06/07/2004

Invest NI aid business start-ups

Invest NI has helped over 100 local start-up companies export their services and products outside of Northern Ireland in 2004 through its ‘Export Start’ programme, the agency revealed today.

Available to new businesses across the region the programme provides business counselling, financial support and access to business information.

Leslie Morrison, Chief Executive of Invest NI, said: “We have helped these companies accelerate their growth by providing the knowledge and capabilities they need to be successful within their own business sectors.

"By providing this information we are helping local firms to exploit new market opportunities and enhance their export potential.”

All of the companies have been working closely with Invest NI’s network of local offices, which have been established to ensure that businesses right across Northern Ireland have access to the right support and advice they need to stay competitive.

Local firm CK International Ltd currently exports approximately 40% of their products within the RoI and UK.

As a recent start-up company the firm has received a wide-range of advice from Invest NI including research and development, marketing, ICT and recruitment support.

Aidan O’Neill, managing director of CK International, said: “Working with Invest NI has given us the confidence and support we need to enhance our export offering. The range of advice we have received, in terms of exploiting new opportunities and market awareness, has allowed us to compete more effectively against rival companies both in the South and in the rest of the UK.”

Based in Dungannon the company is involved in the manufacture and sale of two different products - bailers, which are used to compress large quantities of waste, and mechanical booms used in the quarrying industry.

(MB)

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