AIB Fund Assisted Start Up, MicksGarage, Hits Top Gear
In 2006, following two years of trading, online retailer MicksGarage.ie found itself with significant expansion possibilities selling car parts and accessories direct to the consumer. The case was strong for a strategy of continued growth in Ireland and expansion into the UK, however, funding capital was needed to execute the plan.
The company now delivers across mainland Europe and, in 2011, expects to achieve sales of over €3.5 million
Co-founders and brothers, Ciaran and Mick Crean, contacted Dublin Business Innovation Centre (DBIC), joint investment manager of the AIB Seed Capital Fund; where the export driven growth opportunities of MicksGarage were immediately appreciated. A team of consultants were appointed to work with the company and the result was an ambitious investor ready business plan accompanied by a strong investor pitch.
In December 2008, MicksGarage received its funding requirement of €560,000, a proportion of which came from the DBIC managed AIB Seed Capital Fund and the remainder from Enterprise Ireland and private investors. With the funding in place, MicksGarage was in position to achieve dominance in the Irish market and dramatically increase its business in the UK, moving on to establish a website dedicated to the UK market. The company now delivers across mainland Europe and, in 2011, expects to achieve sales of over €3.5 million.
Excellent strategic business guidance is key to the success of any start-up and DBIC was well positioned to support MicksGarage in this respect.
Commenting on the success of MicksGarage, Ciaran Crean, managing director said:
"Crucial for any company, but in particular a start up, is the ability to move quickly when an opportunity is identified. We were fortunate that, at a crucial time in our development, we were able to raise the funds and avail of business expertise to help take us to the next level".
Today, MicksGarage delivers across Ireland, the UK and mainland Europe and employs 20 people. The company is headquartered in Park West Industrial Park in Dublin and has been the proud recipient of the Golden Spider Award for Best Retail and Home Shopping Website.
MicksGarage attracts over 300,000 website visitors per month, a figure that has doubled every year since its launch.