The award-winning Going for Growth programme commenced its 14th cycle in November 2021 and is currently seeking applications from growth-focused female entrepreneurs across all sectors.

Going for Growth, an award-winning business development programme, is supported by KPMG and Enterprise Ireland and assists ambitious female entrepreneurs in achieving their growth aspirations. More than 800 female entrepreneurs have completed the programme to date.

Participants on an award-winning development programme for ambitious female entrepreneurs reported strong growth over the last year despite the challenges posed by Covid-19.

Those taking part in the 13th cycle of Going for Growth showed total revenues growing over the cycle, additional employment being created and the number of exporters increasing while trading through the pandemic.   

Pictured above at the launch of the 14th cycle of the Going for Growth programme are left to right: Olivia Lynch, Partner KPMG,  Jeananne O’Brien, Artizan Food Co., Leo Clancy, CEO Enterprise Ireland  and Dr. Anne Cusack, formally Critical Healthcare.

The results of this year’s programme speak to the remarkable resilience of these women in the most challenging of market circumstances. Women in Ireland continue to be underrepresented amongst our entrepreneurship community, but with the right support, have the potential to contribute significantly more to our economy.

Olivia Lynch
Partner
KPMG in Ireland

The vital support of Lead Entrepreneurs

Those selected for the Going for Growth initiative join interactive round table sessions led by Lead Entrepreneurs. The Lead Entrepreneurs are successful businesswomen with personal experience of growing a business. These high-profile business leaders volunteer their time to encourage participants to set and achieve personalised goals and milestones to address the opportunities and challenges they face in driving growth in their businesses.

Some of this year’s Lead Entrepreneurs include five previous Going for Growth participants: Dr. Anne Cusack, formerly Critical Healthcare; Chupi Sweetman-Durney, Chupi; Gillian O’Dowd, Azon Recruitment Group, Jeananne O’Brien, Artizan Food Co. and Oonagh O’Hagan, Meaghers Pharmacy Group.

The other Lead Entrepreneurs include Fidelma McGuirk, Payslip and Monica Flood, formerly Olas IT.

Áine Denn, co-founder and formerly of Altify, and Breege O’Donoghue, formally of Primark, will lead Continuing the Momentum round tables. This is a further development programme for former participants of Going for Growth.

How Artizan Food Co benefited from Going for Growth

One female entrepreneur who participated in the last cycle is Jeananne O’Brien, Founder & Director of Artizan Food Co, which since being founded in 2005 has developed from a small gourmet sandwich shop into a boutique catering company which provides a full service offering to the corporate and private sector.

Jeananne O’Brien said: “Going for Growth is a fantastic opportunity to work with amazing Lead Entrepreneurs who give their time, energy and support so generously. The programme forces you to take time out and focus on your business, look at key areas and plan out goals. Going for Growth gives you the opportunity to be exposed to some of the most incredible woman and your group provides support and insight which was particularly important as we tried to navigate the challenges of COVID-19”.

Pictured at the launch are: Leo Clancy, CEO Enterprise Ireland,  Anne Cusack, formally Critical Healthcare, Jeananne O’Brien, Artizan Food Co. and Olivia Lynch, Partner KPMG.

Pictured at the launch are: Leo Clancy, CEO Enterprise Ireland, Anne Cusack, formally Critical Healthcare, Jeananne O’Brien, Artizan Food Co. and Olivia Lynch, Partner KPMG.

Why Going for Growth matters

Commenting on the launch of the new cycle of Going for Growth Olivia Lynch, Partner KPMG said: “The results of this year’s programme speak to the remarkable resilience of these women in the most challenging of market circumstances.

“Women in Ireland continue to be underrepresented amongst our entrepreneurship community, but with the right support, have the potential to contribute significantly more to our economy. The many programme participants who have adapted their businesses to become first time exporters and create new jobs are proof of this potential.

“We look forward to continuing our strong support of the Going for Growth programme and sharing our expertise with the next group of ambitious women looking to take their businesses to the next level.”

According to Leo Clancy, CEO of Enterprise Ireland; “Increasing support for ambitious female entrepreneurship is a key national priority and Enterprise Ireland is proud to support Going for Growth. Strong peer groups, wonderful Lead Entrepreneurs, excellent formal learning opportunities and frameworks for business growth make this a ‘must consider’ for anyone seeking to accelerate her business.”

Paula Fitzsimons, founder and managing director of Fitzsimons Consulting, says:

 “The achievements of the participants in growing revenue, increasing jobs and beginning exporting during some of the darkest days of the pandemic are a credit to the peer support that they got from each other and from the Lead Entrepreneurs. The way the participants have pivoted, identified new opportunities, and changed to meet the needs of their market, shows great resilience and a true entrepreneurial spirit. The strength of the network, developed over the last 13 years, has proven to be a great resource in the most challenging times, as it is when the environment is more benign.”

Get in touch

For further information on the Going for Growth programme, please contact Olivia Lynch, partner, KPMG.