Bright spark: Google selects Limerick farmer’s son’s new business

Donal O'Regan

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Donal O'Regan

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donal.oregan@limerickleader.ie

Bright spark: Google selects Limerick farmer’s son’s new business

Brendan Halpin, Kilmallock, owns and operates a new website called WeSwitchU.ie

A KILMALLOCK man, who grew up on a farm, has bravely started a business at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

Brendan Halpin owns and operates a new website called WeSwitchU.ie The company was named as one of 15 Irish businesses to be selected for the Google Adopt a Startup programme. It is an initiative that serves as a mentoring programme for the successful candidates, with a mission to accelerate the growth of high-potential, innovative, Irish startup businesses.

Brendan - son of Kathleen and the late John - said growing up on a farm means, “It’s all hands on deck”.

“Growing up in a family business enterprise is the perfect background for a startup and entrepreneurship,” said Brendan, who is a chartered accountant by profession with a background in renewable energy. His older brother Noel runs the family dairy farm in Quarry Hill, Kilmallock.

While starting a business at this time seems unfortunate, Covid-19 has changed how people do a lot of their business - more and more of it is now online, he says.

“Residential customers and farmers in particular have better things to do with their time trying to find the best and cheapest plan for their energy use,” said Brendan.

WeSwitchU.ie promises to “take the stress and hassle out of switching energy providers”.

“The company assists farmers and residential customers to engage with the energy market, reducing their energy bills and carbon footprint each year.

“With ten suppliers now active within the residential energy market in Ireland, it can be a daunting prospect to figure out the best options in terms of both budget and environmental impact. Many farmers and homeowners are also unaware of their annual energy consumption.

“WeSwitchU.ie evaluates each customer’s individual needs by performing data analytics on their farm and household energy consumption, enabling them to secure the best deal tailored to their needs. The company will navigate the many offers available, ensuring that each customer saves on their energy bills every year, while also reducing carbon emissions,” said Brendan.

The service is completely free.

“Many farmers are unaware that their farm meter is on a residential tariff and switching energy suppliers is one of the quickest and easiest ways of reducing their energy bill.

“From the outset, a supplier will offer an amazing deal to get a customer on board, but these discounted tariff plans are generally for 12 months and can soar after this point. If a farmer signs up with WeSwitchU.ie, we source and switch to the best deal for both their farm meter and household meter every year,” said Brendan.