Speed Dating at CorkMeet

I  signed no non-disclosure agreements. I wasn't asked too.  Closest I got to such discretion was when I asked someone "do you want to keep this business under the radar?" So I think I can freely report on the day, mentioning all I met.

The value of doing a review of the day is obvious.  It's especially important  when you have a business partner off meeting others.

What follows is an intelligence dump. If I leave anyone out, they can catch up with me tomorrow - at the business conference led by David McWilliams.

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Business cards in random order:

(1) Embassy of the USA, Commercial Service, Stephen J Anderson: we met on Wednesday evening.  He was gracious & listened to me wax on about Peter Doyle from Limerick who was Walt Whitman's lover. He gave me the impression that the USA had it's finger on the pulse.  Today I met his colleague Joshua Carpenter.  I asked about the prospect of getting support for shifting our copywriting business into USA.  He showed me who to talk to if we wanted to set up in Boston.

(2) Romanian Delegation, Softcon, Alin Marconi (Managing Director), lives in Tmisoara, with 350,000 others. He was looking to build contacts with software people in Ireland, particularly people who sell software.  Aurelia Paun, economist, from Ministry of SMEs, Trade & Business Environment, Romanian Trade Promotion Center - we said hello to each other.  Constantin Miu is consular official responisble for ROI: he told me Dragon was father of Dracula. Dan Baclesanu, ARIES Romanian Association for Electronic & Software Industry was very friendy to me.  Brem Walter, Codespring, General Manager, was great.  I have an invitation to Romania, his Facebook name. His company does 5-D (3-D +time+money).  I think I might persuade him to write guest blogpost on how business is done in Romania.

(3) Rochestown Park Hotel, Anne Sexton, Business Development Manager: I only had time to let her know that this is the hotel I use least in Cork.  We agreed to meet up.

(4) Ile de Re Tourisme, Catherine Senand, Directrice, was here to gather intelligence. She's in between the French business & the Irish consumer.  Her strategic aim was to raise the % of non-French visitors to Ile de Re.  I told her there was a company in the room that specialised in translating French to & from English.  I promised to send her an email with their details.  Also introduced her to Flickr.  I began to think that we could write for her new website in mid 2010. We'll keep in touch.

(5) In Hand Guides, Trevor Winckworth, Managing Director, told me their product was being used on London Eye.  Irish Cancer Society & Bloomsday are his clients too.  He also told me about how In Hand Guides changed their business model. I began to think of several applications for his ideas, and I'll certainly be following up with him.

(6) Blackwater Castle, Castletownroche, Co Cork, Patrick Nordstrom & I ran into each other by accident early in the day.  We built rapport. He had a meeting with Gwenda later. We'll be visiting him soon.

(7) Totem Visual Communications, Maeve Quill, Business Development Exec. told me I could find her on LinkedIn. All I can remember is a very good first impressing and us agreeing to make contact again soon.

(8) Cork County Council, Noel O'Driscoll, Economic Development Dept.  I congratulated him for the support the Council had given CorkMeet.  I started to show him Twitter where I'd tweeted about him earlier - but the laptop took too long to boot up and he had to go see someone else. Aileen O'Donovan & Mairead Marnane were great to talk to about Twitter.  Mayor Cllr Derry Canty, Fine Gael, was pleased to be congratulated and convinced this was the first CorkMeet of many.

(9) City & County of Swansea, Donna Davies gave me her card as I told her one of our unique selling points was that Gwenda Hughes spoke & wrote Welsh.  We're keen to develop links that will be follow the sailing of the Ferry in  March 2010.

(10) Newsweaver, Liam O'Callaghan, Business Development Manager, had tweeted from #corkmeet when I met him on his laptop.  We spoke about newsletters.  Our newsletter will be coming down the line, but our micro business is not really geared up for Newsweaver.  I was so pleased to meet someone tweeting.  In two years, they'll all be doing it.

(11) Jackideas.eu, Energy Saver Consultant, John J Healy, entrepreneur impressed me with stories of businesses he'd invented that hadn't worked. I think it's hard to build a successful business until you've failed a few times.

(12) PIMS business systems in the wilds of Co Waterford, Gavin Mackay from Perth, Scotland told me he began in tropical & environmental science.  I looked his company up on Google at reception on Wednesday.

(13) CSS CompuCal Software Solutions began in 1989.  Jackie Dornan, MD, impressed me with talk of "calibration management" - but I can't quite remember what that means.

(14) Cork Chamber, Conor Healy,Chief Executive, was welcoming & friendly.  I was glad to meet him for the first time, and say how impressed I was.  He introduced me to Stephen J Anderson.

(15) Fuzion Communications, Deirdre Waldron, we met briefly.  I think we said we'd meet again but I might be  wrong.

(16) Flavour House Ireland, David O'Riordan, Sales & Marketing Director, was one of the first I met on Wednesday.  He helped me settle in to the flow.  He deals in ingredients.  I have some contacts in the food retail sector but little in the the supply of imported ingredients of Irish food manufacturers.

(17) The Bel Air String Quartet (0872878680) played for us on Wednesday.  I bet I was the only one to get their card.

(18) Irish Examiner, media partner to #corkmeet, Ger Duggan, display advertising manager, told me Conor Keane might be coming.  I gave him my card for Conor whom I know but haven't seen for ages.

(19) PKonsult, Peter from Lusk, is setting up in business.  I offered to tell him about all the cock-ups I've made since I began my first business in 1998.  Like me, he's been attracted by the prospect of David McWilliams tomorrow.

(20) Cork Convention Bureau, Ann Cronin, Business Development Manager.  What did we talk about?

(21) Radiant Europe, Padraig O'Neill, Director was a breath of fresh air because he's ahead of me on the technology.  I met him in the lobby.  He was beside a digital sign containing advertising.  The resource which could have been full of content from Twitter made me think of lots of applications.  It's in use in Balincolig, Thurles & Dungarvan shopping centres.  Coming soon to Douglas Village.  I might be able to write content for such a situation. Irish Army & Queen's University are using it already.

(22) Nova Language Solutions, the most remarkable scheduled meeting of all with Sinead Healy, because Charlotte Jahanno  of About France 'gatecrashed' and made us a threesome. (She really wanted to meet Sinead). Sinead introduced me to the term "website localisation".  It was a BNI network connection that brought us together. I got the idea our Welsh language ability might turn out to be an income earner.  We three will keep in touch.

(23) Croi na Feile, Gretta Murphy, spiritual healer & teacher, used to work in IBEC until she shifted career.  She decided to meet Dragon Marketing & Copywriting Services International.  By the end of our conversation I was looking forward to continuing discussion in Beara, West Cork

(24) AV3 Production, Michael Lynch, met Gwenda & me around the laptop from which I was tweeting. They're in Blarney with an advanced film production unit, including a "RED" camera.  A visit is surely called for.

(25) TSG Telecom Solutions Group (for whom I've worked), Sean Ware, Director, was a welcome familiar face and humour.  He's sent a piece I wrote to Goodbiz.ie, and I'm thrilled to see writing getting round to new audiences.

(26) Effective Solutions, HR Advisory service, Veronica Murphy, was my last formal meet. Her business offers "Start Your Own Business" training courses. An interest in copy writing & web design linked us. I hope she didn't mind me showing my passion for un-cliched writing. We arranged to meet soon in Crosshaven.

(27) Bard, Leonie Ni Charthaigh, Business Development Manager - how did we meet?

(28) Merrie Technologies, Alan Hynes, was there.  I think that's the company that facilitated the whole event via their software.  I got the card from someone.

(29) Cork-Swansea Ferry, Padraig Fleming, one of those who led the successful enterprise to restore the Ferry said I should meet Ray Maguire who works for the business from Penrose Wharf.  I hope to get closer to the full story of how the Ferry was saved.  I do hope it becomes a huge commercial success.

(30) Ketch.ie, John invited me to take a look at the website and offer feedback.

(31) Ballywire.ie, Paul Collins was good to meet even though he had to dash off. He said to keep in touch.

Wow - that's it