Economy Minister Gordon Lyons visited Mallusk Enterprise Park to learn about the work of the local enterprise agency in assisting and enabling local businesses and entrepreneurs to set up and grow.
At the meeting Chief Executive of Mallusk Enterprise park Emma Garrett introduced the Minister to two local entrepreneurs; Lawrence McGrath and Stephen McLoughlin.
Lawrence McGrath is the founder of Torax BioSciences Ltd. which designs, develops and manufactures IVD reagents and novel quality controls to be used in clinical laboratories. It is one of the fastest growing companies in the UK with subsidiaries and manufacturing centres being established globally.Economy Minister visits Mallusk Enterprise Park to learn about the growth support needs of indigenous businesses
Stephen McLoughlin is the founder of Stem Systems Ltd. a progressive and versatile, managed IT services provider with clients across the UK and Ireland.
Both tenant businesses have achieved significant business growth over the past 2 years which has meant that their workspace requirements have also increased, in the case of STEM Systems rising seven fold from an initial 370 square foot need to 2,510 square foot.
Mallusk Enterprise park is a significant economic enabler. It currently provides business accommodation to 55 businesses employing 230 people which generates in excess of £7 million in wages for the local economy. The team in the enterprise agency supports individuals at every stage of their entrepreneurial journey and over the past year they assisted 70 individuals into self-employment and provided almost 3,490 hours of mentoring to new and existing businesses.
The industrial and office units in the enterprise park are consistently fully let, with the team receiving significantly more enquiries for business premises than can be accommodated in the bustling 50,000 square foot site.
Mallusk is a member of both Enterprise Northern Ireland, the voice of enterprise for those supporting and developing small business in Northern Ireland and Development Trusts Northern Ireland, which promotes the collective ownership of public assets for public good and enterprise for sustainable development.
Chief Executive of Mallusk Enterprise Park, Emma Garrett welcomed the opportunity to meet the Economy Minister and said:
“Small businesses are the backbone of the Northern Ireland Economy. I was delighted to be able to introduce the Minister to some of our tenant companies who represent this key part of our economy. The visit gave me the opportunity to highlight the ongoing work of our Business Advisory team and external associates in relation to nurturing new business start-ups and supporting existing businesses to develop and grow.”
Speaking after the meeting, Minister Lyons said:
“It was a pleasure to visit Mallusk Enterprise Park to discuss the support it provides to many local small and medium sized businesses. These businesses are crucial within our economy as we work to rebuild and recover stronger than ever after Covid-19.
“Our 10X Economy vision is about making Northern Ireland the most exciting place to do business and I want everyone to feel part of that. Our first class reputation for innovation is key as we plan for the future so it is always great to meet with successful small businesses and entrepreneurs who are already leading the way.”
Economy Minister Gordon Lyons:
The Economy Minister’s responsibilities include economic policy, higher and further education, employment and skills programmes, employment rights, consumer affairs, energy, telecoms, tourism, minerals and petroleum, European Fund management, Insolvency Service, Credit Unions and Societies, and statistics and economic research.
Mallusk Enterprise park:
Local Enterprise Agency: Mallusk Enterprise park (MEP) comprises of 50,000 sq ft of workspace and is a leading provider of enterprise support at pre-start start-up and growth stages of business.
MEP is a social enterprise with charitable status.
Surplus profits generated from property rental and business consultancy provision is re-invested into the local economy via provision of free business support.
MEP is a member of Development Trusts Northern Ireland (DTNI)
and the Enterprise Northern Ireland (ENI) Network of 28 Enterprise Agencies operating across 44 locations in NI. Emma Garrett (CEO) is also an ENI Board member.