Tuesday, 30th May 2017
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Wednesday, 24th May 2017

Michael Garland,

bizBoost Chair,

Waterford Business Group

Who’s battling for Waterford, now that the leadership contest is heating up?

“In the blue corner” we have Simon “The Cork” Coveney. “In in the other blue corner” we have Leo “The Lion” Varadkar. Two Fine Gael political heavyweights about to slug it out in a leadership contest. After the long and protracted retirement of Enda Kenny, we can now say for certain that this is a two horse race for the leadership of FG. Perhaps a new Taoiseach of this wee green isle as well.

With two contenders having been announced, each protagonist’s fight team, will start to prepare their “Big fight plan” on just how to defeat an equally youthful opponent. The two combatants are only 38 (Varadkar) and 44 (Coveney). They are literally “Babies”, in terms of a political career. It will certainly be an

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Wednesday, 24th May 2017

John Smiles

Qualified Financial Advisor

What has happened to GARS?

Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management published the prospectus for the two companies’ planned merger, which was announced earlier this year.

In 2016, GARS gross inflows fell by 40%, from £17 billion in 2015 to £10.2 billion. The full year results for 2016 showed Standard Life's multi-asset arm, which manages GARS, suffered a net outflow of £3.8 billion over the year.

According to the document, GARS saw outflows of £2.8 billion over the first three months of 2017.

Over 12 months to the end of April, GARS returned just 0.4% to investors. These returns compare relatively favourably to competitor products from Aviva and Invesco, with their Multi- Strategy and Global Targeted Return funds up 1.6% and 3.6% respectively.

One possible explanation for this flight from GARS might be volatility or the lack of it. Volatility measures the

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Wednesday, 24th May 2017

Business leaders from across the South East gathered in Kilkenny this week to explore how best to build greater management capacity within their businesses. The gathering took place in the Lyrath Estate Hotel, Kilkenny at a learning and development conference co-hosted by Waterford Chamber Skillnet, County Tipperary Skillnet and Carlow Kilkenny Skillnet. Over one hundred delegates from small, medium and large enterprises in counties Carlow, Kilkenny, Waterford, Wexford and Tipperary attended the conference.

Paul Healy, Chief Executive of Skillnets, opened the event and urged businesses to avail of the support available to them to build management expertise through their local Skillnets-funded training networks. “Skillnets provides funding to over sixty training networks; they in turn provide learning and development expertise, subsidised training and networking opportunities to businesses throughout Ireland. Enhancing management capacity, particularly in SMEs, is a national policy imperative and a

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Wednesday, 17th May 2017

Michael Garland,

bizBoost Chair,

Waterford Business Group

Cue the reviews!

On Sunday night the much anticipated “Redwater”, started on our national broadcaster RTE (it will be screened at a later date, on the BBC, in “Old Blighty”), stimulating much Facebook chatter, airwave media interest and lots of other social media attention.

You could not avoid the fact that you just had to be in front of the gogglebox, settled with a cup of tea, just after Jean delivered her Sunday night weather forecast. The families of Waterford sat around their “Custard and jelly”, like the good old days, and eagerly tuned in to see who they might recognise as an extra on the drama and what scenery they could identify, being a place they might have visited, walked or have swam.

The village of Dunmore East would broadcast the show “live”, on the biggish screen outside

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Wednesday, 17th May 2017

John Smiles

Qualified Financial Advisor

More pension reform is on the way

Pension reform and consolidation of defined contribution (DC) pension structures is high on the agenda of the Pensions Authority in the lead up to implementation of Institutions for Occupational Retirement Provision II Directive (IORPs II) and introduction of a Universal Pensions Scheme. The current deadline is Q4 of 2018 for rationalisation of pension products and Q1 of 2019 for IORPS II.

The Pensions Authority’s draft report on “Governance and Simplification of Supplementary Pensions” to the minister for social protection in January 2017 cites a clear objective “to improve as far as possible the outcome for pension savers”. The Pensions Authority has not yet elaborated on their definition of an “improved outcome for pension savers”, but one of the key published proposals is “the number of schemes in

Ireland should be reduced from the

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Wednesday, 17th May 2017

KBC Bank Ireland have announced that as part of

KBC Bright Ideas it has doubled its support fund to €200,000 and launched a new scheme for Ireland’s leading social innovators and entrepreneurs. KBC’s

Business Bright Ideas will assist for-profit organisations in the business of having a positive impact on a city or community by addressing a particular social need.

Following a judging process a top award of €50,000 will be granted to the winning applicant who can show how the funding will help have a positive impact on communities. A total of €100,000 will be shared among the top entrants.

Meanwhile KBC’s Bright Ideas community support initiative returns for a fourth year to support individuals and organisations which are transforming and improving the lives of others in their locality. KBC is calling on community groups across the country to apply for financial support for

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Wednesday, 17th May 2017

Sinn Féin TD and member of the Public Accounts Committee David Cullinane today welcomed the news that the Grace case whistle blower is to appear before the Public Accounts Committee in private session. The Waterford TD said:

“This is good news. The whistle blower requested this meeting. It is a request I supported and I am happy to say the Committee has agreed.

“The Grace whistle blower has done this state an enormous service at great personal cost.

“It is important for our work on the PAC that we are able to hear first-hand from the whistleblower.

“It is also important that the HSE appears before the PAC afterwards and answers questions and queries raised by the testimony of the whistle blower where possible given the ongoing investigations.”

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Wednesday, 10th May 2017

Michael Garland,

bizBoost Chair,

“The heat is on”

No, not the lyrics from that old Glenn Frey karaoke classic, from the mid nineteen eighties.

The Irish weather seems to have finally decided to turn up the thermostat. We are at long last beginning to see what many would constitute as summer! There have been blue skies spotted around the “Sunny South East” and temperatures, are eventually, ever so slowly creeping into the higher teens. This will all be very good news, for the many thousands of people coming to our hills and coastlines over the next number of weeks and months.

There can be no doubt, that the BBC drama series Redwater, a spin off from “Dum, Dum Dum...” Eastenders drama, filmed in and around Dunmore East last year, will attract additional interest in all things Waterfordorian. There are even rumours that one of the

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Wednesday, 10th May 2017

Wed, 15th May, 8pm in the Rainbow Hall, Kilmacthomas

Waterford Fianna Fáil TD is calling on those who want to want to protect the future of the post office network to attend her public meeting on Wednesday, 10th May at 8pm in the Rainbow Hall, Kilmacthomas.

“On the night, I will be joined by my party’s spokesperson on communications, Timmy Dooley who has consistently raised the precarious position of rural post offices, and is leading the charge for the Government to up its game, invest in the post office network, and secure its future.

“This is a chance for people in Waterford to raise their concerns, speak about how they see their local post office changing, and impress upon our spokesperson their demand for their post office to be protected.

“In recent weeks, we have heard that the Government are considering closing up to

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Wednesday, 10th May 2017

Expert View

John Smiles

Qualified Financial Advisor

The importance of investing globally?

The Wilshire 5000 Total Market Index is a widely used benchmark for the US equity market. You might guess that the Index is made up of 5,000 stocks but it actually contained only around 3,600 companies, as at December 31, 2016. The last time this index contained 5,000 or more companies was at the end of 2005. This mirrors the overall trend in the US stock market, which accounts for around half of the world’s total stock market capitalisation.

In the past two decades there has been a decline in the number of US-listed, publicly traded companies. Should investors in public markets be worried about this change? We believe not.

When looked at globally, the number of publicly listed companies has not declined. The number of companies listed globally has increased from about 23,000

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Letters to the Editor

  • OUR VIEW

    A Fair CopIn a similar manner in which the Irish people are supposed to think that there is a real difference between Fianna Fail and Fine Gael we are now supposed to think that there is a real and substantive difference between the two contenders for the Fine Gael leadership.If you are the sort of person who likes to get into heated debates over the number of angels that can dance on the head of a pin then you might be interested in trying to find out the real differences between the two men who a …

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