Speaking at Inspiring Your Success, an Ulster Bank event in Belfast to coincide with RBS Focused Women’s Week, Graham said: “Recently we announced that we have dedicated £1 billion for business lending this year and held support and networking events across Northern Ireland to help companies in planning for 2014 and beyond.”

Other speakers at the event  included Kate Marshall, Chairperson of Women In Business Northern Ireland, Anne McReynolds, CEO of The Mac and Lorna Robinson, Managing Director of Cloughbane Farm Food.

Magic ingredient

Passion is the magic ingredient for small and medium sized businesses, according to Mary Ann O’Brien, founder of Ireland’s chocolate brand Lily O’Brien’s.

Speaking at a second Inspiring Your Success in Dublin, O’Brien said support from Ulster Bank has also proved very important in establishing and growing her business.

She explained how her Co. Kildare business, which employs more than 260 people at peak production times, could potentially double in size following a recent investment deal backed by Ulster Bank. Lily O'Brien's has been a customer of Ulster Bank for over 20 years and the bank provided term facilities and invoice financing facilities.

Gemma Lynch, Director of Corporate and Institutional Banking at Ulster Bank said the bank was delighted to be able support significant expansion of Lily O’Brien’s: “Ulster Bank is committed to understanding the needs of business women and fostering female talent across all areas of Irish Business.

“Every year, more and more women take the step of starting their own business. We pride ourselves on being a bank that supports female entrepreneurship and female business leaders.”

Business Women Can

To help women across Ireland who are establishing their own enterprises, Ulster Bank has established Business Women Can, a mix of online and local support which aims to offer help and understanding on the specific challenges to women starting, running or managing businesses.


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