Channel Clusters

Channel Clusters

Aims & Objectives

SMEs in the food and drink sector in Ireland and Wales have to work with channel partners such as wholesalers and buying groups. It is recognised that SMEs find it difficult to find channel partners and develop a successful working relationship. The project aims to address these barriers to growth through clustering techniques.

Project Aims:

  • Establish 6 Cross Border clusters with 30 SME's around 6 strategic channel partners in the UK market
  • Increase competitive advantage through the cluster, with SMEs and the channel partner exchanging knowledge, sharing learning and devising joint solutions to innovate in management practices
  • Establish sharing activities in marketing between SMEs in Ireland and Wales
  • Tailor support to each SME to overcome weaknesses identified to develop new markets
  • Encourage research and collaboration to develop innovative new products, technologies and practices
  • Linking with HE/FE institutions
  • Optimise delivery patterns and raise awareness of the issue of food miles
  • Disseminate new management techniques to enhance cross-border business viability in 90 SMEs through improved business structures and systems

Activities will include: cluster meetings, one-to-one support, matching SME's to channel partners, study tours, workshops, sharing activities in research/ promotion to develop new products & processes.

Partner ERDF (€) Total Project Budget (€)
Menter a Busnes LP 607,052 809,405
Irish Exporters Association 562,500 750,000
Total 1,169,552 1,559,405
Location in Ireland and Wales where the project is carried out

Counties in Ireland where the project is carried out:

Carlow, Cork, Derry, Dublin, Kildare, Meath, Tipperary, Waterford, Wexford, Wicklow

Counties in Wales where the project is carried out:

Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Denbighshire, Gwynedd, Isle of Anglesey, Pembrokeshire, Swansea, Flintshire, Wrexham


Name Organisation Email Telephone
Bethan Jones - Channel Clusters project, Menter a Busnes, Science Park, Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, SY23 3AH, Wales.
Godfrey Lydon - Irish Exporters Association, 28 Merrion Square, Dublin 2, Ireland