Coca-Cola and Enterprise Ireland launch 2018 Thrive Project

Coca-Cola country manager manager Petre Sandru says it's important to nurture new brands through sharing expertise
Coca-Cola country manager manager Petre Sandru says it's important to nurture new brands through sharing expertise

Coca-Cola and Enterprise Ireland have teamed up for the Thrive Project, a six-month programme that will allow eight Irish food and drinks startups to learn and grow through insight, expertise and innovative ideas from some of the soft drinks giant’s global partners.



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11 September 2018 | 0

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Coca-Cola and Enterprise Ireland have officially launched the 2018 Thrive Project, a six-month leadership programme developed to inspire and nurture a new generation of food and drink companies to expand  beyond what they originally thought possible.

Through the project, now in its third year, these young companies – eight in total – will be in direct contact with some of Coca-Cola’s global experts, who will help to fuel their future growth by offering insight, advice, expertise and more.

As part of the programme, the eight entrepreneurs visited Coca-Cola’s headquarters in Atlanta for a three-day business boot camp. Here they received formidable insight into business strategy from senior executives in the company.

In addition to this visit, the companies participate in an Innovation and Strategy masterclass at Coca-Cola’s Western Europe Headquarters in London, and meet with business leaders from drinks brand Innocent, to learn about its developmental journey prior to beiong acquired by Coca-Cola. Furthermore, participants benefit from support from Enterprise Ireland in the development of a robust business plan and access to one-to-one coaching.

Petre Sandru, Country Manager, Coca-Cola Ireland said the company wanted to use its position as one of the most successful food and drinks brands in the world to share its expertise and give the next group of compaies the chance to do the same. “I am delighted that we are in a position to partner with Enterprise Ireland to give these eight great start-up businesses a boost,” Sandru said.  “Ireland plays a special role in Coca-Cola’s global system through manufacturing, R&D, sales, and corporate offices in Dublin, Ballina, Drogheda and Wexford. The Thrive Project allows us to leverage this special relationship between Ireland and Coca-Cola to help a new generation of local food and drink companies to grow.”

Amanda Ward, Programme Manager, Food Division, Enterprise Ireland said the organisation’s strategy is to support Irish businesses to build scale and expand their reach into international markets. “We have received excellent feedback from previously participating companies,” Ward said, “on how the programme encouraged them to innovate to compete and succeed in global markets. The programme allows the entrepreneurs to gain invaluable knowledge on how to go about scaling businesses and operations.”

Participants in the 2018 Thrive Project will graduate in January 2019.


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