PCH International chief urges firms to seize more opportunities abroad

ONE of the country’s leading businessmen has urged Irish companies to seize more opportunities abroad.

The founder and chief executive of PCH International, Liam Casey, said Irish firms don’t realise how competitive they can be.

“Put an Irish business up against anyone and they’ll win,” he said.

He pointed to a situation a few weeks ago when his supply-chain management firm were pitching for a contract in California.

“There were 10 companies that went for the contract and there was a shortlist of three firms drawn up. The three of these firms were Irish,” he said.

“There are huge opportunities for Irish businesses to play in the space. We have as good an opportunity as anybody else,” he said.

PCH established a base in Shenzhen, China, a few years ago and Mr Casey said businesses should not try to pretend they are experts in China.

“You need to be comfortable, being uncomfortable,” he said.

Mr Casey who is a former winner of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year, said Irish companies must think global.

“We have to go out and look for opportunities. They are not going to come to us,” he said.

“What happens in the budget is not going to change anything for global companies,” he added.

“One of the things in Ireland is sometimes we don’t put enough value on salesmanship because that is so important. Salesmanship and branding are the things that are going to create value,” he said.

“It’s not going to be easy. But we’re Irish and we don’t do easy,” he added.

Mr Casey was speaking at the IT@Cork annual conference yesterday.

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