Conor Toland, marketing manager for Henderson Retail

Conor Toland, marketing manager for Henderson Retail

BRIEFLY OUTLINE YOUR BACKGROUND After graduating from University of Ulster in 2012, my first full-time job was working as an events assistant for Belfast City Marathon. This was a fantastic first rung on the employment ladder – working for Northern Ireland’s largest participatory sporting event was a great way for... View Article

Simon Layton, head of region for M&S Northern Ireland

Simon Layton, head of region for M&S Northern Ireland

WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND? I started in retail at 16, working for Boots, and loved the interaction with real people – especially as I worked on the photo counter, processing customers’ memories. I joined M&S through the Business Placement Programme in 2003, as part of my university studies, and found... View Article

Franck Brétéché, chef/owner of Mange Tout Café, Deli & Patisserie

Franck Brétéché, chef/owner of Mange Tout Café, Deli & Patisserie

BRIEFLY OUTLINE YOUR BACKGROUND I lived in Nantes, France until I was 19, where I trained as an apprentice in Patissier, Chocolatier, Glacier, Confiseur (pastry chef, chocolate maker, ice cream maker and sugar work). I moved to Ireland with my parents and brother in 1989. During this time, I have... View Article

Helen Porter, Co-owner of Ann’s Pantry in Larne

Helen Porter, Co-owner of Ann’s Pantry in Larne

WHAT IS YOUR CURRENT ROLE? Partner and owner of Ann’s Pantry, running the business in collaboration with my brother, John Agnew. BRIEFLY OUTLINE YOUR EMPLOYMENT HISTORY TO DATE I moved to London in the 1980s and worked for Harrods. I started out as a retail assistant and was promoted to... View Article

Alan Dorman,Trading Director, Savage & Whitten Wholesale (Today’s Group NI)

Alan Dorman,Trading Director, Savage & Whitten Wholesale (Today’s Group NI)

BRIEFLY OUTLINE YOUR EMPLOYMENT HISTORY I joined J&J Haslett (Mace & Holmes) within the buying department in the early 1980s, and worked within Haslett’s wholesale, retail and foodservice divisions as trading manager through all the various product categories over the years. In 2005, with the integration of Musgrave Group buying... View Article

Marie-Claire Caldwell, Marketing and Communications Executive for the Henderson Group

Marie-Claire Caldwell, Marketing and Communications Executive for the Henderson Group

BRIEFLY OUTLINE YOUR EMPLOYMENT HISTORY Prior to joining the Henderson Group, I was part of the marketing team in Texthelp, which is a global software firm that specialises in creating assistive technology solutions to help users overcome a wide range of literacy issues and, before that, I held the position... View Article

Alastair Bell, owner/manager of The Irish Black Butter Company

Alastair Bell, owner/manager of The Irish Black Butter Company

WHAT IS YOUR CURRENT ROLE? I am the owner manager of The Irish Black Butter Company, a new business specialising in savoury/sweet spread for retail and foodservice. The product is made from Armagh bramley apples, treacle, spices and a touch of brandy. BRIEFLY OUTLINE YOUR EMPLOYMENT HISTORY TO DATE Since... View Article

Johnny McDowell, owner, Indie Fude Deli, Comber

Johnny McDowell, owner, Indie Fude Deli, Comber

WHAT IS YOUR CURRENT ROLE? I own and run Indie Fude in Comber, a deli business specialising in artisan food and drink, especially from Northern Ireland. I also have a select number of suppliers from the Republic and Great Britain. As well as the shop in Comber, Indie Fude has... View Article

Caroline McCusker, Event Manager for IFEX with Fresh Montgomery

Caroline McCusker, Event Manager for IFEX with Fresh Montgomery

WHAT IS YOUR CURRENT ROLE? I am the events manager for IFEX and ScotHot, which is owned by Fresh Montgomery. At Fresh Montgomery, we specialise in trade shows for the food, drink and hospitality industries in Belfast and across the UK as well as Asia and South Africa. Our portfolio... View Article

Alastair Crown, Founder and Managing Director of Corndale Farm Charcuterie

Alastair Crown, Founder and Managing Director of Corndale Farm Charcuterie

BRIEFLY OUTLINE YOUR EMPLOYMENT HISTORY TO DATE  Background in electronics. Worked in sales for seven years and then moved into renewables sector in 2014. Always had a passion for food and high welfare meat, and those are the main principles on which Corndale Farm was established.  WHAT DOES YOUR ROLE... View Article