Dragonslayer David eyes up US market
BallyHeigue man secures €30k
A NORTH Kerry-based company has its eyes set on the US market after it secured an investment of €30,000 in an impressive appearance on Dragon's Den on Sunday.
David Monson of Monson Jewellery in Ballyheigue was thrilled with his canvassing of the Dragons which resulted in an investment of €30,000 by recruitment mogul Peter Casey.
"I got the Dragon I was looking for, it was incredible!" David told The Kerryman this week. "We're going to use the investment to expand in the US through marketing."
Monson Jewellery - which makes accessories from wood inspired by Irish and Celtic culture - already employs four workers at its base in Ballinclemessig. With the current investment and future projections, David hopes to employ 12 by five years' time selling to as far as Australia.
"The US already represents the biggest part of our business, with the Irish tourist market as well. We have a whole new range out now and they are also becoming increasingly popular as gifts Irish people are selling abroad."
Demand skyrocketed in the 24 hours following the screening of the programme, with orders coming in from all over the country, as well as the UK.
In his plans for future expansion, David has been inspired by the success story of a nearby company. "Dairymaster is the model for us really, as it produces everything in-house and employs so many people. They are a huge example to us," he said.
Dragon Peter Casey said he was delighted with the new partnership: "I am delighted with the investment. I was impressed with David from the start and his enthusiasm and application struck a chord. We have struck up a good relationship and already I can see the business progressing at a faster rate as we seek out new markets for David's unique range."
The recession hasn't presented too much of a challenge for the company, David said. "As we target the US market a great deal we are operating beyond just this economy so we haven't felt the recession too much. The Irish State has also been very helpful in that I received incredible support and advice from Enterprise Ireland and the Kerry County Enterprise Board."
Log onto www.monsonirishjewellery.com for more information about the range.