Champion Green rallies Support for Small Business with ‘Change is in the Air Campaign’


Marian O’Gorman is joined by Tanaiste Leo Varadkar in launching Champion Green for 2021

Champion Green, the national movement to drive recovery of small business, has launched its 2021 programme in support of the local economy, with the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar TD, welcoming the ‘support local’ initiative.
New plans for Champion Green include a local loyalty app and a National Champion Green Week, all of which will encourage and reward consumer support for local brands and businesses, as well as facilitating SME recovery.
The initiative is backed by a €1m investment to drive consumer support for local enterprise and to help SMEs adapt their businesses.
Supported by Kilkenny Design and Visa, in association with Retail Excellence, Small Firms Association and Chambers of Commerce Ireland, the #ChampionGreen movement is about highlighting the simple ways everyone can make a difference. The campaign encourages the public to shop and to ‘click local’ to help businesses in their community bounce back and thrive again.
Welcoming the campaign, the Tánaiste said:
“This year’s St Patrick’s Day will be a lot different than previous years unfortunately, but we can still make the most of it. A great way to celebrate would be to support your local businesses, and this Champion Green campaign is a great reminder to people to consider what is on their doorstep and shop local. Hope is on the horizon. There will be brighter days ahead and, in the meantime, we need to all look after each other and support our local communities.”
Commenting on the launch, Champion Green founder and Kilkenny Design CEO, Marian O’Gorman says; “Change is in the air as we look forward to the country reopening in the coming months. We are encouraging business owners to keep their spirits high, keep driving their business online, and grasp the green shoots of recovery”.
Announcing the new national Champion Green marketing support and consumer advertising, Marian O’Gorman said the movement’s continuing priority is to drive the renewal of local communities and local enterprise.
Marketing Toolkit
To support SMEs’ consumer marketing, businesses can access a new marketing toolkit, free of charge. By signing-up on the Champion Green website they can also avail of business support, webinars and the latest news, while national campaign advertising explains how money spent locally supports local jobs and services.
Champion Green social media channels are also used to motivate support for local businesses and to communicate offers from small businesses countrywide.
“Small businesses are the backbone of our local communities, but so many have been hit hard by the pandemic,” said Dominic White, Acting Country Manager, Ireland, Visa.
“We’re committed to supporting small businesses in Ireland, and proud to be working hand in hand with Champion Green to celebrate our small businesses and the value they bring to our local communities.
“Our partnership with Champion Green forms part of Visa’s long-term commitment to champion small businesses. Visa has been drawing on its network of industry, technology and community partners to provide much needed assistance to the small business sector as they rebuild for recovery.”
Recent research commissioned by Visa* indicated that consumers are keen to support local business wherever possible, with 75% of people saying they feel better about themselves when shopping locally.
Businesses and service providers across Ireland are rallying to support the renewal of small firms. An Post created a Champion Green postmark and display material for Post Offices, encouraging people to shop locally, while also providing parcel delivery support to local businesses newly adapting to ecommerce.
Aviva Life and Pensions Ireland DAC rolled out an innovative scheme whereby a vacant shop unit from its Irish commercial property fund portfolio was awarded to a small business, free of charge, as a pop-up shop last summer. The recipient was Irish design brand, Jill & Gill, who have been allocated a short-term licence for a pop-up shop in a prime location at No 5 St Stephen’s Green in Dublin city centre. Aviva continues to be supportive of Champion Green.


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