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Tag Archives: Kevin Thompstone

Summer departure for Neil Pakey

Neil Pakey is leaving Shannon Group next summer, after its board opted not to renew his contract and Shannon Chamber has expressed disappointment at the Scot’s departure. Chamber president Kevin Thompstone said, “Neil has not just seen the connection between the airport and the region but made and reinforced that connection. He has contributed and delivered many innovative undertakings, which have benefited the airport, the region at large and the entire western seaboard.” Mr Thompstone, who served as chief executive of Shannon Development for eight years, added, “He has a track record of delivering for Shannon and the region. Shannon’s loss of this experience will be somewhere else’s gain.” December was a month of ups and downs for Mr Pakey, as days before it was announced that he would not have his contract renewed at Shannon, he received a Limerick person of the month award. Councillor PJ Ryan, cathaoirleach of the Shannon Municipal District, said he too was very surprised …

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Access and connectivity key

In a week dominated by aviation-related headlines, Shannon Chamber hosted a luncheon seminar where two key players in the tourism and travel sectors – Niall Gibbons, chief executive of Tourism Ireland and Suzanne Boda, senior vice president Asia, Canada, Europe and Cargo, American Airlines – were guest speakers. The lunch, sponsored by American Airlines, was held in the Radisson Blu Hotel, Limerick and attended by representatives from the business, tourism and hospitality sectors. Chamber president Kevin Thompstone said in his introductory remarks that access and connectivity is the key to increasing visitor numbers to the West of Ireland. “With just over 5% of international traffic to Ireland, Shannon delivers 15% of the West’s, 37% of Shannon’s and 12% of the South-West’s overseas holidaymaker bed nights. This demonstrates the link between access to Shannon and tourism activity in Shannon and the surrounding regions. The West has the product and the amenities and is proactively creating awareness, through Tourism Ireland, in international …

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Action plan for jobs on target

The Government is well on target with its Action Plan for Jobs strategy, according to Taoiseach Enda Kenny. “We are on course to exceed our initial target of 100,000 new jobs by the end of next year, he said at Shannon Chamber’s annual president’s lunch in Dromoland Castle today (Monday). Another jobs announcement today in Ennis shows that new jobs are being created across the country and not just in Dublin. The recent budget was designed to secure recovery further – promoting new jobs and investment in the regions, working across the economy and across the country with businesses like those represented here today. I am confident that the growing recovery of Ireland’s economy will have a positive impact on the Shannon Region.” Welcoming the Government’s support for Shannon, particularly the decision to enable Shannon Airport operate as an independent entity, as part of the recently established Shannon Group, Chamber president, Kevin Thompstone said that the risk of doing so is …

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Dougie responds to late call up

In a departure from its normal type of event, Shannon Chamber joined forces with mobile telecoms operator Three to host a morning conversation between rugby stars, former Irish and Leinster winger,  Shane Horgan and Munster’s Dougie Howlett in Dromoland Castle Hotel. In true rugby style, former All Black Dougie Howlett answered a last-minute call up to step into Ronan O’Gara’s shoes due to Ronan’s unfortunate unavailability for family reasons. A former Munster captain, Howlett was forced to retire from the professional game at the end of last season due to a shoulder injury. He has remained in Cork with his family and is now working as a Corporate Ambassador with the Munster Rugby’s Commercial Board. Undaunted by the task Howlett enthralled the audience with his recollections of playing for the All Blacks, his move to Ireland to join Munster Rugby, and his views on how the skills and disciplines amassed during a rugby career prepare players for the next phase …

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Another name for Shannon Free Zone

IF the Shannon Free Zone project was starting today, what would it be called? That’s the question Shannon Chamber president, Kevin Thompstone posed when addressing attendees at the chamber’s annual president’s lunch on Thursday. While the Free Zone has strong global brand recognition, Mr Thompstone suggested that in today’s environment, a descriptor such as Shannon Economic City or Shannon Economic Zone might better reinforce the concept that Shannon is not just a business park but a Special Economic Zone in Ireland offering a mix of airport, industrial, residential, commercial and green areas to facilitate economic activity. Almost 300 business people attended the lunch at Dromoland Castle to hear keynote speaker Barry O’Leary, IDA Ireland’s chief executive, comment on Shannon’s potential as an international investment location. “IDA is looking forward to working on behalf of Shannon and the wider region under a new structure. Our aim will be to support companies in the region, helping them transform their operations and also …

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