Your business week: Halo Business Angel Network, SFA Business Connect 2020

Expert insight on hand from conference in Co Wicklow organised by Enterprise Ireland

Monday, February 3rd

Results: Ryanair, Alphabet, Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Viacom.
Indicators: Euro zone manufacturing PMI (Jan); UK manufacturing PMI (Jan); German manufacturing PMI (Jan); US manufacturing PMI (Jan), construction spending (Dec).

Tuesday, February 4th

Results: Brink's, Ford, Ralph Lauren, Walt Disney, Carlyle Group, New York Times, Trivago.
Indicators: Irish unemployment (Jan); Euro zone PPI (Dec); UK construction PMI (Jan); US economic optimism (Feb), factory orders (Dec).
Meetings: The Portugal Conference for business in the country (Clayton Hotel, Dublin 4); Ibec National Marine Planning Framework Workshop for marine-based industry (Ibec, Lower Baggot Street, Dublin 2); Ireland and the EU after Brexit: A View from the Green Party with Eamon Ryan (Institute of International and European Affairs, North Great George's Street, Dublin 1).

Wednesday, February 5th

Results: Smurfit Kappa Group, Boston Scientific, Merck & Co, Barratt Developments, Redrow, General Motors, News Corp, Expedia, EMC, Motorola Solutions, Spotify.
Indicators: Irish industrial production (Dec); Euro zone services and composite PMI (Jan), retail sales (Dec); UK services and composite PMI (Jan), new car sales (Jan); German services and composite PMI (Jan); US exports and imports (Dec), services and composite PMI (Jan).

Thursday, February 6th

Results: Becton Dickinson, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Kellogg, Philip Morris International, Twitter.
Indicators: German factory orders (Dec), construction PMI (Jan).
Meetings: Small Firms Association (SFA) Business Connect 2020 event (Aviva Stadium, Dublin 4); HBAN All Island Business Angels Conference (Powerscourt Hotel, Co Wicklow); Gradireland Live careers fair (RDS, Dublin 4); Dublin Chamber Sustainable Dublin 2050 Series - Carbon, The Race to Zero (Dublin Chamber, Clare Street, Dublin 2); Regulating Banking Culture Conference (University College Dublin).


It is the dream scenario for many start-ups and the good news is that the role of angel investors looks set to further expand in Ireland this year.

The Halo Business Angel Network (HBAN), an all-island initiative of Enterprise Ireland, InterTradeIreland and Invest Northern Ireland, recently announced it had successfully recruited more than 100 business angel investors last year, outstripping its projected 75.

At its conference on Thursday, the organisation will set out plans to capture 100 more this year.

To put some numbers on exactly how valuable such activity is, HBAN says its members have now invested more than €100 million in start-ups since 2007, and activity is increasing. Average angel investment here is €25,000.

This week’s event will give attendees an insight into how they might capitalise on such opportunity with a series of talks, panel discussions and masterclasses on building portfolios.

Expert insight is also on hand. The conference will hear from John Harbison, chairman emeritus of US-based Tech Coast Angels; technology investor Dr Jim Mountjoy; and Áine Denn, co-founder of Altify.

"The All-Island Conference is all about giving prospective investors the confidence and knowledge to become successful angel investors," said HBAN director John Phelan.

“Of course, everyone wants to achieve as many exits as possible, so this year’s conference will show how the clever use of data can yield better returns for investors and the companies in which they invest.”

SFA Business Connect 2020: There are huge opportunities for small businesses that understand how to navigate larger organisations, the Small Firms Association (SFA) insists.

“And for larger organisations, accessing a pool of local small business suppliers enables rapid innovation for their growth.”

It is a kind of commercial “you scratch my back” scenario at the heart of Thursday’s Business Connect 2020 event organised by the SFA which represents smaller Irish businesses employing less than 50 people. So upward looking cooperation has its clear benefits.

Indeed the event aims to give members a "window into the decision making and purchasing processes of Ireland's leading companies" and will hear from, among others, Killian O'Flynn, head of SME banking at Permanent TSB; Emmanuel Heddin, head of procurement at DAA; Grant Gilmore, operations manager at Intertrade Ireland.

Friday, February 7th

Results: Buzzi Unicem.
Indicators: UK Halifax House Price Index (Jan); German industrial production (Dec), exports and imports (Dec); US non-farm payrolls (Jan), unemployment (Jan), average earnings (Jan).
Meetings: Data Protection Conference (Radisson Blu Hotel, Golden Lane, Dublin 8); Cork Chamber annual dinner (Cork City Hall, Cork).