Ulster Bank often works with Enterprise Ireland in their efforts to assist Irish companies in the SME sector develop their export business.
We do this in many ways, some recent examples involved speaking at their Funding for Growth seminars, joint hosting of events on doing business is a variety of markets and travelling on Trade Missions with Enterprise Ireland and their clients to key business markets.
Recently Gerry Ennis, Head of Trade Finance at Ulster Bank (pictured here with Minister of State Alan Kelly and Patrick Edmond of Shannon Airport) attended a trade mission to Moscow , organised by Enterprise Ireland and led by the Minister of State Alan Kelly, and he has provided the following report on the trip:
Two trade missions to MoscowTwo trade missions to Moscow took place at the same time (Aviation and Agriculture) and in excess of 40 people travelled from Ireland. Each mission was fully supported by the Irish Embassy in Moscow.
The Irish Aviation / Transportation mission focused on the growing opportunities for Irish companies in that sector. It was interesting to hear that the aviation industry in Ireland is directly responsible for 26,000 jobs with an estimated further 16,000 jobs supported in the aviation supply chain. This sector contributes in excess of €4bn to Ireland's GDP. The second group of companies attended an "Innovation in Agriculture" trade mission , these were companies providing product and services to a very dynamic market in Russia.
Irish exports of goods to Russia for the first eight months of 2013 were €434m , up 8.5% on the same period last year. It is interesting to note that our Imports at €109m for the same period this year is only one quarter of our exports.
Russia is not an easy market to crack, having said that many of the companies on these missions have shown that they can sell their product successfully throughout Russia and also to neighbouring countries such as Belarus, Ukraine and Kazakhstan.
Enterprise IrelandEnterprise Ireland have a fantastic team based in Moscow , led by Gerry McCarthy and ably supported by his colleagues - all of whom were excellent hosts to attendees on the mission. Our Ambassador to Russia, Eoin O'Leary and his team were very involved and supportive of the mission. The Embassy and Enterprise Ireland both have an open door policy when it comes to supporting Irish companies as they seek to develp their business in Russia. Gerry can be seen here in the company of Ambassador O'Leary.
During the trip I attended a dinner hosted by Enterprise Ireland and in excess of 200 people , Irish and Russian were present at a hotel within a stone's throw of the Kremlin. Ambassador O'Leary hosted an evening reception at the Embassy on another evening. At other times I networked with these companies to explore ways in which we could work together. I also visited the main local banks in the company of Natalia from the local RBS office in an effort to promote Ireland but more importantly to promote the bank in Ireland to these major banking giants. RBS employs close to 300 people in Russia, with offices in Moscow, St Petersburg and Sakhalin.
I would be pleased to talk to any of our readers if we can be of any assistance to you as you seek to explore new business opportunities in Russia or for any emerging market in fact. My main contact details are as follows: