Friday, October 26 08:15:03
Edmund Harty of Kerry-based manufacturer Dairymaster was last night named the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 at a gala awards ceremony held in Dublin. Dr Harty, the technical director at Dairymaster, was presented with the title of Entrepreneur of the Year by President Michael D Higgins. Mr Higgins said the commitment, drive and hard work of entrepreneurs will play an important role in the advancement of the Irish economy. "It is people like these finalists, willing to innovate and take big risks, that will help change and rebuild our economy," he added.
Dr Harty beat off competition from fellow finalists Paul Kenny of Dubai-based Cobone.com, and Colm Piercy of Irish telecoms business Digiweb. Earlier in the evening he was named as winner of the International category. He will now go on to represent Ireland at the World Entrepreneur of the Year Awards in Monte Carlo next June. "My dad set up the company in 1968 and I came into it in 1998. This award is a fantastic achievement for myself, my family, the staff and the company itself," Dr Harty said.
Dr Harty, a mechanical engineer by profession, joined the family business in 1998 while studying for a PhD in University College Dublin, where he focused on the area of milking performance. While completing his PhD, he developed a new method for the evaluation of milking units by measuring performance under flow conditions. This research has resulted in the test methods being adopted into the international standards for performance measurement of machine milking, and Dairymaster leads the way in these performance measurements. Headquartered in Causeway, near Tralee in Co Kerry, Dairymaster also has operations in the UK and the US, and employs 220 people. The Irish Times
The Troika of international lenders to Ireland has said the Government will meet its fiscal targets for 2012, but has highlighted a number of "significant risks" and challenges for 2013 that need to be addressed. In a statement issued yesterday upon conclusion of the eighth quarterly review of Ireland's bailout programme, the European Commission, European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund praised "steadfast" progress on policy implementation and acknowledged that Ireland was the best-performing of the bailout programme countries.
However, the troika's concerns included over-runs in the health sector this year, the need for more "vigorous" progress on job-activation, and mortgage arrears, where it said "intensified efforts" were required. For its part, the Government said it was "very confident" that Ireland would exit its bailout programme at the end of next year even if no deal was reached on reducing the historic cost to the State of bank recapitalisation. The Irish Times
Businesses and consumers could face further electricity price rises of up to 9 per cent under a proposal being considered by the State's energy industry watchdog. Electricity suppliers, including ESB subsidiary Electric Ireland, Bord Gais and Airtricity, recently increased their charges to both businesses and consumers, adding between E50 and E60 a year to the average household bill. The Commission for Energy Regulation (CER) is now consulting with power plant operators on a technical issue relating to how they pass on charges for supplies of natural gas that they burn to generate electricity.
According to independent supplier Vayu, the changes being considered could add up to 9 per cent to the cost of electricity during the peak demand months in the winter and about 1 per cent when demand is at its lowest, during the summer. The company's head of regulation, Bryan Hennessy, said yesterday that the increase would hit businesses, particularly industries that employ large numbers of workers, and households if it were applied. The consultation deals specifically with charges for short-term use of the natural gas network. Electricity companies have to book space on this system to ensure the natural gas supplies they need are shipped to them. The space can be booked on a yearly, monthly or daily basis. The daily, or short-term rate, is almost three times the yearly rate and is about twice what companies are charged for booking capacity a month in advance. The Irish Times
Ireland's reliance on domestic demand should be a thing of the past, Irish chief executives believe. A new survey by Enterprise Ireland and Deloitte found that 72pc of Irish CEOs see overseas markets as far more significant to Ireland's economic recovery than the local economy. The survey was carried out on 365 CEOs registered to attend the Ceo Forum in the Convention Centre, Dublin, hosted by Enterprise Ireland and Deloitte.
The survey also identified that only 21pc of business leaders believe that Ireland will return to consistent strong GDP growth in 2013, while 67pc envisage that scenario during 2014. "There is a growing realisation within Irish businesses that even relatively small firms need to be more focused on the opportunities abroad and less on the traditional home market," said Brendan Jennings, Managing Partner, Deloitte.
Frank Ryan, CEO of Enterprise Ireland, added: "The record export sales achieved by Irish companies in recent years clearly show that investing in internationalisation delivers for Irish companies." The vast majority of respondents (92pc) said that they supported the Government's stance on trying to promote greater participation in honours Leaving Cert maths. The Irish Independent