Irish Franchise Expo and Awards to be held in February

The Irish Franchise Association is to host the Ulster Bank Franchise Association EXPO and Awards at Croke Park, Dublin on Friday 25 and Saturday 26 February 2011. The purpose of the exhibition is to act as a showcase for Irish franchisors and the franchising sector.

The exhibition will take place from 10am to 6pm on Friday and 10am to 4pm on Saturday and will feature guest speakers, seminars on franchising, exhibitors from the franchise sector and extensive information and advice for individuals interested in franchising. It is planned that the Irish Franchise EXPO in 2011 will introduce a new international village concept where international franchisors looking to recruit suitable Master Franchise Owners for Ireland will exhibit.

New workshops will also be introduced and a separate seminar area, as well as private meeting rooms for franchisors and prospective franchise owners to discuss opportunities. Monthly easy payments options are also in place to assist exhibitors, as well as substantial early booking discounts.

The Irish Franchise EXPO is the only franchise exhibition in Ireland that will be fully endorsed by the Irish Franchise Association. Chairman of the Association, David Killeen said: “As with last year’s exhibition, this Expo is being run purely on a not for profit basis and any surplus funds generated will be reinvested back into the franchise sector to assist our voluntary body to deliver on our mission of ‘promoting and developing best practice franchising in Ireland and creating an environment within which franchising can grow’. We strongly appeal to all active franchisors to get firmly behind this initiative and give it their full support. We welcome our continued partnership with Ulster Bank who regularly demonstrate their commitment to the SME sector and in particular the franchise sector through supporting initiatives such as the Franchise Exhibition and Awards.”

Orna Stokes, Senior Manger, Strategic Operations, Ulster Bank said: “The importance of providing support to businesses in the current environment cannot be underestimated. It is our job at Ulster Bank to provide solid advice, appropriate financial support and a robust service to franchises and indeed to all our business customers. We are delighted to continue our relationship with the Irish Franchise Association. The Expo and Awards provide us with a great opportunity to highlight our support in the start-up and franchising sector and also to recognise and reward outstanding entrepreneurs.” Running in conjunction with the exhibition is the Irish Franchise Awards, which recognise excellence in franchising and reward outstanding achievements of businesses and individual in the franchise industry. The Awards will be presented at a formal black-tie awards ceremony in the Hospitality Suite at Croke Park on Friday 25 February 2011.