Saturday 16 December 2017

Group aims to link small firms with global giants

Green Shoots graduate Siobhan Duggan, who was at the awards presentations. Photo: John Delea.
Green Shoots graduate Siobhan Duggan, who was at the awards presentations. Photo: John Delea.

A LEADING Cork business organisation has announced a new initiative that could see local small and medium sized businesses land lucrative deals with multinationals based in the county.

IBM Global Executive Denis Collins is also chairman of IT@Cork, not-for-profit independent business organisation that represents over 300 member companies, including multinationals. Speaking in Macroom last week, Mr Collins said the group's next initiative will foster relationships between its members and smaller local businesses.

"One of the things that we have talked about, which I don't think we have done enough of, is work with small and medium business. We are going to be announcing within the next week an umbrella programme called Upstart," he said.

"We have eight or nine multinationals signed up already, IBM, EMC, Laya Healthcare, Trend Micro. It's heavy tech but we've also got Moog and maybe Pfizer and a few others on the pharma side, Abtran, Voxpro and we're building that core team up. We are going to call for start-ups to see if we can map and team them.

"The intent will be not just to do the mentoring thing, training on how to do a pitch and all that, which is good, but also can we foster a deal? Can we foster the multinational to purchase something from that small and medium enterprise person? Can we foster a teaming, co-selling solution to market? You're selling sneakers, I need to sell laces, we can go to market with the sneakers together. So we're going to push that, to put a focal point that will cut through some of the procurement BS that you sometimes deal with," he explained.

Mr Collins said the scheme would also see the multinationals give references to the smaller businesses it deals with.

Mr Collins made the comments as the keynote speaker at the graduation ceremony for this year's Greenshoots mentoring programme.


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