Enterprise Ireland is a government organization that supports Irish business development abroad.
We have asked Ladislav Muller, manager of the organization, about what they do and what has changed in 2020.
1. What is the scope of Enterprise Ireland in the Czech Republic?
Enterprise Ireland offices in Prague and Budapest help Irish client companies (small and medium-sized businesses that export their products or services) in Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, Romanian, Ukrainian, Croatian, Slovenian and Serbian markets. It’s one of 40 offices Enterprise Ireland has around the world.
2. What kind of support can you provide to Irish companies who want to enter the Czech market?
Our office primarily helps with market research and scoping, customer and distributor search and introductions to key market or sector contacts. We also help Irish companies participate in local trade fairs & events and with the identification of local business opportunities.
3. How many companies are in your portfolio and is there a predominant sector?
There are over 300 Irish companies that export to central and southeast European markets. Most of them sell to multinational companies based in this region. Key sectors include automotive, electronics, agriculture, medical technologies and IT/BPO sectors. Irish companies have excellent solutions and products for many sectors, from which local customers can really benefit. There are many examples of Irish innovation on our website www.IrishAdvantage.com.
4. What are the biggest challenges you have had in 2020?
An almost complete transfer to an online environment. Virtual meetings, presentations, new digital collateral and online introductions. Business is always about trust and building new relationships online has been a major challenge. Lockdowns around the world have had a profoundly negative impact on many sectors including travel, airlines and hospitality industries. Finding new customers in less affected sectors or adjusting business offers to this new reality has been a big task for all of us in 2020.
5. If I may ask a personal question: what is the best part of your job?
The work of our small team in the Czech Republic and Hungary is very diverse. It includes lots of interaction with people from different sectors and different business cultures. The region we work in is also quite diverse, each country is different. Each project is different. One needs to learn new things every day and communicate well with both client companies and business partners. All this makes our work very interesting and exciting.
We want to thank Ladislav for answering our questions and we invite you to check Enterprise Ireland's page for more information.