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Conference 2015

IIBN 5th Annual Global Conference

‘Partners by Design’ 

IIBN proudly hosted our 5th Global Annual Conference on Friday 13th November,
at the iconic BAFTA in the heart of London, Piccadilly. Partners by Design explored the
ever-closer relationship between the UK, Ireland & US as well as the importance of design
in achieving business success – from industry to fashion. The conference brought together 250 business leaders and policy makers from the Irish business community in Europe, the US and around the globe, providing unprecedented opportunities to network with some of Ireland’s most successful diaspora.

In case you missed it, here are five key learnings from the conference:

1. Family comes first. John Beckett, founder of Channel Sight, which recently raised €3 million in investment capital and created 40 jobs in Dublin, got more than he bargained for during his 60 second pitch when he received a text from his wife telling him she was in labour. Following his pitch Mr. Beckett was out the door and on the next plane home to be with her.

2. Brexit is a major concern for Irish people, with economist Susan Hayes-Culleton highlighting the very real risks to the Common Travel Area agreements between the two countries and the notion that a ‘hard’ border between the Republic and Northern Ireland.

3. There’s no shortage of tech innovation in Ireland. Of the 30 businesses that pitched, 20 were from the tech space. Some of the bigger start-ups pitching included Scurri, which last week announced a €3bn deal with Fastway Courriers, and Cuisson who provide private gastronomic experiences to some of the world’s biggest brands.

4. The Irish fashion industry is building quite a reputation for itself. Designer Melissa Curry announced a deal with Virgin Atlantic that’ll see her BYOS jewellery collection sold on all flights. While CEO and co-founder of, Jennie McGinn, shared her ambition to be one of the top five online global retailers in the next five years. However, it was flagged that more needs to be done to support Irish designers.

5. Design and innovation are the keys to success. Ronan Dunne, CEO of Telefonica UK (O2), inspired the 300 strong crowd of Irish business owners from around the world to never stop breaking the mould and developing their companies, reminding us that ‘output is finite but the opportunity to invest in new things is infinite.’

Click Here for the Conference Website