‘Client News’ Category

Volkswagen most popular brand in Ireland, Golf remains top selling model

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015

• YTD Car Market up 25.37% on same period in 2014
• Volkswagen No1 Car Brand in Ireland
• Golf No1 Model in Ireland
• Passat sales up 54% year on year

Volkswagen Group Ireland CEO, Lars Himmer, said today that there are strong signs of a sustainable recovery within the Irish motoring sector, largely supported by the availability of competitive finance products such as PCP which have kept the industry alive through very difficult times, however he warned against complacency in a market that is vulnerable to external shocks and which depends on a continuing recovery in consumer confidence.

Volkswagen Bank is the leading player in the car finance sector in Ireland and it has delivered funding to almost 12,000 customers in the first half of 2015, an increase of over 50% year-on-year.

Volkswagen Group Ireland brands now account for 1 in 4 new car sales in Ireland. 25.22% of all new cars registered in Ireland for the first half of the year came from Volkswagen Group Ireland brands. The industry has now seen its strongest first quarter for new car sales since 2008.

Paul Burke, Head of Operations, Volkswagen Passenger cars commented: “Our dealers are seeing a strong resurgence in demand year to date and we are confident based on our product updates scheduled for the second half that our growth story can continue. Year to date this has been driven by strong demand for Ireland’s favourite car model, Golf and the newly launched Passat which are delivering footfall in our dealerships nationwide. New models such as the new Touran will also deliver interest in the second half.”

Volkswagen Passenger Cars was the Number One car brand in the first half of 2015 and now has 12.6% market share YTD. The Golf remains the most popular car model in Ireland too, with just under 5% Market Share.

Commenting on performance, CEO, Lars Himmer added: “We are encouraged by the recovery to date which is in part due to the investments that we have made with our dealer partners to improve the network and the customer experience across all of our brands. This work will continue and we now know the market will exceed the 100,000 mark for the first time since 2007.”

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Thursday, August 7th, 2014

Holly Carpenter was on hand with some of the soccer stars of the future to help Volkswagen Ireland launch the Volkswagen Junior Masters at the AUL complex. This exciting new grassroots initiative further strengthens Volkswagen’s support for Irish Soccer which already includes sponsorship agreements with a number of top Irish teams including Shelbourne FC, Bray Wanderers and Sligo Rovers.


Simon Elliott, CEO of Volkswagen Group Ireland commented: “We are strong supporters of Irish soccer and believe this new tournament, in which teams from across Ireland are participating, is a wonderful way to support and connect with Irish soccer communities. We are delighted to have this opportunity to support the soccer stars of the future and to help them on their way. It is with great pleasure that I will welcome all our teams, managements, referees, media, parents and supporters to the A.U.L complex for the inaugural Volkswagen Junior Masters Ireland competition.”


“We are delighted to become part of such a prestigious competition and look forward to growing the tournament in the upcoming years. I would like to wish all the players the very best of luck over what I am sure will be a very exciting weekend of soccer. While the winning of trophies is the aim, sport provides a wonderful opportunity to build long lasting friendships, learn important life skills and create memories,” added Simon Elliott.


There are sixteen teams participating in this 11-a-side tournament played according to official FIFA rules on regular sized pitches with regular size goals.  The group stages, in which there are four groups of four teams, will be played on Saturday 9th August with the semi-finals and finals taking place on Sunday 10th August. The Grand Final will take place at 2.30pm on Sunday.

VW Juniors Masters Launch 1

Love Irish Food brands at Bloom

Friday, May 30th, 2014

Love Irish Food

Love Irish Food brands with annual sales of over €50 million will take part in this year’s Bloom festival. The Love Irish Food area in Bloom will feature fifteen member brands, which employ approximately 3,000 people, between them.

Brands attending the event this year will be showcasing the very best in Irish food and drink manufacturing. The expected 100,000 visitors to Bloom over the course of the weekend will be able to meet the brand owners, enjoy delicious tasters and avail of special offers unique to Bloom.

Kieran Rumley, Executive Director, Love Irish Food said: “We have surveyed our members brands attending Bloom and the good news is that the majority of them are optimistic about growth and many companies are hoping to create new jobs, locally and internationally, in 2014 and 2015. If consumers continue to support Love Irish Food brands when they are making purchasing decisions this pays a real dividend for local producers and communities alike.”

This year the Love Irish Food area will be located in the Bloom food village beside the ever popular Chef Demo area. Fifteen individual exhibitors will give a “farmers market” feel to the area with visitors encouraged to relax and enjoy the surroundings. In addition, Love Irish Food has commissioned a specially designed sand sculpture by Daniel Doyle – creating the perfect setting to enjoy a seasonal summer picnic of Irish produce.

Brands attending this year’s event include:

Big Al’s
Britvic Ireland
Jelly Bean Factory
Coole Swan
Golden Irish Eggs
Skoff Pies
TJ Crowe
Spice of Life
Gran Clarkes
Empire DonutsBallygowan/Irish Cancer Society 

Barretstown & Glanbia at Bloom

Thursday, May 29th, 2014


Barretstown and Glanbia will once again join forces and host a unique Barretstown garden experience at Bloom in the Phoenix Park over the June bank holiday weekend. Designed by the award winning landscape architect Tim Austen, the garden will recognise the five year partnership between Glanbia and Barretstown which has raised an amazing €1.6 million for the children’s charity.

Inspired by the magic that campers experience at Barretstown, three time gold star winner at Bloom, Tim Austen has designed an interactive fun-filled garden. References are made throughout the landscape design to Barretstown in Kildare and interactive installations including the Wishing Tree and the artwork wall will enable visitors to Bloom to add their own creative touch to the garden and leave their mark on the Barretstown and Glanbia garden.

“We know from medical experts that intensive cancer treatment for children can last up to three years,” according to Chief Executive of Barretstown Dee Ahearn. “While such treatment now produces so many very positive outcomes medically, its intensity and duration can seriously disrupt childhood. Through the Barretstown camps and our Hospital Outreach Programme we enable children to just be children, even while undergoing such disruptive treatment.”  She added “We’re looking forward to bringing some Barretstown magic to this year’s Bloom and thank Glanbia for its longstanding partnership and dedicated employees who have raised €1.6 million for Barretstown.

“I am delighted that our contribution has made a tangible difference to the lives of over 350 families,” according to Siobhán Talbot, Group Managing Director Glanbia Plc

“Since 2008 we have proudly partnered with Barretstown. Our contribution means that Barretstown is now reaching even more families with camp capacity increasing by 75% since our partnership began.” She added “As a global performance nutrition and ingredients group, we are conscious of our corporate responsibility and in Ireland we always partnered with an organization that worked with children. To this end, Barretstown has been a hugely deserving partner.”

2014 marks Barretstown’s 20th anniversary and the children’s charity has welcomed over 27,000 children and their families since its foundation in 1994. Barretstown would like to thank Glanbia for its longstanding support and welcome visitors to Bloom to visit the magical garden over the bank holiday weekend. News and photos of the garden will be shared on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #Seedsofmagic.

Woodie’s prepares for Bloom 2014

Thursday, May 29th, 2014

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Gardening is back in business, according to Ireland’s leading gardening and DIY retailer, Woodie’s. As a result of the mild spring/summer weather and the improvement in consumer sentiment, Irish consumers are returning to their gardens and they are rolling their sleeves up, to get neglected gardens back in shape, this summer.

To celebrate its presence at Bloom this week, Woodie’s has compiled a list of the current trends in gardening;

  • Irish gardeners are going back to  basics, opting for more planting and less structure in their gardens
  • Colour is in high demand with colourful, flowering  bedding plants proving most popular with consumers
  • As optimism levels rise, home owners are happy to spend up to €20 or €30 per store visit, purchasing high impact bedding plants which will deliver immediate colour to their gardens
  • Raised flower beds, hanging baskets and window boxes are on trend again as consumers continue their love affair with container planting
  • Roses are making a comeback in gardens particularly many varieties in the modern range. Disease resistant varieties have now come on stream and are proving popular with many customers.
  • Other on-trend plants include ‘old favourites’ like geraniums, hebes, lavender and a wide range of perennials such as foxgloves etc. The popular bedding plant busy lizzie is again making a return to traditional planting schemes.

Those attending this year’s Bloom Festival can enjoy the Woodie’s show gardens which capture the journey gardening has taken throughout the ages with the ‘Past, Present and Future’ of gardening running as a central theme.

As one of the main sponsors of the festival, Woodie’s will occupy two spaces within the 70 acre site to create its show garden with each section representing past, present and future. Woodie’s has teamed up with Kildare Garden Designer, Anthony Ryan, who designed and created each of the gardens in conjunction with Woodie’s horticultural team.

The Victorian-inspired garden blends ornate embellishments, manicured hedges and clean lines with colourful plants and delicate ironwork. By contrast, the garden of the future portrays an ultra-modern futuristic theme by relying on suttle shapes and a neutral colour palette made up of cool blues, it serves as a contrast to the rigid structure and formality of the Victorian garden.

In contrast to the two alternatively themed large centre gardens, Woodie’s present day garden captures the typical requirements of the average urban dweller. Features include a relaxing area, a lawn space and room for outdoor entertaining.

Ruth Brett, Woodie’s Marketing Director, commented: “Not only do we feel that Anthony’s designs accurately capture the journey gardening has taken down through the years, we are also confident that his innovative yet contemporary take on the past, present and future of gardening will produce a crowd pleasing success.”

Visitors to Bloom can also attend regular demonstrations from Woodie’s expert horticulturist Paddy Gleeson, who will be on hand to offer advice and demonstrations on the techniques required to achieve a simple garden which can be enjoyed by the whole family.“Typically people try to do too much when they start a garden and very often they dive in without a plan. Before they put a spade in the ground they need a plan and a simple sketch. If they start this way and build it up over time that is the best approach”

2014 marks Woodie’s eighth year as sponsor of the Bloom Festival. Woodie’s is an Irish owned company and a retail division of Grafton Group PLC. Over 90% of their plants are sourced from Irish nurseries throughout the country.

Bloom 2014 is taking place in the Phoenix Park Dublin over the June bank holiday weekend, from Thursday 29th May until Monday 2nd June 2014.

1D Love is in the air as Love Hearts turn 60

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

1D Love Hearts bag

2014 marks the 60th anniversary of the iconic Love Hearts sweet and now One Direction fans can show their love for Niall, Harry, Zayn, Liam and Louis by picking up limited edition Love Hearts in advance of the band’s Croke Park concerts this month.

After 60 years of production, Love Hearts sweets remain as popular as ever with 1.75 billion produced each year. To celebrate this landmark anniversary, Swizzels has released a limited edition bag of the iconic Love Hearts sweets with messages including ‘I love Louis’, ‘Harry 4 U’, ‘1D’, ‘Always Niall’, ‘Zayn 4 me’ and ‘Liam Rocks’.

Love is definitely in the air at the factory where Love Hearts are produced with one in four employees currently in a relationship with each other. With 61 couples out of a workforce of 500, several of these relationships started by sharing a ‘Kiss Me’ or ‘First Love’ Love Heart with their sweetheart.

The limited edition #1DLoveHearts are available now at Dunnes Stores and selected Londis, Daytoday, Topaz, and Gala stores nationwide.

Love Hearts are produced by confectionery brand Swizzels which also produces a range of household favourite brands including Drumstick lollies, Refreshers, Fizzers, Double Lollies, Rainbow Drops and Double Dips.

Imelda May Rocks Up to Support Buy My Dress

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Imelda May

Irish singer Imelda May today (07.05.14) launched the Down Syndrome Centre’s Buy My Dress campaign, supported by Kellogg’s Special K. Buy My Dress sales will take place in the RDS in Dublin, as well as Cork, Galway, Limerick, Athlone, Wexford and Waterford with average prices ranging from just €10 – €50. Now in its sixth year, Buy My Dress invites women of all ages to dig out once-loved and lightly worn dresses from their wardrobes and donate to the one day, pop-up sales taking place around the country on Sunday 25th May, in aid of the Down Syndrome Centre.

Since its inception funds raised for the Down Syndrome Centre through Buy My Dress Sales have gone directly to help support families and children born with Down Syndrome. With the opening of the new centre this year, Buy My Dress 2014 will further help provide much needed facilities and services that have been dramatically cut in the current economy.

Speaking at the launch, Sharon Dagg, CEO of Down Syndrome Centre said; “This year we are delighted to have the support of Imelda May and the continued support of Kellogg’s Special K and feel this year will be the year to surpass all previous years. Already the buzz has begun and dresses are coming in at a fantastic rate.  It’s an exciting time for the charity as we have just signed a deal on a premises for the new centre and hope to be up and running by the end of the summer, so the importance of an event like this and raising funds is more imperative than ever”.

Dress donations for this year’s Buy My Dress events have been flying in over the past number of months and shoppers can expect a fantastic range of high-street and designer dresses to choose from. As usual, Irish and international celebs have been more than generous with their donations this year, with fabulous dresses from the well-known faces including Imelda May, Pixie Lott, Ellie Goulding, Grainne Seoige,  Sile Seoige, Lucy Kennedy, Lorraine Keane and Caroline Downey, available to buy on the 25th May.

The 2014 Buy My Dress sales will include something for everyone, including debs gowns, cocktail dresses and casual day wear. The first 100 guests will also be treated to a welcoming glass of Prosecco on arrival.

With the help of teams of volunteers who will organise each county event, the Down Syndrome Centre hopes to sell 10,000 dresses in 2014 and is calling on women nationwide to donate a dress over coming weeks. Dresses can be donated at drop-off points in Carraig Donn stores nationwide until the end of May.

Alexandra Harris, Kellogg’s Special K Brand Manager said; “We are delighted to be sponsoring Buy My Dress again this year. It is such a brilliant initiative and we look forward to the sales each year. Over the years, we have seen the Down Syndrome Centre carry out some amazing work which we are thrilled to be part of. The Special K brand is all empowerment and positive change. Through our association with Buy My Dress hope to empower women to take action and make real changes happen in the lives of others. Buy My Dress provides Irish women with an excellent opportunity to get their hands on high-street and designer dresses at a fraction of the original price, while helping a fantastic cause.”

Buy My Dress events will take place around the country from 11.00am to 5.00pm on Sunday 25th May 2014. Visit www.buymydress.ie to find the event closest to you.

Imelda 2

Tummy turmoil giving Irish economy a €45M stomach ache

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014


New research released today by All-Bran has uncovered a hidden threat to the national economy, with tummy trouble costing Irish businesses a stomach-churning €45M every year.

The study, which surveyed 500 women aged between 18 and 60, found that most women (89%) experience embarrassing stomach complaints, such as bloating or gas, at least once a week.  What’s more, one in five (21%) of those who work admitted to taking at least one day off in the last 12 months as a result.

It is not just businesses counting the cost of poor digestive health, with one in five (21%) women who have taken time off for tummy trouble concerned that it has harmed their prospects of a promotion, pay rise or bonus.

13% of women fear it has negatively impacted their relationship with their boss, while a quarter (26%) admitted to avoiding the work toilet for fear of being shown up by their stomach.  More than half (60%) also said that the problems make them feel unproductive and unable to perform at their best at work – more bad news for their employer’s bottom line.

Outside work, the impact can be just as hard to digest. 15% women have missed out on social events or family occasions due to the state of their stomach whilst almost half (49%) said tummy niggles make them feel self-conscious about showing off their body on holiday.

In response, All-Bran is launching a new campaign – “SOS: Save Our Stomachs” – to encourage people to up their daily intake of fibre, which is scientifically proven to improve digestive health.

SOS spokesperson, Dr Ciara Kelly said: “Many women see stomach complaints as a normal part of everyday life – but, for the majority, it doesn’t have to be that way.  We still have large sections of the population who never eat fruit or vegetables — whose eating habits are grossly unhealthy, but don’t know how to change them. Having a healthy diet which you like, by eating healthy foods that you enjoy is the first step towards better digestive health.  Most of us could see a big improvement just by eating a high-fibre breakfast, like All-Bran, every morning.”

Chair of the World Gastroenterology Organisation, Professor Eamonn Quigley, MD, FACP, FACG adds;  ’Most people living in Ireland, and indeed the whole of Europe, would benefit from increasing their fibre intake by around one third to achieve good digestive health. One of the most effective ways to achieve this increase is by consuming foods rich in wheat bran.’

The research also found that almost one in five (18%) of women skip breakfast at least twice a week, which is one of the main causes of poor digestive health.  This compounds a growing problem for women, with eight out of ten eating less fibre than is recommended. The result is a reduction in general wellbeing, with businesses also forced to stomach the expense of any time they spend away from the work place.

For tips on how to improve digestive health, and for more information on the variety of All-Bran foods available to help, women can visit www.allbran.ie.

2014 Kellogg’s GAA Cul Camps launched

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Launch of the Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camps 2014

Gaelic Games a way of life for most, with 73% of Irish families devoting more than 10 hours per month to GAA sports

Gaelic games continue to enjoy huge popularity in Ireland with 73% of families devoting more than 10 hours per month to GAA sports, according to a survey* commissioned by Kellogg’s to celebrate the launch of the 2014 Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camps.

The importance of Gaelic games among Irish families is reaffirmed by the fact that 23% of parents surveyed say that they have been involved in GAA ‘all my life’, with 24% actively participating in Gaelic games for more than ten years. When the same question was asked to a selection of GAA members and supporters with families**, 68% of these highly engaged supporters said that they have been involved in GAA all their lives. A massive 81% of the same group of respondents also said that the GAA is ‘very important’ to their family.

It is clear that GAA plays a central role in the heart of Irish communities* , with 91% agreeing that the GAA contributes to a sense of community for many. 88% of those surveyed also agreed that volunteers are the backbone of GAA clubs around the country. This belief is further backed up by the fact that 22% of Irish parents offer 10 hours or more per month volunteering their time at their local GAA club.

Speaking at the launch of the 2014 Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camps, GAA President, Liam O’Neill said: “The Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camps have always been an important part of community life in Ireland, teaching children important skills, encouraging friendships and improving physical wellbeing. With over 82,000 children attending the camps in 2013, we are delighted to know that the Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camps continue to be as popular as ever amongst families in Ireland.”

Speaking at the launch, Kellogg’s Managing Director, Jim McNeill said: “At Kellogg’s we are committed to partnerships which support communities, enhance skills and deliver value for money for hard pressed consumers. We are delighted that our support of the GAA Cúl Camps has encouraged greater participation and we are committed to continuing this support in 2014, so that more Irish families can enjoy the Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camp experience.”

Each child booked in to a Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camp in 2014 will receive a free GAA kit and back pack in county colours. Parents can log on to www.gaa.ie/kelloggsculcamps to book their child’s place now.

Speaking at the launch, Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camps Champion, Rory O’Carroll added: “I am delighted to get involved with the Cúl Camps programme again this year. I have mentored and coached at camps in my own club, Kilmacud Crokes, and I have seen how children’s skills can dramatically improve with expert coaching delivered in a safe and fun atmosphere.”

Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camps provide boys and girls – between the ages of 6 and 13 – with an action-packed and fun-filled week of activity which revolves around maximising enjoyment and learning the skills of Gaelic Games. The camps are structured so that a different aspect of the game is worked on each day and children can put into practice what they have learned.  Over one thousand camps will take place in communities all over Ireland during July and August with 2,100 voluntary coaches giving over 30,000 hours of coaching to young children.

* Survey of 530 Irish parents with children aged 6-13 years, carried out by Empathy Research, April 2014.

** Survey of approx. 100 GAA parents, with children, carried out by GAA, April 2014.


Woodie’s unveils brand overhaul

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014


Iconic Irish DIY retailer, Woodie’s has unveiled a revitalised brand identity, with the introduction of a new logo and TV advertising campaign to kick start a complete brand refresh.

The newly refreshed logo simply reads ‘Woodie’s’ to reflect customers existing affection towards the brand and the iconic jingle has also been revitalized with a lighter and more modern remix.

The brand refresh will be supported by a fully integrated marketing campaign including TV, radio and in-store display. The roll out will also include sponsorship as well as digital and social media programme. Woodie’s are working with new agency partners Rothco, who won a competitive tender process and Principles Design Consultants who have refreshed the logo and will support on in store brand identity.

Woodie’s has also launched a new advertising campaign ‘Start to Finish’ to reflect the journey customers take during a DIY project. The new TV advertising campaign is currently airing across national TV, national and regional radio and print.

Ruth Brett, Marketing Director, Woodie’s said; “Woodie’s is an iconic Irish retail brand and is much loved by Irish consumers. A key element of our brand refresh is to retain our strong Irish heritage and become more relevant to today’s consumer. We felt that the time was right to revitalise and modernise the brand and we’re now refocusing on what our core offering is, in order to offer our customers an enhanced shopping experience”.

The first Woodie’s DIY store opened in 1987, the brand has grown and there are currently 37 stores in Ireland serving 235,000 customers every week. Woodie’s has over 55,000 weekly visitors to its website which now offers greater choice, expert advice, improved navigation, a wider customer reach and mobile functionality.