we
                                                                                                ensure they are registered with all the proper
                                                                                                                                                    from these non-Irish resident clients. “Nearly
                                                                                                                                                    a quarter of our current client list is from
                                                           have otherwise                       authorities to be in compliance with tax and        overseas,” Lennon notes. “That would be from
                                                           considered if                        labour laws of the host country and advise them
                                                                                                on tax planning and investment, if necessary.
                                                                                                                                                    a zero base just over a couple of years ago.
                                                                                                                                                    Developing our international customer base
                                                           business had                         Basically, we’re a hand-holding service that        is definitely where our future growth will be
                                                           remained growing                     walks them through the entire process so
                                                                                                they can hit the ground running in their new
                                                                                                                                                    coming from.”
                                                                                                                                                         Dineen advises other Irish companies to
                                                           at home.”                            assignments.”                                       do the hard graft required before taking their
                                                                                                                                                    business abroad. “The first step is talking to
                                                                                                LOCAL KNOWLEDGE In executing its                    existing clients and industry contacts,” he says.
                                                                                                expansion plans into the rest of Europe, CXC        “Do as much research as possible about the
                                                                                                has made use of Enterprise Ireland in-country       other countries’ business environments. See
                                                                                                consultants to gain market knowledge and            who you already know who’s doing business in
                                                                                                make further introductions. “We definitely          the target market. In our own case, there’s no
                                                                                                need to develop a local presence in these new       existing market research or news on our type
                                                                                                countries,” insists Dineen. “Enterprise Ireland     of business because the market segment is so
                                                                                                has been very helpful in opening doors that         specialised. Also, Enterprise Ireland’s assistance
                                                                                                are allowing us to set up shop out of Ireland       can be invaluable in finding the right people on
                                                                                                much more efficiently. We’ve met with local         the ground to help look after the business when
                                                                                                accounting firms which we will utilise as we        you need to hire locally.”
                                                                                                establish our base.”                                     After nearly two years of operating under
                                                                                                     The Irish company is initially targeting       the revised expansion strategy, Lennon is
                                                                                                the Netherlands, then Germany and France            extremely pleased with the decision to target
                                                           MICHAEL DINEEN
                                                                                                as markets to establish a sales and marketing       the overseas market. “The recession has actually
                                                           JOINT mANAGING DIRECTOR,             operation. “It’s critical that we have someone      proved to be a blessing”, he says. “It forced us to
                                                           CXC IRELAND
                                                                                                on the ground there to explain to potential new     evaluate new markets that we might not have
                                                                                                clients in their native language what we offer,”    otherwise considered if business had remained
                                                                                                says Dineen. “The actual accounting work,           growing at home – or at least not moved
                                                                                                though, will then be handled back in Ireland by     into them so quickly. At the beginning of the
                                                                                                our tax experts in those areas.”                    recession, we were just an Irish company. Now
                                                                                                     The move into the UK and mainland              we’re an international presence in a rapidly
                                                                                                Europe has led to an additional class of client –   growing industry sector we own.”

                                                                                                THE FUTURE’S ROSY FOR CONTRACT WORKERS                               – 75 per cent of survey
                                                                                                                                                                       respondents expect their
                                                                                                                                                                       company to enter or compete
                                                                                                An Economist Intelligence Unit report, sponsored by the Society

                                                                                                                                                                       in more foreign markets over
                                                                                                for Human Resource Management, points to a shift by large
                                                                                                                                                                       the coming ten years
                                                                                                companies to contingent workers at the expense of permanent
                                                                                                workers over the next ten years. These are the findings of Global    – 61 per cent expect a growing
                                                                                                Firms in 2020: The Next Decade of Change for Organisations and         proportion of functions to be
                                                                                                Workers, a study based on a June/July 2010 survey of 479 senior        outsourced
                                                                                                executives on anticipated hiring practices.                          – 62 per cent of respondents
                                                                                                   A portrait of what the typical company might look like in           expect a growing proportion
                                                                                                2010 includes a larger contract workforce spread out over more         of workers to be contingency
                                                                                                countries:                                                             workers.
                                                           THE MARKET | dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011

We look to the West Coast of the US for technological
innovation, but that shouldn’t rule it out as a location for
forward-thinking Irish firms.

hoW green
is My valley?

       ilicon Valley may be the source of new thinking in the high tech sector, and the signs
       are that optimism comes a close second to innovation. “We are seeing signs that the
       recession is levelling out – we’ve been more active now in the past six months than in a
       long time,” says David Smith, senior vice president for telecoms with Enterprise Ireland.
Companies evaluating a presence in the US can do a lot worse than pitch up on the West Coast,
he says. “If you are unsure where to come, you can’t beat Silicon Valley for mobile and telecom
connections. There are many reasons for this. All the big players have their headquarters
or offices here, from traditional networking and hardware companies such as Cisco and HP
to the new-kids-on-the-telecoms-block such as Apple and Google. The largest social media
companies Facebook and LinkedIn are within a few miles of Mountain View.”
     All of the large US telecoms carriers have offices in Silicon Valley as do the international
operators including Orange, Huawei, Samsung and BT. Seattle and San Diego are also just two
hours away and are home to T-Mobile, AT&T Wireless, Clearwire, Qualcomm and Cricket.

                                                                                                    dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET


      SILICON SUPPORT                        Moreover, Silicon Valley is the epicentre     between American and Irish or European
      PROGRAMMES                       of VC and angel funding, and Smith says that        companies is that US companies will talk about
                                       Enterprise Ireland is well embedded into this       their products at a much earlier stage. They are
      Business Acceleration            network. “There’s probably a networking event       out there, working at socialising their product,
      – supports local business with   most days of the week where you can get to meet     even when it’s incomplete, in order to get
      development resources            senior execs at all of these companies.”            customer input and feedback early,” Smith adds.
                                             EI recently relocated its offices from Palo        “That’s one of the dangers for Irish
      Marcomms – gets companies        Alto to Mountain View and in the process            companies. They wait for the product to
      to think about marketing and     gained larger incubator space for Irish firms. No   be perfect and then launch, whereas their
      PR as well as focusing on sales; one technology from Ireland is dominating, says     American counterparts are out here gaining
      it helps them become more        Smith. The roster includes companies offering       market intelligence and crucial customer
      strategic in approaching the     storage and mobile apps, to translation service     feedback at a very early stage.”
      market                           providers. Others are in cloud technology
                                       and social networking such as NewBay to             COST CONSIDERATIONS Money is another
      Leadership 4 Growth – brings mobile backhaul, data offload with companies            obstacle with office rent and staff costs to be
      over executives of high-growth such as Mingoa [see panel]. Others have been          considered, Smith adds. “You could spend
      Irish companies to educate       operating in the US market for some time,           $250K in hiring a sales person in salary,
      and get them into the frame      including Openet, Accuris and Sentaca. “Ireland     bonus, insurance and healthcare alone. It’s an
      of mind of being a dominant      is now being recognised for having excellent        expensive proposition to put someone into the
      international player             companies across the whole mobile spectrum,”        market here. But if you don’t have someone
                                       says Smith.                                         fulltime here, or a business accelerator working
      Graduates 4 International                                                            heavily on your behalf, it’s very difficult to be
      Growth – puts new graduates      OVERCOMING OBSTACLES There are a lot                successful here operating from a sole base in
      with companies overseas to       of rewards for Irish companies here, but on the     Ireland.”
      work on projects                 flip side of the coin, there are many challenges.        Smith also warns firms not to
                                       For companies, one of the biggest challenges        underestimate the time needed to make a sale.
      Wireless Advisory Group          is physical – the time zone and the time it         “If you are trying to make a sale with a top-tier
      – gives on-the-ground strategic takes to get here. “Eight hours makes a big          carrier or Google, for example, you are looking
      and tactical advice about the    difference. The impact of that is that there are    at a 12 to 18, and maybe even to 24-month sales
      market from seasoned industry only a few hours in the morning companies can          cycle. It takes a lot of resourcing and a continued
      veterans.                        do business with their team at home,” Smith         effort to make that happen,” he says.
                                       observes.                                                Smith believes there is a compelling case
                                             There’s also a challenge to the Irish         for Irish tech firms to choose Silicon Valley as
                                       mentality, in particular the differences in the     a place to do business. “If you’ve got a product
                                       way companies network at home and the way           or service that is filling a need and solving an
                                       they do so here. The Valley is all about making     issue or problem then it’s the right time to come.
                                       the strongest impact in the shortest time. “The     People don’t buy products and services for any
                                       opportunities for networking here are so much       other reason than to solve a problem and grow
                                       greater but people have to be prepared and          revenue. If you’ve something out there that has
                                       sometimes trained to get the message across         an identified need in the marketplace, now is the
                                       about their company and get that ‘elevator          time. Those windows of opportunity are quite
                                       pitch’ down to 10 or 15 seconds. Here, you are up   small.”
                                       against very seasoned American entrepreneurs
                                       who are so used to presenting themselves and        If you have any questions or want to see about
                                       are extremely competent sellers,” says Smith.       coming out to the Silicon Valley office contact David
                                             Another cultural difference is the stage      Smith at or
                                       at which companies talk about the products          follow him on Twitter @davidivorsmith or contact
                                       they have. “You’ll find that one big difference     Brian Glynn at


going to California
– irish firMs tell their stories

       he West Coast of the US can be as useful      estimates the total market for the hardware is in
       to early-stage firms as to established        the millions of units and Mingoa has already had
       players. Mingoa, a high potential start-up    early discussions with a company in California
in the telecoms market, didn’t even wait to have     that is looking for a high-volume product like
a product ready to go before seriously targeting     this.
the US market. Meanwhile Cork company Zenith               For now, Mingoa is still working on finalising
Technologies’ office on the West Coast is its        its technology but being on the ground in the
fourth base in the US and it’s a natural extension   US has proved invaluable in the company’s
of customer relationships in Europe.                 development. “We’re definitely pre-product,”
      “Silicon Valley is setting the example         he says. “For Irish companies that are so
for everyone else to follow. The leadership          distant from the market, don’t spend money
is coming out of California,” states Mingoa’s        on developing a product and find out it’s the
managing director Con Cremin.                        wrong one. We will develop a stronger product
      Rather than visit each potential customer      for having had that input. There’s nothing like
with all of the logistics and set-up issues that     getting feedback from a guy who’s interested in
would entail, Mingoa recently took space at EI’s     buying it.”
office in Mountain View where it could schedule            Mingoa now finds itself at a crossroads
meetings close together and make the best            of sourcing money either from customers or
use of its time. “We were able to meet half a        investors, but either way Cremin is sure of the
dozen people in the space of three to four hours     value in visiting the US.
whereas if we were visiting each company it                Zenith is at the other end of the scale. It is
would have taken much longer,” says Cremin.          a provider of automation, process control and
      Mingoa was formed two years ago but a          manufacturing systems to the life sciences and
visit to the CTIA Telecoms trade show in the         other industries, and three of the world’s top ten
US last March, supported by Enterprise Ireland,      pharmaceutical companies are already using
also helped to crystallise thinking around a         Zenith’s e-learning solution at manufacturing
specific vertical market for its technology. The     sites in the US and Europe.
trip was a very useful one, says Cremin: “We               Since 2006, Zenith’s presence in the US
moved away from being technology-focused to          market has grown steadily. The new office on
having a product.”                                   the west coast adds to existing facilities in
      Enterprise Ireland also arranged a strategy    Framingham just outside Boston, Philadelphia
session in the US, attended by sector specialists    and north Carolina.
including a mobile backhaul expert and a                   Zenith has developed an e-learning
consultant in telecoms industry PR.                  solution which is highly customised for specific
      Mingoa envisages its product will be a         manufacturing environments and is designed to
network interface device that is placed on the       train technical personnel at operations facilities
links between telecoms carriers and their large      in any global location.
customers. It will let telecoms providers offer            Brendan O’Regan, Zenith’s founder and CEO,
very detailed service level agreements with their    says many US life sciences firms already use the
customers. This way the operator can make            company’s e-learning offering at their European
guarantees about the delivery of data along the      facilities so it makes “good business sense”
network, while the customer can be assured that      to provide the full complement of services
the service they are paying for is what they get.    to their US operations. “Our recently opened
      While the concept is not new, Cremin says      Framingham office and our new location on the
Mingoa’s team has a background in application-       West Coast place us in a thriving concentration
specific integrated chips (ASIC) and this            of life sciences companies. We’re already
expertise has allowed the company to develop         ramping up quickly in both regions,” reports
its technology at a lower cost than others. He       O’Regan.
                                                                                                            dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
052 Client Knowledge Services

    Market intelligence                                                  ICT/SOFTWARE

    Enterprise Ireland’s Information Centre hosts                        Are Irish Consumers                   US And Global IT Market
                                                                         Embracing Mobile                      Outlook: Q3 2010
    Ireland’s most comprehensive collection of                           Technology?                           Forrester
    business information and is staffed by specialists                   Mintel                                October 2010
    who can aid quick and effective searches. The                        October 2010
                                                                                                               With US economic growth
    team can help clients of Enterprise Ireland find
                                                                         The mobile technology market          falling short of already modest
    information on markets, products, companies,                         has experienced heavy sales           expectations, Forrester has
    technical standards and management.                                  losses across the board as a result   trimmed forecasts for the year
                                                                         of economic recession in Ireland,     to a still-robust 8.1 per cent
                                                                         market saturation and product         IT market growth for the US
    The centre subscribes to a wide range of                             cannibalisation.                      (down from our 9.9 per cent
    databases, including                                                     While the outlook is positive     forecast in July), with 7.4 per
    • datamonitor Profiles                                               for mobile technology in general,     cent growth in 2011. Adding
                                                                         this will be reliant on how well      telecommunications services for
    • Espicom                                                            manufacturers and retailers           the first time in this report, US
    • Frost & Sullivan                                                   adapt, and in particular, use         ICT market growth in 2010 will
    • Mintel                                                             innovation and marketing.             be 5.6 per cent and 6.6 per cent
                                                                         The technologically-mature            in 2011. US computer equipment
                                                                         consumer now uses mobile              is set to pop by 19 per cent in
    Here is just a sample of the types of research                       technology in very different          2010, while software purchases
    and reports to which the centre has access.                          ways, and this is continuing to       will rise by 9.1 per cent.
                                                                         evolve.                               Communications equipment
                                                                                                               purchases will go up by 5.5 per
                                                                         Sizing and Forecasting the            cent but IT services growth will
                                                                         UK Plastic Card Market                lag.
                                                                         October 2010                          Security and the Cloud:
                                                                                                               Looking at the Opportunity
                                                                         The UK plastic card market            Beyond the Obstacle
                                                                         has not just grown rapidly            Forrester
                                                                         in recent years, it is also           October 2010
                                                                         continually evolving in terms
                                                                         of the performance of different       Security concerns are the most
                                                                         types of payment cards and is         prominent reasons organisations
                                                                         very susceptible to shifts in         cite for not adopting cloud
                                                                         consumer behaviour and the            services. Therefore, creating
                                                                         wider economic environment.           more comprehensive security
                                                                         This brief provides up-to-date        capabilities is a prerequisite.
                                                                         information and analysis on           Forrester expects highly secure
                                                                         the size and composition of the       and trusted cloud services to
                                                                         market, as well as forecasts of       emerge over the next five years,
                                                                         how the market will develop           during which time cloud security
                                                                         to 2014. It covers credit, debit,     will grow into a $1.5 billion
                                                                         charge and private label store        market and will shift from
                                                                         cards This edition also includes      being an inhibitor to an enabler
                                                                         Datamonitor’s assessment of the       of cloud services adoption.
    Enterprise Ireland clients may obtain market research
                                                                         impact of the recession and its       Secure cloud services will be a
    information from the Information Centre, free of charge, by a
    simple phone call or email. Alternatively, clients can visit the     after-effects on the UK payment       disruptive force in the security
    centre or regional offices, by appointment, to view publications     card market.                          solutions market, challenging
    such as those listed above.                                                                                traditional providers to revamp
       To set up an appointment, contact the Information Desk on                                               their architectures, partner
    01 727 2324. Please note that access to the material summarised                                            ecosystems, and service offerings,
    on this page is covered by copyright restrictions. Reports may not                                         while creating an opportunity for
    be loaned or sent out to client companies. Further details about
                                                                                                               emerging vendors, integrators,
    the Information Centre are available on www.enterpriseireland.
                                                                                                               and consultants.

The Future of Premium,                The Future of Sustainable           2011 Trends to Watch:                European Markets for
Ethical and Healthy                   Food and Beverage                   Energy & Sustainability              Percutaneous Transluminal
Snacks: The factors                   Packaging                           Technology                           Coronary Angioplasty and
shaping innovation and key            Putting packaging at the            Ovum                                 Coronary Stenting Products
manufacturer opportunities            forefront of ethical and            October 2010                         Medtech Insight
Business Insights                     environmental initiatives                                                August 2010
October 2010                          Datamonitor                         While slow in comparison
                                      October 2010                        with some other industries, the      Coronary heart disease is
This report examines the                                                  pace of change in utilities is       responsible for more than
growth of the savoury snacks          This report outlines why and        increasing rapidly. This research    1.9 million deaths in Europe
market with forecasts to 2014.        to what extent sustainable          will help you gain insight into      each year and around 800,000
New product development is            packaging matters to consumers.     the business trends that Ovum        PTCA and/or coronary stenting
being driven by the growing           With sustainability an ever-        believes will characterise the       procedures were performed in
sophistication of consumer            more integral part of product       utilities sector in 2011 and         Europe last year. It is expected
demand and increasing                 innovation and marketing            will help you understand the         that sales of PTCA and coronary
competitive pressures. New            strategy, it must be woven into     technology enablers that will        stenting products will increase
product development is analysed       packaging decisions accordingly.    help utilities achieve their         at 5.1 per cent CAGR to 2014.
by region and category and            The report highlights key           operational objectives. The key      This report includes analyses of
emerging trends are illustrated,      actionable ideas and highlights     questions answered are: what         products, current and forecast
thereby enabling manufacturers        industry structure via a            will utilities need to do in order   markets, competitors, and
to identify growth opportunities.     combination of 84 tables and        to remain competitive in 2011        opportunities for suppliers of
                                      figures.                            and beyond, and what major           PTCA and coronary stenting
Next Generation Energy                                                    issues are on the agenda for         products in Europe.
Food and Drinks: Success              European Retail Briefing            utility CIOs.
strategies for consumer               Mintel                                                                   World’s Top Global Mega
targeting, natural and                October 2010                        Energy Efficient Buildings           Trends to 2020 and
sustained release energy                                                  of the Future: How Smart             Implications to Business,
Business Insights                     The latest retail sales data        Technologies and Renewable           Society and Cultures
October 2010                          available for Europe’s top          Energy Sources Will Make             Frost & Sullivan
                                      markets paints a picture of a       the Difference                       October 2010
Consumer needs for an ever-           protracted economic recovery,       Frost & Sullivan
greater ability to work and play is   and of low consumer confidence      September 2010                       This research captures the global
increasing demand for an energy       as a reaction to the onset of                                            pertinent forces of the future
fix in the form of foods and          austerity measures. Keep            Although the recession had a         – including urbanisation, social,
beverages. However, with work         current with changes in the         positive impact on the world’s       economy, technology, energy,
stress and fatigue increasing and     European market and track           energy demand, buildings are         e-mobility, infrastructure,
the demand for products with          economic activity across the        still using too much energy and      business, health and wellness,
a broader health appeal will          Eurozone. Despite its solid         using it inefficiently. Buildings    smart factory and industry-
likely lead energy replacement        economic position, Germany          must become greener and              specific trends – that impact on
products additional functional        looks in danger of slipping into    smarter to lower the global          business, society, cultures and
benefits. This is in contrast to      a familiar habit of reticence       energy demand and reach              personal lives. It is important to
the current appeal of energy          to spend, improvement in            CO2 reduction targets. After         continuously track these mega
products which are limited to         France will likely be short-lived   overcoming the main barriers,        trends to gain a strategic vision
a penetration within the 18-30        given the reaction to austerity     today’s green buildings will         and to capitalise on emerging
year age group. This shift in         measures while performance in       become smart by using digital        opportunities and to understand
marketing to ‘energy’ products        the Netherlands underlines the      technology and advance               needs of the future customer.
plus other benefits will bring        shaky confidence that remains.      materials.
about an evolution within the         Retail sales growth in the UK is
energy market and new food and        slowing while Spain and Italy
beverage categories.                  will take some time to recover.

                                                                                                                dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
054 Regulatory Briefing

    Trade regulations, information                                    EU sets trade policy agenda
                                                                      for next five years
                                                                                                           have been effective since October
                                                                                                           27, 2010, include additional
    and negotiations                                                                                       sanctions on trade in dual-use

    The Market’s update on new trade regulations                      I  n a discussion paper published
                                                                         this November, the European
                                                                      Commission has laid out its
                                                                                                           goods and technology that may
                                                                                                           be used for internal repression
                                                                                                           as well as equipment and
    and customs compliance issues.                                    blueprint for an EU trade policy     technology for the Iranian oil
                                                                      up to the year 2015. The ‘Trade,     and gas industry.
                                                                      Growth and World Affairs’
                                                                      proposes a strategy to reduce        New resource for European
                                                                      trade barriers, to open global       SMEs targeting China
                                                                      markets and to get a fair deal for
                                                                      European businesses.
                                                                      Specifically, it proposes to:
                                                                      – complete its negotiating
                                                                                                           T    he Centre for European
                                                                                                                Union Small and Medium
                                                                                                           Enterprises (EU SME Centre)
                                                                        agenda at the WTO and              was opened in Beijing this
                                                                        with major trading partners        November. Funded by the
                                                                        such as India and Mercosur.        European Commission, the new
                                                                        Completing this agenda would       centre will provide information
                                                                        increase European GDP by           on topics such as the procedures
                                                                        more than one per cent per         for company registrations in
                                                                        year                               China, employment contracts for
                                                                      – deepen trade relations with        recruiting locally and the process
                                                                        other strategic partners, such     for certifying technical standards.
                                                                        as the US, China, Russia and       It will also offer advice, training
                                                                        Japan, where the main focus        and matchmaking opportunities
                                                                        will be on tackling non-tariff     for European SMEs wishing to
                                                                        barriers to trade;                 export to or invest in the Chinese
                                                                      – help European businesses           market. The centre will be fully
                                                                        access global markets by           operational by January 2011.
                                                                        setting up a mechanism to
                                                                        redress the balance between        2011 version of the Combined
                                                                        open markets in the EU             Nomenclature published
                                                                        (for example, in public
                                                                        procurement) and more closed
                                                                      – start negotiating
                                                                                                           T   he European Commission
                                                                                                               has published the latest
                                                                                                           version of the Combined
                                                                        comprehensive investment           Nomenclature (CN), applicable
                                                                        provisions with key trading        from January 1, 2011.
                                                                        partners                           The Combined Nomenclature
                                                                      – make sure trade is fair, and       forms the basis for the
                                                                        the EU’s rights are properly       declaration of goods at
                                                                        enforced                           importation or exportation and
                                                                      – ensure trade remains inclusive     which rate of customs duty
                                                                        so that the benefits go to the     applies as well as how goods are
                                                                        many, not the few.                 treated for intra-Community
                                                                                                           trade statistics.
                                                                      EU announces expanded                   The code is updated every
                                                                      sanctions against Iran               year and is published as a
                                                                                                           Commission Regulation in the

                                                                      T    his October, the Council
                                                                           of the European Union
                                                                      announced a fourth round of
                                                                                                           Official Journal of the European
                                                                                                           Union, L Series. The latest
                                                                                                           version is now available as
                                                                      restrictive measures against Iran,   Commission Regulation (EC) No
                                                                      following similar moves earlier      861/2010 in EU Official Journal
                                                                      this year by the United Nations      L 284 of 29 October 2010. This
    Information on export duties and regulation is available in the   and the United States.               version applies from 1 January
    ‘Export’ section of Enterprise Ireland’s website.                     The new EU measures, which       2011.

Mandatory procedures for              Protectionist trade barriers          EU and South Korea sign free        New China Customs
all EU imports and exports            on the rise                           trade deal                          Regulations for Inbound and
become effective in January                                                                                     Outbound Personal Effects
                                      A    new report published by
                                           the European Commission          T    he EU and South Korea
                                                                                 have signed a Free Trade
                                                                                                                T    he General Administration

A     s of next year, all 27 EU
      countries will be required to
fully implement the safety and
                                      shows that more than 330 trade
                                      restrictive measures have been
                                      taken by the EU’s major trade
                                                                            Agreement (FTA) in a move
                                                                            described as the most ambitious
                                                                            trade agreement ever negotiated
                                                                                                                     of China Customs has
                                                                                                                released a new notice (No. 43),
                                                                                                                with the objective of more
security regulations previously       partners since the outbreak of the    by the EU and the first with an     closely monitoring all inbound
made mandatory by the EU              financial and economic crisis in      Asian country.                      and outbound personal postal
Commission in 2005.                   2008.                                     The agreement will remove       items.
As a result of the mandatory              The report covers 30 of the       virtually all import duties         Under the regulations, the
requirements:                         EU’s trading partners over the        between the two economies as        previous preferential duties
– pre-arrival and pre-departure       two-year period from October          well as many non-tariff barriers.   liable to be paid for personal
  declarations will have to be        2008 to September 2010. The           It will relieve EU exporters        items imported into or shipped
  submitted to customs before         measures found range from             of industrial and agricultural      from China are to be replaced by
  the arrival or departure of         classical trade barriers such as      goods to South Korea from           new clauses:
  goods                               import bans or tariff increases to    paying tariffs. The FTA will also   – all items previously subject to
– paper-based communications          ‘buy national’ and other behind-      create new market access in           duty of RMB50 or less will be
  will no longer be accepted by       the-border policies.                  services and investment and will      exempt from the payment of
  customs for the submission of       Among the countries investigated,     make major advances in areas          such duty
  such information                    Russia was confirmed as the           such as intellectual property,      – the declared value limit for
– a single, common electronic         trading partner with the most         procurement, competition              all such shipments sent to or
  means of communicating              trade-restrictive measures taken      policy and trade and sustainable      from Taiwan will be reduced
  data to and between customs         since the start of the crisis. This   development.                          from the previous ceiling of
  authorities has been                trend was further compounded              One study estimates that          RMB1,000 to RMB800
  established – for imports           by recent policy initiatives with a   the deal will create new trade      – the declared value limit for
  according to the terms of the       strong import substitution angle.     in goods and services worth           each personal postal item sent
  Import Control System (ICS),        Furthermore, the ‘Buy National’       €19.1 billion for the EU; another     to or from other countries and
  and for exports according to the    policy continues to give rise to      calculates that it will more than     regions will be RMB1,000.
  Export Control System (ECS)         concern with new measures taken       double the bilateral EU-South
– pre-arrival and pre-departure       by Brazil, adding to the already      Korea trade in the next 20 years.   Information on export duties
  submissions will have to            very considerable body of existing                                        and regulation is available in
  be submitted to customs             measures.                             Enterprise Europe Network           the ‘Export’ section of Enterprise
  according to set timetables             Separately, the European          extends its reach into Asia         Ireland’s website.
  which vary depending upon
  the mode of transport used and
  the transit time concerned
                                      Commission has published an
                                      online guide to help EU exporters
                                      affected by trade defence
                                                                            T    he Enterprise Europe
                                                                                 Network has opened 15
                                                                            contact points in China and
– subject to some exceptions,         investigations initiated by non-EU    South Korea. The network
  pre-declarations will be            countries.                            offers practical support and
  required for all shipments with                                           advice to more than two million
  a value over €22.                   EU seeks views on trade               European small businesses,
                                      relations with Malaysia               helping them to make the most
                                                                            of international opportunities

                                      I n a new survey, the European
                                        Commission intends to
                                      gather views from interested
                                                                            and start exporting. See www.
                                      stakeholders on the future of
                                      the EU’s trade relationship with
                                      Malaysia, particularly in terms of
                                      market access for EU companies.
                                      The results of this consultation
                                      will feed into the Commission’s
                                      position in international
                                         To participate in the survey,

                                                                                                                 dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
056 Good Reading

    the cost
    to be the

    Managing a                                    AD bosses can                                                       courteous and intelligent style.
                                                  ruin a company.                                                     Sutton’s first book, The No Asshole
    company isn’t just                            Whether they set                                         primary    Rule came out of an essay in the
    about delivering                              people against each                                  reason that    Harvard Business Review, in
    products or hitting                  other, fail to keep their                              56 per cent of        which he wrote about the theme
                                         promises, foster conflict,                      employees are ‘checked-      first expressed when Stanford
    revenue targets;                     set impossible goals or bully            out’ and ‘sleepwalking              considered hiring a famous
    resolving conflict                   staff, they are poison to profits     through their days’,” he writes.       researcher: “I don’t care if that
                                         and death to a good working                                                  guy won the Nobel Prize... I just
    goes with the job…                   atmosphere. Stanford University
                                                                                   However, Sutton is a believer
                                                                                                                      don’t want him ruining our
                                                                               in creative conflict, citing
    unless the boss is                   Professor of Management Science       director Brad Bird, “a vigorous        group.”
    the source of the                    Robert Sutton specialises in how      practitioner of creative abrasion’,        After the article, the magazine
                                         to be the best boss you can. In his   who deliberately chose a team of       got a flood of mail – from a
    problem. Lucille                     new book Good Boss, Bad Boss, he                                             roofing company manager
                                                                               black sheep to make animation
    Redmond reviews                      writes: “Gallup’s surveys [over 30    studio Pixar’s hit film The            inspired to do something about
    books on defusing                    years] of over 100,000 employees      Incredibles. “I want the ones          an abusive employee, from an
                                         in more than 2,500 diverse            who have another way of doing          Italian journalist, a Spanish
    office tension and                   businesses show that ‘managers        things that nobody’s listening         management consultant,
    why bad managers                     trump companies’. Employees’          to. Give us all the guys who are       accountants, diplomats, hotel
    are bad for                          immediate bosses have far more        probably headed out the door.”         and museum managers, even a
                                         impact on engagement and              The Incredibles team clashed           researcher at the US Supreme
    business.                            performance than whether their        constantly – and constructively        Court.
                                         companies are rated as great or       – but Sutton writes: “good fights          The book that followed, The
                                         lousy places to work.”                don’t happen without hard-won          No Asshole Rule, is an anatomy
                                             Sutton quotes a devastating       trust”.                                of workplace poisoners – the
                                         2007 Gallup survey in which 24            In an era when reality TV          techniques these people use
                                         per cent of employees said they       includes revered business icons        to demean and belittle people
                                         would ‘fire their boss’ if they had   telling their eager disciples          – with the answering strategy
                                         the chance. “Gallup concludes         “You’re fired” in front of millions,   that is the antidote to that
                                         that crummy bosses are a              we’re short of mentors with a          poison.

    The poisoner’s techniques,      consultancy The Working Circle
Sutton writes, include treating
people as if they are invisible,
                                    trains people and organisations
                                    in resolving and using conflict.     Conflict
sarcastic jokes and teasing,
uninvited physical contact,
status slaps, rude interruptions
                                        Katz’s book is particularly
                                    useful for people in senior
                                    management. She uses standard
and so on – targeted at people of   conflict resolution methods
lower status, while the poisoner    for her model for solving
cosies up to bosses.                workplace conflicts – asking a
    Sutton names specific           series of questions, starting with
examples, like the Hollywood        outlining when the situation
producer who rang an assistant      began, who is involved, how
at 6.30am to tell her to remind     others are affected, and who
him to send flowers for Anjelica    needs to be involved in the
Huston’s birthday – then            solution.
reamed the assistant at 11am for        She uses a series of questions
forgetting to remind him (her       to find out the shape of a
last sight of him was through his   problem, starting with what
slowly closing door, his finger     is and isn’t negotiable. For
flipping her off). This producer,   instance, in a conflict of two
writes Sutton, went through         competing partners, access to
some 250 PAs in five years. “The    clients might be negotiable,
difference between how a person     while allowing someone else to
treats the powerless versus the     take credit for your work might
powerful is as good a measure of    not.
human character as I know,” he          Working with clients, she
writes.                             tells them to use their own
    In one heartwarming story,      experience, even going back
Sutton tells of how a particular    to childhood, for clues on how
bully’s actions were costed         to solve a current problem. (A
at $160,000 – including time        former army man trying to
spent by his bosses, company
lawyers and HR professionals,
recruitment costs for a new
                                    work with a shouting colleague
                                    remembered solving a racial
                                    conflict where two soldiers
                                                                         a   NGRY people make bad
                                                                             colleagues. Someone who
                                                                         feels like giving the boss or
                                                                                                            psychologists Gillian Bloxham
                                                                                                            and W Doyle Gentry’s Anger
                                                                                                            Management for Dummies.
secretary, overtime caused by his   were shouting into each other’s      the supplier a smack in the        The former is a classic, first
last-minute demands and anger       faces by silently putting his face   gob isn’t working well – the       published in the Nineties but
management training. The story      in between them; a would-be          anger is leeching away their       still selling. It is written for true
is heartwarming because of what     whistleblower remembered             concentration and creativity.      rageaholics: the kind of people
the company did – it deducted       quietly solving a theft problem          In the recession, external     who are thrown into a fury by a
60 per cent of the cost from        during schooldays.)                  stress is high. An irritant that   misplaced apostrophe and can’t
the enraged bully’s end-of-year         Katz shows how to use this       would have been brushed off        bear to be passed out on the
bonus.                              laying-out of a problem to make a    in better times can turn into a    motorway.
    The No Asshole Rule is a book   game plan and route-test it to see   major problem when it is added         Bloxham and Gentry’s book
for individuals, not managers       what the changes will be – and       to mortgage worries, reduced       is a general one, but has an
– but it’s worth reading if         whether they will actually be        income from other family           excellent chapter on anger at
you’re a manager interested         positive.                            members losing their jobs, and     work. They identify behaviour
in psychology too. Good Boss,           Both Katz and Sutton use         higher taxes and expenses.         that can stem from anger:
Bad Boss should be on every         a wealth of examples to show         A good boss needs to be able       slacking, lateness, over-long
manager’s bookshelf, and is a       how conflict can be creatively       to cool angry staff, and to use    breaks, making a big deal of
worthwhile Christmas present        resolved, with rich results for      conflict management to solve       others’ mistakes.
for line managers.                  companies. For any manager           problems that are interfering          Knowing that these come
    Organisational psychologist     dealing with conflict – and any      with a good worker’s ability to    from anger is a great help. It
Diane Katz’s Win at Work is         manager who wants to be a            contribute.                        means managers can look at
a manual on how to build            better boss – these three books          Two of the classics of         the root cause, and may be able
collaborative relationships. Her    are a good place to start.           conflict management are            to take away the reason for the
                                                                         Ronald Potter-Efron’s Angry All    slacking – and turn an angry,
         Good Boss, Bad Boss by Robert I Sutton, Piatkus
                                                                         the Time, written to help men      unproductive staffer into a
         The No Asshole Rule by Robert I Sutton, Piatkus
                                                                         who are anger addicts, and the     happy and productive one.
               Win at Work! by diane L Katz, Wiley
                                                                                                             dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
058 Travel News
                                                                                               Aer Lingus adds Shannon to
                                                                                               Paris route
                                                                                               Aer Lingus is to begin a new service from
                                                                                               Shannon Airport to Charles de Gaulle
                                                                                               airport in Paris on december 17, operating
                                                                                               the service three times a week. Aer Lingus
                                                                                               now has eight routes from Shannon,
                                                                                               including its regional services.
                                                                                                   From Charles de Gaulle airport,
                                                                                               travellers have onward connectivity to more
                                                                                               than 200 destinations.
                                                                                                   Ryanair recently announced that it was
                                                                                               closing its Shannon to Paris Beauvais route
                                                                                               from november 1. The airline also said it
                                                                                               would cut 30 per cent of its flights at its
                                                                                               Frankfurt Hahn base in Germany by next
                                                                                               summer, closing nine routes and reducing
                                                                                               frequency on 15 others.

                                                                                               Dublin firm goes across the pond for
                                                                                               Facebook tourism project
                                                                                               dublin-based social technology developer
                                                                                               Betapond is behind VisitBritain’s new
                                                                                               Facebook Places site – a ‘global guest

     Passengers want to                                                                        book’ that’s said to be the first platform to
                                                                                               promote a whole country. Phase one of the

     help themselves                                                                           scheme includes a leaderboard of the UK’s
                                                                                               most popular attractions, ranked by the

            major worldwide survey has            as baggage fees or meals; printing bag       number of check-ins on Facebook Places.
            indicated significant demand for      tags; self-transfer and claiming delayed     International tourists can use it to share
            extending self-service features to    baggage. Actual usage rates of online        experiences and recommend attractions.
     other parts of airport services, as more     check-in are now at 61 per cent and kiosk
     travellers become familiar with the          check-in is at 71 per cent, showing that     United and Continental close merger
     technology at airports.                      most passengers are experienced in using
                                                                                               Continental Airlines and United Air Lines
         The fifth annual SITA/Air Transport      both.
     World Passenger Self-Service Survey              Mobile phone check-in was raised as
                                                                                               have merged to form United Continental
     is an in-depth look at the attitudes         an issue and 58 per cent of passengers       Holdings, making it the world’s largest
     and habits of more than 2,400 people         are interested in using it. However on       airline. The companies will initially operate
     – a representative sample of the 287.6       the day of the survey just three per cent    independently before a more unified service
     million passengers who use seven             of those polled had used this facility       emerges, which is expected to begin next
     leading international airports.              – the same as the year previously – but      spring.
         Online booking and check-in are close    the percentage who stated they had used
     to their full potential, the survey found.   mobile phone check-in in the past grew
                                                                                               CarTrawler wins award
     Almost three quarters of people polled       to 23 per cent.
     said they go online when they have to            Close to half of the survey              Irish company CarTrawler, which provides
     book a flight for themselves. Now, people    respondents who checked in at a desk         multi-supplier car rental to the travel
     are looking elsewhere for ways to help       rather than online or through a kiosk,       industry, won the award for Best Ancillary
     their journey, with 70 per cent in favour    did so because of the need to check in a     Revenue Innovation at the fourth annual
     of automated security controls and           bag. About 70 per cent of interviewed        Budgies Low Cost Airline Awards ceremony
     automatic boarding gates.                    passengers would tag their own bag if        in London. More than 300 senior airline
         Two-thirds of survey respondents         they could and about 75 per cent would
                                                                                               representatives gathered for the Awards,
     said they would use kiosks for other         be interested in off-airport bag drop-off;
                                                                                               which formed a highlight of the World Low
     purposes including booking or changing       only one third would be willing to pay
     a flight; buying additional services such    for such a service.                          Cost Airlines Congress.


CITY GUIDE                                                                                                 EAT
                                                                                                           Lunch: Located one block away
                                                                                                           from the smart, sophisticated
                                                                                                           Rua Augusta, Arabia is a modern
                                                                                                           eatery that caters for tastes
                                                                                                           veering towards the – surprise,
                                                                                                           surprise – Middle East. Rua
                                                                                                           Haddock Lobo 1397, Jardim
                                                                                                           Paulista, Jardins; www.arabia.

                                                                                                           Dinner: Capim Santo is famous
                                                                                                           in South America for its seafood.
                                                                                                           This restaurant has an added
                                                                                                           bonus in that it boasts a beautiful
                                                                                                           outdoor setting in a garden
                                                                                                           bedecked with mango trees. Try
                                                                                                           their stew of prawns in coconut
                                                                                                           milk in the full realisation that
                                                                                                           you’ll never taste anything like
                                                                                                           it again! Rua Ministro Rocha
                                                                                                           Azevedo 471, Cerqueira Cesar,

                                                                                                           THREE THINGS TO DO IF
                                                                                                           YOU HAVE A FEW HOURS TO
SAO PAULO                                                                                                  Relaxing: The major urban park
                                                                                                           of the city, Ibirapuera Park, is
By Tony Clayton-Lea                                                                                        renowned for being able to take
                                                                                                           the stress levels down a notch
Almost every major industry (and more minor ones than you can count,                                       or three. Its even more peaceful
probably) in Brazil is based in Sao Paulo, so don’t be surprised to be enveloped                           Japanese garden is well worth
by conferences, trade meetings and expositions. The city, the world’s third                                a visit for that strategic pre-
largest, is affectionately called the “Brazilian locomotive” because it drives                             meeting think. Avenue Pedro
the national economy, generating 15 per cent of its GNP. With a population                                 Alvares Cabral.

of over 10 million, you can be assured of a city that is in turn cosmopolitan,
                                                                                                           Gallery: Known locally as
vibrant, multi-culturally aware, and quite often – particularly for the first-time                         MASP (Museu de Arte de Sao
visitor – overwhelming. Its South American rival, Rio de Janeiro, might be                                 Paulo), this boasts one of Latin
more noted for its breathtaking natural beauty, but ask anyone who has come                                America’s most important
here and they’ll tell you this city is all about the people and their relentless                           collections of European
energy. When you leave here, you’ll need a holiday to recover!                                             Impressionism. The best day to
                                                                                                           visit is Sunday, when a weekly
FROM THE AIRPORT                    from each airport varies, so       city’s best restaurants, bars,      Arts & Antiques Fair is held
TO THE CITY                         you’d be well advised to check     galleries, museums and shops.       – ideal for picking up something
There are three airports that       with your hotel on its own door-   Rooms from €220; www.               different. Avenue Paulista 1578.
service Sao Paulo: Congohas         to-door service.         
(less than 15km to the city), Sao                                                                          Culture: You might wish to
Paulo-Guarulhos International       SLEEP                              2nd Choice: Maksoud Plaza           head off somewhere after your
(30km approx…) and Viracopos        1st Choice: L’Hotel Porto Bay,     Hotel, Alameda Campinas 150,        meetings, and before your
(100km approx…). The primary        Alameda Campinas 266, is           is in the heart of the city. Its    hotel. If so, make a beeline for
airport for international long      a five-star boutique choice        3.5-star status belies its innate   Lapa, Pompeia and Barra Funda.
haul flights is Sao Paulo-          for business and leisure           comfort factor. The upside is       Located in the west side of the
Guarulhos International.            visitors. It is a mere 50 metres   the room price (from €160); the     city, these are ideal if you’re
Inevitably, the cost of             from Avenida Paulista, and         downside is you have to pay for     chasing exhibitions and culture-
transportation to the city centre   steps away from some of the        Wi-Fi.              vulture things to do.

                                                                                                             dECEMBER/JAnUARY 2011 | THE MARKET
060 The back page

    When                                 i
                                              t’s just perfect. The negotiations are going          Dress codes are deceptive. Brazilians may seem
                                              wonderfully, and you’re about to come to a deal.   casual, but they are the most elegant people on their
                                              Then the foreigner in Brazil makes that gesture    continent. Laid-back glamour, perfect manicures

                                              with the finger and thumb circled – understood     and crisp style are the norm, and large companies
                                         everywhere in the world to mean “OK, great, good”.      and banks can have a more formal style. “But we
                                             Or rather, not everywhere, as it turns out from     tend to look more at the person,” says Ms Buzon. “Is

                                         the embarrassed sniggers – because that gesture is      the person telling the truth? Has the person got a
                                         very close to one that means something pretty rude      hidden agenda? Here, people focus on the eyes more
                                         in Brazil.                                              than on the suit or jacket.”
                                             Brazil is so like home that it can trick us into
    The country of samba,                thinking it really is like home; the casual manners    THE HUMAN TOUCH Brazilians are tactile. “We
                                         that cover a strict hierarchy, the preference for      will be close, will be putting an arm around the
    fiesta and football is
                                         personal relationships, the welcome. But everything    shoulder even though you just met. Anyone not
    less familiar than you               is just a little different, making it absolutely       comfortable with touching will have to learn if they
    think. Lucille Redmond               different for the unwary foreigner.                    want to do business, because it’s part of the culture.”
    spots the cultural                       Take the phrase mas que nada.                                               It is important to be courteous
    differences.                         In the Spanish used in Latin                                                to people on every level – you
                                         America, this means “better than                                            must treat receptionists or
                                         nothing”. But not in Brazil, where                                          factory workers with the same
                                         it means “No way!”                                                          courtesy as you do the managing
                                                                                                                     director, because the intense
                                         LOST IN TRANSLATION                                                         spirituality that underlies the
                                         Language can be tricky. “In some                                            culture informs the sense that all
                                         cases, it has happened that a                                               are equal in spirit.
                                         company used a translator in                                                    Lunching together is at the
                                         Portugal, and then the material                                             core of business, and work is
                                         was not correctly translated. It                                            discussed throughout the meal.
                                         is important that companies be                                              Foreigners are often brought to
                                         aware of the differences,” says           “We will be close,                the barbecue restaurants prized
                                         Renate Buzon, a consultant with           will be putting an                in this country. “The preference
                                         CDI Global Research who works                                               is to do business in a restaurant,
                                         with Enterprise Ireland, the IDA,
                                                                                   arm around the                    because there will be no
                                         Invest Northern Ireland and               shoulder even                     interruptions to answer a phone,
                                         Swiss and local clients in Sao            though you just                   or from somebody wanting a
                                         Paulo.                                                                      cheque to be signed,” says Buzon.
                                                                                   met. Anyone not
                                             This huge country is an                                                     Brazilians often ask others to
                                         ideal place to do business                comfortable with                  their homes, but this does not
                                         – immigration fuels a racing              touching will have                mean a deal is done. “You have
                                         economy that is expected to be            to learn if they want had a meeting during the week
                                         the fifth largest in the world by                                           with a company here in Brazil,
                                         2020. But you have to be aware of
                                                                                   to do business,                   you’re leaving on Sunday or
                                         the culture.                              because it’s part of              Monday, and someone invites you
                                             Only eight per cent of                the culture.”                     to go to their country house, an
                                         Brazilians speak English, for                                               hour or two from Sao Paulo, for a
                                         example, so it is good to have your brochures locally barbecue. The foreigner might think ‘Oh, we will do
                                         translated by a specialist in your area. Even in       business – he’s calling me to his house.’ Wrong! He
                                         sectors such as telecoms, where many people have       just wants to be your friend. The fact that someone
                                         fluent English, Buzon says it is polite to provide     invited you to his country house doesn’t mean the
                                         Brazilian Portuguese translations so technicians       person will do business with you.”
                                         who are not fluent may read and understand                 Phone manners are much the same as in Ireland
                                         comfortably.                                           – except for one thing: Brazilians do not like
                                             Brazil has its own timing – it is difficult to do  conference calls with people they do not already
                                         business from mid-December, as in Europe and           know. “Because we are tactile, and because of
                                         the US, then Carnival fever takes over for most of     language restriction, this is not a good idea as a
                                         the two months to the end of February, or even         first approach,” says Buzon. In Brazil, she adds, “it’s
                                         into March, like next year. “Brazil only moves after   determination and a flexible mind that will make
                                         Carnival. After Carnival, the country will pick up     you develop business here. Come with an open
                                         again and start looking at new projects,” says Buzon. soul, and just learn.”

Enterprise Ireland International Network

Head Office
REGION/OFFICE       TELEPHONE                 FACSIMILE             ADDRESS

Dublin              +(353) 1 727 2000         –                     The Plaza, Eastpoint Business Park, dublin 3, Ireland

northern Europe
Amsterdam           +(31 20) 676 3141         +(31 20) 671 6895     World Trade Centre, Strawinskylaan 861, 1077 xx, Amsterdam, The netherlands
Brussels            +(32 2) 673 9866          +(32 2) 672 1066      Park View, Chausse d’Etterbeek, 1800 Etterbeeksesteenweg, Bruxelles 1040,
                                                                    Brussel, Belgium
Glasgow             +(44 141) 332 3015        +(44 141) 332 0254    10 Claremont Terrace, Glasgow G3 7xR, Scotland
London              +(44 20) 7438 8700        +(44 20) 7438 8749    2nd Floor, Shaftesbury House, 151 Shaftesbury Avenue, London WC2H 8AL, England
Paris               +(33 1) 5343 1200         +(33 1) 4742 8476     33 rue de Miromesnil, 75008 Paris, France
Stockholm           +(46 8) 459 21 60         +(46 8) 661 75 95     Box 5737, Sibyllegatan 49, 114 87 Stockholm, Sweden

Germany, Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans
Budapest            +(36 1) 301 4950          +(36 1) 301 4955      Bank Centre, Szabadság tér 7, Budapest 1054, Hungary
Düsseldorf          +(49 211) 470 590         +(49 211) 470 5932    Rolandstrasse 44, 40476 düsseldorf, Germany
Moscow              +(7495) 937 5943          +(7495) 680 5362      c/o Commercial Section, Embassy of Ireland, Grokholski Pereulok 5, Moscow, Russia
Prague              +(420) 257 199 621        +(420) 257 532 224    Trziste 13, 118 00 Prague 1, Czech Republic
Warsaw              +(48 22) 583 1200         +(48 22) 646 5015     Ulica Mysia 5, 00-496 Warsaw, Poland

Southern Europe, Middle East and Africa
Dubai               +(971 4) 329 8384         +(971 4) 329 8372     4th Floor, number One Sheikh Zayed Road, PO Box 115425 dubai, United Arab Emirates
Madrid              +(34 91) 436 4086         +(34 91) 435 6603     Casa de Irlanda, Paseo de la Castellana 46 – 3, 28046 Madrid, Spain
Milan               +(39 02) 8800991          +(39 02) 8690243      Via S. Maria Segreta 6, 20123 Milan, Italy
Riyadh              +(966 1) 488 1383         +(966 1) 488 1094     c/o Embassy of Ireland, PO Box 94349, Riyadh 11693, Saudi Arabia

The Americas
Boston              +(1 617) 292 3001         +(1 617) 292 3002     50 Milk Street, 20th Floor, Boston, MA 02109, USA
Mexico City         +52 55 52509311           –                     Mariano Escobedo 752, 12th Floor, Col. neuva Anzures, Mexico dF CP 11590
New York            +(1 212) 371 3600         +(1 212) 371 6398     Ireland House, 345 Park Avenue, 17th Floor, new York, nY 10154-0037, USA
Sao Paulo           +(55 11) 28474518         +(55 11) 2847 4550    Avenida Paulista, 2300 - andar Pilotis, Cerqueira Cesar, Sao Paulo, 01310-300, Brazil
Silicon Valley      +(650) 294 4081           –                     800W, El Camino Real, Suite 420, Mountain View, CA 94040, USA
Toronto             +(1 416) 934 5033         +(1 416) 928 6681     2 Bloor Street W, Suite 1501, Toronto, Ontario, M4W 3E2, Canada

Beijing             +(86 10) 8448 8080        +(86 10) 8448 4282    Commercial Section, Embassy of Ireland, C612A Office Building, Beijing Lufthansa Ctr.,
                                                                    no. 50 Liangmaqiao Road, Chaoyang district, Beijing 100125, China
Guangzhou           +(86 20) 8666 2450        +(86 20) 8666 2171    Room 501, Commercial Tower of China Hotel, Liuhua Road, Guangzhou, 510015, China
Hong Kong           +(852) 2845 1118          +(852) 2845 9240      2107 Tower 2 Lippo Center Admiralty, Hong Kong
Kuala Lumpur        +(60 3) 2164 0616         +(60 3) 2164 0619     Ireland House, 5th Floor South Block, The Amp Walk, 218 Jalan Ampang,
                    +(60 3) 2164 0618                               50450 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
New Delhi           +(91 11) 424 03 178       +(91 11) 424 03 177   Commercial Section, Embassy of Ireland, 230 Jor Bagh, new delhi 110 003, India
Seoul               +(82 2) 755 4767 8        +(82 2) 757 3969      Ireland House, 13th Floor Leema B/d, 146-1 Susong-dong,
                                                                    Jongro-Ku, Seoul 110-755, Korea
Shanghai            +(86 21) 6279 7088        +(86 21) 6279 7066    Commercial Section, Consulate General of Ireland, Suite 700A,
                                                                    Shanghai Centre, 1376 najing Road West, Shanghai 200040, China
Singapore           +(65) 6733 2180           +(65) 6733 0291       Ireland House, 541 Orchard Road #08-00, Liat Towers, Singapore 238881
Sydney              +(61 2) 927 38505         +(61 2) 926 49589     Level 26, 1 Market Street, Sydney 2000, nSW, Australia
Tokyo               +(81 3) 3263 0611         +(81 3) 3263 0614     Ireland House, 2-10-7 Kojimachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, 102-0083, Japan

Market development Telephone +(353) 1 727 2000
Albania                                  Egypt                      Latvia                        Malta
Bosnia Herzgovina                        Estonia                    Lebanon                       Mexico
Greece                                   Lithuania                  Serbia                        Montenegro
Cyprus                                   Israel                     Macedonia                     Syria

For any other markets not mentioned, contact Market Development Dublin.
For further contact information, visit

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