I’ve ranted quite a bit since I started this blog. I’ve posted lots of things raging against the machine about various governmental and non governmental bodies. In the spirit of fairness I would like to give credit where it is due. I first engaged with Bord Bia when I had a mere business plan. The first time I went to their 1970’s office by the canal in Dublin it made me a bit sad. The buildings architecture is sort of oppressive, it has one of those sad stories where they were just about to move into shiny new offices and the 2008 crash happened… The welcome when I walked in the door was however second to none. The receptionist at Bord Bia HQ is essentially Ireland’s nicest lady. She is charming and chatty in a Late Late Show kind of a way and I have no doubt she was on the ‘Tele’ in the 60’s at some point. After a warm welcome I had a great meeting with the then newly appointed Sector manager for the up and coming drinks industry. It was informative and helpful and she finagled me an invite to the party for the Launch of the Irish Whiskey Association in the Jameson Visitor Center that night. Whilst there I bumped into John Teeling and the rest as they say is history in terms of my whiskey supply etc.
Fast forward a few years into my business plan and I am gearing up for export to the USA by the end of this year. I felt it was time to reconnect with Bord Bia so headed up to Dublin again. The world’s best receptionist was still as bright and cheery as ever but just about everything else had changed for the better. The new consumer research centre called ‘The Thinking House’ had taken over almost the entire first floor. Gone is all the fake veneer wood, 70’s lino and 80’s furnishing and in its place is an airy, well thought out and comfortable event and office space with a research library at its heart.
I cannot speak highly enough about this resource for a start-up business like mine. When I worked in the corporate world research reports were at my finger tips because corporations have budgets for those kinds of things. I am not going to drop $5000 on a report any time soon, but now I don’t have to because, God Bless Them, Bord Bia has every report I could ever want and is happy to share them with me. This resource is invaluable to me as I gear up my plans for export market penetration, particularly now with such economic turmoil and instability and ‘Black Swan’ events rapidly changing the alcohol market landscape.
Even better are their Graduate Programs, which I am availing of. These programs allow me staff up in those markets I am looking to export into. To be frank without that resource I would have a tough time forward planning financially as overheads would eat me alive in the early years. Even better again are the multitude of random opportunities that come my way whether its market visits, Embassy introductions importer conference opportunities etc. etc. . I could go on, but suffice is to say. Bord Bia is playing a crucial role in my business at the moment and I am really grateful for the great work they are doing with the spirits industry and with me.
So Thank You Good Ship Bord Bia and all who sail in you. .