“Clevamama” wins Overall SFA National Small Business Award 2015

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

· “Clevamama” wins Overall SFA National Small Business Award 2015
· Finalist companies employ 650 people across 16 counties
· Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation presents awards
    Clevamama has won the Overall SFA National Small Business Award 2015. Winners were selected from over 500 applications received for the 2015 programme.

    Based in Swords in North County Dublin and employing 12 people, Clevamama was established by working mums and sisters, Martina Craine and Suzanne Browne. Their products are designed by mums for mums and their aim is to produce innovative products to make parents lives that bit easier.

    The seven category winners were:

    · Manufacturing: Celtic Pure, Co Monaghan
    · Food & Drink: Quinlan's Fish and Quinlan's Seafood Bars, Co Kerry
    · Services: Team Horizon, Co Mayo
    · Outstanding Small Business (up to 5 employees): Earth's Edge, Dublin
    · Innovator of the Year: Clevamama, Dublin
    · Energy & Environmental Sustainability: Nugent Manufacturing, Co Kildare
    · Small Business Exporter of the Year: Topform, Galway

    The presentation of the awards was made by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD. This is the eleventh year of the SFA National Small Business Awards, which are organised by the Small Firms Association.

    Announcing the winner, AJ Noonan, SFA Chairman said “Clevamama have been involved with our awards programme since 2011 when they first entered the outstanding small business category. During the intervening years Suzanne, Martina and their team have taken their business to the next level in Ireland and further afield. They have shown the perseverance of true entrepreneurs and their company is a prime example of a small business punching well above its weight!”

    The award categories are sponsored by Enterprise Ireland, Bord Bia, Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland, DHL Express, AIB, Three, Energia and the Emerging New Business section is sponsored by IE Domain Registry. ManagementWorks is the management development partner.

    Speaking at the event, SFA Chairman, AJ Noonan said “You are the engines of future growth in this economy. You have proven your commitment, drive and ambition and we are delighted to celebrate your achievements. All of the finalists have brought with them this evening their hard-working teams. Together you employ more than 650 people and tonight is an opportunity to acknowledge your contribution.”


    For interviews, please contact: AJ Noonan, SFA Chairman Tel: 086 2592610

    Issued by: Alan Sherlock, Awards Executive, Small Firms Association Tel: 086 1731372

    · Interviews with the Award Winners can be arranged through Alan Sherlock, Awards Executive at Tel: 01-6051664, Mob: 086 1731372
    · Photographs are available on request from the awards ceremony

    Category winners:
    · Manufacturing Award (up to 50 employees); Sponsored by Energia
      The winner of this category was Celtic Pure (Monaghan).

      Celtic Pure is an Award winning water bottling plant in south Co Monaghan. With a spring well located on site Celtic Pure produces all its own bottles at its 27,000sqft facility. Last year the company produced just short of 30 million bottles through the plant with all of the water sourced from the three wells now bored on the land. There are 35 people employed in the factory which boasts its own blow moulding facility.

    · Food & Drink Award (up to 50 employees), sponsored by Bord Bia
      Winner of this category was Quinlan's Fish and Quinlan's Seafood Bars (Kerry) and highly commended was awarded to Eight Degrees Brewing Company (Cork).

      Quinlan’s Fish is a family run seafood business originating in 1960 at their processing plant in Caherciveen, Co. Kerry. They catch and process the finest and freshest sustainable seafood from Ireland’s west coast and supply their four premier fish shops and two seafood bars where their company mantra ‘From Tide to Table’ is well received and trusted.

      Eight Degrees Brewing Company was set up by Australian Cameron Wallace and New Zealander Scott Baigent who met in Dublin over ten years ago while sharing a house. Both had a love of travel and a fondness for tasty ‘craft’ beer and decided to set up a microbrewery in Ireland. In 2010 they gave up their jobs to follow their hobby and went to Berlin to the VLB Microbiology Institute to study brewing science and the rest is history. They are now brewing in Mitchelstown Co. Cork using only natural ingredients -- malted barley, hops, Galtee water and brewer’s yeast -- and no added chemicals or artificial preservatives.

    · Services Award (up to 50 employees), sponsored by Three
      Winner of this category was Team Horizon (Mayo) and highly commended was awarded to Action Point Innovation (Limerick).

      Team Horizon was born from spotting a gap in the market for a group of highly qualified engineers. This consultancy company offers solutions in manufacturing organisation, primarily in the medical devices, pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. The company’s main challenge has been resourcing and keeping a pipeline of graduates and highly skilled technicians and engineers.

      From Castletroy in Limerick, Action Point offers fully integrated software development services to clients here in Ireland, the UK and the US. The company is renowned for developing quality process automation systems for its clients. The company was involved in developing the online booking service to replace the old fashioned ticketing system at the passport office.

    · Outstanding Small Business (up to five employees), sponsored by AIB
      Winner of this category was Earth's Edge (Dublin) and highly commended was awarded to Italian Tile and Stone (Dublin).

      Earth’s Edge goal is to provide a life-changing experience for guests in a safe and fun environment. Founded by James McManus who has studied sports science, represented Ireland as a kayaker in his teens and worked as a guide in Wales, the Alps, Zambia and the white Nile in Uganda, his company is offering trekking, rafting , biking and its signature tri-adventure expeditions in over 40 countries.

      Italian Tile and Stone was set up in 2000 and had two strands to the business, the majority based around contracts in big housing schemes and the retail side a much smaller part of the business. The downturn in the property market saw turnover decimated by 90% in 2010 and the company has gone through some really tough times. However a determination to succeed saw Luke Sweeney re-invent the business by concentrating on the retail side of the business by re-defining his product range, renovating his premises and embracing online marketing.

    · Innovator Of The Year (up to 50 employees), sponsored by Enterprise Ireland
      Winner of this category was Clevamama (Dublin) and highly commended was awarded to Ventac (Wicklow).

      Clevamama™ is a multi-award winning international company, renowned for its pioneering, practical and well-designed baby products. Established by working Mums and sisters Martina Craine and Suzanne Browne, the products are designed by Mums for Mums. Clevamama™’s innovative products and unrivalled industry research prove that we lead and never follow.

      Ventac was originally set up in 1972 to distribute ventilation products for the Irish market and the company evolved as it researched noise treatment as fans became noisier. Following a management buyout in 2014 the ventilation side of the business has been shed and the company now designs, manufactures and supplies acoustic solutions for bus and commercial vehicle manufacturers across Europe at its €1m state of the art acoustic laboratory in Blessington, Co. Wicklow.

    · Energy & Environmental Sustainability (up to 50 employees), sponsored by The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland
      The winner of this category was Nugent Manufacturing (Kildare).

      Nugent Manufacturing is a specialist steel manufacturing company. The business which employs 18, prides itself on skill, expertise, quality and teamwork. Having come through difficult times in the construction sector things are starting to pick up for Nugent mainly because of the construction boom in the UK. The company has recently invested in achieving ISO 9001 quality management certification and CE certification for complete traceability for the steel and components it uses.

    · Small Business Exporter Of The Year (up to 50 employees), sponsored by DHL Express
      Winner of this category was Topform (Galway) and highly commended was awarded to ClubsToHire (DUBLIN).

      Topform was established 38 years ago and employs 48 people. It has become a market leader in the manufacture of kitchen worktops. Topform selects the latest innovations and contemporary designs from around the globe and its contemporary colour range introduces more vibrant gloss decors and textures not seen on the Irish market before. The company has an intensive programme of Research and Development and is now known as a ‘Creative Worktop Solutions company’.

      Employing 32 people, ClubsToHire is cornering the market for golf club hire at an exceptional pace. This service takes the hassle out of carrying golf clubs abroad, saves the user money and affords the golfer the opportunity to try the latest brands from the premium suppliers. The company has retail outlets at Malaga and Faro airports and the company plans to open another 5 stores soon. A stock of over 4,000 sets ensures a wide choice and prices range from €35-€60 per week.

    · Emerging New Business (up to 50 employees and under two years old), sponsored by IE Domain Registry
      The five companies selected for showcasing in this section were: Dúnmasc Genetics (Laois), Herdwatch (Tipperary), OxyMem (Athlone), Smartspot (Meath) and TenderScout (Dublin).

      Dúnmasc Genetics provide products, services and training to the farming, veterinary and AI Industry. Initially, bovine embryo transfer and ultrasound scanning were the core components of the business, but the past few years has seen the business diversify its services, as it expanded into artificial insemination (AI), hoof trimming and the distribution and sales of AI straws.

      Herdwatch, put simply is CRM for cows, an innovative mobile app which helps cattle farmers stay compliant with complex regulations on animal welfare and traceability and gives them access to valuable farm records and animal history, anytime, anywhere. Herdwatch was launched in Ireland in February 2014, following two years of research and development and is suitable for iPhones, iPads, Android devices, PCs and laptops and the app is approved by the Department of Agriculture so farmers can easily register calves or sync their herd with the Department systems, directly from their smartphone.

      Oxymem employ 28 and are an extremely innovative start-up. The company solves energy intensive wastewater treatment by using an alternative to the current state energy intensive process which uses oxygen bubble aeration. Oxymem instead uses gas permeable membranes to deliver oxygen directly to the wastewater treating bacteria. This process uses four times less energy at a lower cost than traditional technologies. The company has secured over €1.85m over the last 15 months and is growing manufacturing capability eight-fold in the coming year.

      Set up by Michael Finucane the founder of Gamestop and EL Software, software retailer Smartspot not only sells new phones, tablets, laptops and accessories but also specialises in ‘Nused’ products, previously owned devices which have been serviced, cleaned, upgraded and new to the customer with a 12 month warranty. Starting out in Trimgate Street, Navan in March 2013 the company started with both a retail and online presence. Success saw the expansion of the business into trading DVDs, games, consoles, books and thanks to the advice of the director’s 14-year-old son, it also began trading Lego.

      Tenderscout, based on the East Wall Road in Dublin helps sales managers and tender professionals to easily find new and future public sector business opportunities that are aligned with their areas of experience and expertise. The company which has grown to 8 employees has received funding under the New Frontiers programme and was awarded €50,000 from the Competitive Start Fund from Enterprise Ireland last year. Clients for Tenderscout are mainly Legal, ICT, Healthcare and other professional service providers.