THE National Franchise Centre was featured in the first episode of RTE’s The Business this week.
The show, fronted by former RTE business editor George Lee, featured the O’Connell Street centre in a five minute segment profiling employment initiatives.
The Limerick Chamber-backed scheme, which has just welcomed its second batch of students, matches individuals up to various franchises based on their competencies.
Edel Walters and Brian Ambrose, who were among the first cohort of students were profiled on the prime-time show, giving the centre a welcome boost.
Limerick Chamber president Kieran MacSweeney said Mr Lee spent six hours in the city appreciating what the centre had to offer.
Former Dell employee Mr Ambrose owns the local franchise for Munster Tools. He used the funding he got under the European Globalisation Fund, and also won the Chamber’s FAST business plan competition.
He now travels across the region to distribute his products to various garages.
Meanwhile, Edel, who has an engineering background, is now a franchise owner with Healthreach. She runs various information sessions and nutritional consultations as part of her business, and has recently been able to take on two people.
Mr Lee said the focus of this series of The Business, is to find thousands of potential jobs to plug the unemployment gap.
“There’s been such a focus on recapitalising the banks and bringing down the deficit, and meanwhile the rate of unemployment is still going up. So the series launched The Business Jobs Crusade, part of RTE’s Local Heroes campaign which aims to stimulate jobs and growth,” he said.
“If we’re serious about job creation, we need to stop just thinking about price and start looking at how this money will benefit the wider economy,” he said.
He has travelled nationwide examining different areas, from imaginative uses for vacant units to new ways to help people start in business.