The Business Bulletin - Issue 207 - 8th July 2013

Congratulations Colly

Northern Ireland Sales Training Company Signs Training Contract with Singapore Training Provider

Colly Graham of salesxcellence has just returned from Asia where he has signed a contract with ST – Success Training of Singapore to deliver sales training master classes in Asia.

Colly will deliver his first master class to major Asian companies on Key Account Management in June.

During the year he will deliver master classes on Sales Compensation, Sales Strategy and Sales Leadership.

Previously Colly with his company salesxcellence has delivered master classes in Asia on Key Accounts Management, Sales Compensation and Sales Leadership.

The participants have included some Asia’s major companies in banking, financial services, IT companies, fmcg and capital equipment.

One such company was APU, a beer and vodka manufacturer and distributor based in Ulan Bator, Mongolia.

Start-Up Loans Programme launched

Northern Ireland Start Up Loan Fund Northern Ireland Start Up Loans programme launched

Megan Downey (School for Start Ups); Gordon Gough (Enterprise Northern Ireland); Mark Dougan (Prince’s Trust); Phelim Sharvin, (Ulster Community Investment Trust Group (UCIT).

Four local organisations have been selected to be the initial roll out partners for the Start-Up Loans programme to Northern Ireland.

Launched by Vince Cable MP, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, the local organisations will be working directly with the Start-Up Loans Company which aims to provide support for budding young entrepreneurs aged 18-30.

The Start-Up Loans programme aims to provide at least 250 loans in the next twelve months with the Enterprise Northern Ireland and Prince’s Trust networks leading the way.

The Northern Ireland initial roll out partners named locally are:

  1. Enterprise Northern Ireland;
  2. Ulster Community Investment Trust Group (UCIT);
  3. Princes Trust Northern Ireland;
  4. School for Start-Ups.

The programme which is currently in operation in England has already committed more than 5,000 loans to entrepreneurs in the 18-30 year old bracket.

Further information about the loan fund can be obtained by contacting the Enterprise Northern Ireland office on028 7776 3555.

Can Retail Survive? Part II
by Nick O'Shiel

Some commentators argue that retail, as we know it, is dead and that the future of shopping is online. They suggest physical shops will continue to lose out to online competition. Others argue the future of retail is not so bleak and that it will consist of physical shops complemented by online.

Even if we accept physical shops will continue to be attractive given the basic desire of people to mix with others and socialise as part of the shopping experience, there is little doubt the traditional shop will have to change.

The basic argument about whether retail will be physical or online falls into the traditional ‘either’, ‘or’ approach with one side winning and the other side losing.

The new argument about the future of retail falls into the ‘and’ dimension where it is most likely there will continue to be physical ‘and’ online shopping but the physical shop and shopping experience will have to be different.

Given the efficiency of online retailers such as Amazon, the physical shop will have to be more of an ‘experience’ that entertains and engages the customer.

Shops will have to be attractive to visit and provide added value to the customer in the form of specialised advice, personalised services or specific expertise.

Retail shops will need to develop specialised staff training to improve customer service and use technology to build relationships to ensure customers are motivated to return.

Technology will continue to replace people in the front line, as shops, particularly those that compete on cost will become more automated to compete with online sellers.

Retail shops of the future will continue to need staff but the emphasis will be on staff that engage customers and add real value to the sales process.

Customers will have less time and little interest in volunteering personal information for capture on databases to benefit the retailer unless they receive benefits from the exchange.

Rapid change will continue and the high street, shopping centres and retail parks will need to be more flexible and creative to accommodate greater and more regular churn of retail tenants.

The physical retail market will continue to be squeezed which will force average and poor performers out of business and reward those who provide exceptional value, service and customer experience.

So, physical retail has a future but it will be different and retailers will have to work hard to understand what ‘different’ means for them.

What do you think? Can retail survive? Get in touch, we would love to hear your views contact Nick on 028 8224 9494 or via Twitter @nick_oec.



Welcome to BORDER-ZINE...

the E-Zine from the Centre for Cross Border Studies (CCBS) and the International Centre for Local and Regional Development (ICLRD).

The Centre for Cross Border Studies is seeking a Research and Policy Manager to take overall responsibility for the research and policy analysis functions of the Centre. In particular, this will involve a major role in developing and testing tools to be used in capacity-building training for cross-border cooperation and working closely with policy-makers and others working to influence public policies in the island of Ireland and the EU.  Closing date: 26th July 2013.

Further details of the post of Research and Policy Manager and how to apply >>  

INTERTRADEIRELAND - Go-2-Tender Workshops

Go-2-Tender is an InterTradeIreland programme which has been developed to give SMEs the confidence, knowledge and practical skills to tender successfully for public sector contracts particularly on a cross-border basis.The Programme consists of two days of workshops with 1/2 day mentoring for every participant company.
See more >>  

TALENT FOR GOVERNANCE: Call for applications

The Hague Academy for Local Governance invites young talented local government practitioners to apply for one of its two Talent for Governance programmes organised in September and October of 2013. A minimum of two and a maximum of twenty ambitious young civil servants will be given the opportunity to participate in a 3-week programme including: a two week international training course at The Hague Academy for Local Governance based in the Hague, the Netherlands and a week-long internship at a Dutch Municipality. The choice of programmes for 2013 is either
  • Fiscal Decentralisation & Local Finance (16 September to 5 October 2013) or
  • Local Economic Development – programme (11 to 30 November 2013).
Application Deadline 15 July 2013
Find out more >>  

TOMORROW'S PEACEBUILDERS: Call for applications

Peace Direct are launching Tomorrow’s Peacebuilders’, a new competition to find the best emerging peacebuilding organisations.
Four winning entries will be selected to receive: $4,000 funding for peacebuilding activities; The opportunity to attend a Peace Direct peacebuilder conference or visit another peacebuilding organisation; Promotion of their work online.
All applications must be received by 9 August 2013.

Download the application form, guidance notes and full terms and conditions >>  


The Peace and Sport Awards put the spotlight on initiatives and individuals who have particularly contributed to peace and social stability in the world in 2013. These Awards reward the expertise of various stakeholders working for sustainable peace through sport, through initiatives promoting the best practices in the field. The application process for the Peace and Sport Awards 2013 is now open.  The Peace and Sport Awards ceremony will be held during the Gala Evening of the Peace and Sport International Forum on Thursday, 7 November 2013, in the presence of H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco.
Registration closing date: 8th September 2013

Further information >>  

COCA-COLA THANK YOU FUND: Call for applications

The 2013 Coca-Cola Thank You Fund is inviting applications from non-profit organisations, charities and community groups who are seeking support to develop new and innovative projects or initiatives that encourage communities to lead more balanced, healthy and active lives.  
The Fund, now in its third year, is once again making €125,000 available to eligible non-profit organisations on the island of Ireland.
The Fund is supported by The Federation of Irish Sport, The Wheel and The Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action (NICVA)
All applications should be submitted via the
Coca-Cola website until Friday 19 July, 2013.

For Northern Ireland specific contracts, there are a number of sources of information specifically for contracts within Northern Ireland. The Central Procurement Directorate (CPD) handles contracts for a number of government departments. You can find a list of current tender opportunities on the CPD website. Again, there is no email alert facility that we can find which makes the content difficult to adapt to the Bulletin format.
Please see for the current list of Northern Ireland opportunities.

Staff WC Refurbishment at Trust Headquarters
GB-East Grinstead: Jubilee Building Central Heating System
Review of the potential for carbon savings from residential energy efficiency measures.
Provision of a New Biomass Boiler Installation
GB-stockton: Q13-11 Refurbishment of Everly House
Southside BID Retained Designer/Design Agency
Evidence reviews ‘Maintaining a healthy weight and preventing excess weight gain in children and adults’ – partial update of CG43
Quality Assurance of the R-AEA Bottom-Up Model of Combined Heat and Power (CHP)
Informatics Engineering Provision for Windows 7/MS Office 2010 Upgrade
GB-Leicester: Sexual Abuse Services in Leicester 2013 -2015
Land Raise Works, Red Lion Wharf, Northfleet Embankment
Vertical Table Lift
Ground level Surveying of Trees
GB-London: Green Roof
Angel Accelerator
Replacement Roof Cladding & Staircase, Mary Lyon Centre, Medical Research Council, Harwell
GB-BRISTOL: Provision of the Live Events, Supporting Equipment and Management for Exercise Joint Caterer 2014-2017
Provision of Quality Inspector Services
Informatics Engineering Provision for Windows 7/MS Office 2010 Upgrade
United Kingdom-Newcastle upon Tyne: Software package and information systems
United Kingdom-Bolton: Software maintenance and repair services
United Kingdom-Crewe: Inventory management software package
United Kingdom-London: Project management consultancy services
United Kingdom-Kilmarnock: Industry specific software package
United Kingdom-Birmingham: Computer platforms
United Kingdom-Glasgow: Software package and information systems
United Kingdom-Glasgow: Information technology services
United Kingdom-Brighton: Software package and information systems
United Kingdom-Preston: Electrical equipment and apparatus
United Kingdom-Basildon: Pathology services
United Kingdom-Sandbach: Printing and related services
United Kingdom-Kenilworth: Electronic data management (EDM)
United Kingdom-Coventry: Project management consultancy services
United Kingdom-York: Software package and information systems
United Kingdom-Belfast: Information technology services
United Kingdom-London: IT services: consulting, software development, Internet and support
United Kingdom-London: Software package and information systems
GB-stockton: Q13-11 Refurbishment of Everly House
Provision of a New Biomass Boiler Installation
GB-East Grinstead: Jubilee Building Central Heating System
Staff WC Refurbishment at Trust Headquarters
Land Raise Works, Red Lion Wharf, Northfleet Embankment
GB-London: Green Roof
Norway-Stavanger: Services related to the oil and gas industry
United Kingdom-Solihull: Lifts
Norway-Lillestrøm: Pipeline, piping, pipes, casing, tubing and related items
Norway-Trondheim: Excavating work
Norway-Bergen: Construction materials
Norway-Oslo: Carpets
Norway-Leikanger: Geological consultancy services
Norway-Oslo: Building construction work
Norway-Oslo: Signage
United Kingdom-Belfast: Public utilities
Norway-Stavanger: Construction work for tunnels
Germany-Bonn: Tarpaulins
Norway-Bergen: Environmental engineering consultancy services
Norway-Horten: Industrial machinery

Belfast City Council Tenders are available at

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