David is ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ finalist

David Conaghan, co-owner of Chocolate Clothing, Foyle Street, Derry, who is one of the finalists in the Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.
David Conaghan, co-owner of Chocolate Clothing, Foyle Street, Derry, who is one of the finalists in the Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

One of Derry’s brightest young business owners has reached the final of the Northern Ireland ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ competition.

David Conaghan, co-owner of Chocolate Clothing, Foyle Street, Derry is one of eight finalists in the competition which celebrates the spirit of entrepreneurship that’s very much alive and kicking in Northern Ireland’s young people.

Northern Ireland is heavily reliant on a buoyant small business sector and the awards, which are organised by Advantage,in partnership with Northern Bank and supported by Invest Northern Ireland, recognise and promote the success of our brightest young business stars in an effort to encourage other young entrepreneurs to follow suit.

Chocolate Clothing is a global online fashion retailer offering the very best in young fashion products across lines in menswear, womenswear, footwear and accessories from leading brands sourced from around the globe. Aimed at fashion forward 16-35 year-olds globally, it aims to provide its customers with excellent service and a wide choice of the very best in young fashion. It currently exports to more than 30 countries worldwide, its unique visitors are doubling on a monthly basis and it is expanding to be the biggest online fashion retailer in Ireland. To contact the Foyle Street store, telephone 71369023, find Chocolate on facebook -www.facebook.com/pages/Chocolate-Clothing/191380858618 or follow it on twitter - http://twitter.com/#!/ChocolateDerry

Praising the young entrepreneurs who have reached the final of the competition, Rory Clarke, Corporate Acquisition Manager, Northern Bank and member of the judging panel said: “These prestigious awards recognise and showcase Northern Ireland’s young business talent. Along with my fellow judges, I have been so impressed by the calibre of those that entered this year. It is encouraging to see such ambition and drive, despite the still uncertain economic environment. Of course it is often in the most challenging times that innovation will flourish and these awards certainly demonstrate that there is no shortage of entrepreneurial spirit amongst our emerging young business leaders.

Frankie McCourt of Invest NI said: “I was encouraged by the calibre of the eight finalists competing for the title of Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Each of these talented young entrepreneurs has demonstrated that they have the commitment, drive and commercial creativity to succeed in business. They are all excellent role models for our future generations and have the potential to make significant contributions towards the growth of our economy.”

Gerry Ford, Director of Advantage who manages the event praised the creative and innovative nature of all the applicants. “The difference in this year’s awards is palpable. We had 133 applicants from every corner of Northern Ireland, their creative mindset, their sheer grit and their determination to succeed, particularly in the current climate, is an inspiration. They should be rightly recognised as the lifeblood of the Northern Ireland economy.”