On Friday last, December 1st, Collins McNicholas Recruitment & HR Services Group were winners of The Sligo Business of The Year at the annual Sligo Chamber of Commerce dinner. This award was humbling & honouring as we know of so many fantastic businesses in Sligo at the moment.
When I think back to 1998 and we were operating with an Apple Mac and the Golden Pages phone book in a single office, it is clear to see how far we have come. We had youth and naivety on our side, it can be a great combination. From that point on we have grown the business with great support from the business community in Sligo and the North West Region. Just over two years ago Michelle Murphy, Antoinette O’Flaherty and myself completed an MBO to take over the business. We now employ over 50 people across six offices, 15 of whom are based in Sligo including our recruitment, finance and marketing teams. We have ambitions to grow the business in the coming years.
We have had a lot of help and support along the way. I would like to thank our customers, suppliers and partners locally who have supported our journey over the past 19 years in Sligo and 27 years as the group – thank you all for your support and loyalty. We have been blessed with some loyal customers whom we have had the pleasure of building real partnerships with.
On the night, a number of other extremely talented Sligo business people were also acknowledged. EJ’s Menswear – an incredible example of innovation and brilliant marketing. They are a brilliant example of building a superb business against the backdrop of declining retail sales. Sometimes we can view innovation as being the preserve of the multinationals but innovation is something that every business should strive to embed in their culture and DNA. They really are a great example of building a business well beyond Sligo.
Andy Rogers was also recognised for all the fantastic work he has done developing the Sligo Diaspora in London and in the wider UK. In a regional location it is critical that we reach out to our Diaspora and engage with them more often. Pat McCann too, who has achieved widespread success in business since his original work with various major hotel groups.
Finally, I must thank our fantastic team in Sligo! The team in Sligo have been superb – really focussed on our customers & providing excellent service. This award is down to their commitment and work they do for clients in the region day in and day out. Thanks to our Sligo consultants Aideen Cummins, Christina Hunt, Niamh Cregg, Colin Byrne, Davin Ferguson & Mark Whelan, our finance team Fiona Collery, Louise Feerick, Michelle Finan and Sabrina Borges-Barry, and our marketing team Martina Rooney, David Hanley and Dylan Kilgallon – all of whom are based in our Sligo office.
Both Antoinette and I are proud Sligo natives and we never miss an opportunity to sell the virtues of Sligo whilst travelling across Ireland and abroad. I truly believe Sligo is a great place to live, work, learn, visit and invest. There are some excellent companies here with big reputations such as Abbott, Abbvie, Overstock, and Aurivo, which shows the calibre of business that is attracted to our region.
I would like to thank Sligo Chamber and sponsor Ocean FM for Friday evenings event. Now more than ever we need a strong chamber and I would encourage businesses to get involved, and support the Chamber and the various initiatives. It’s important that we have a strong unified voice articulating our concerns and needs at a national level and not just for Sligo for the entire region. We certainly need to think at a regional level not just local.
Collins McNicholas Recruitment & HR Services Group