InterTradeIreland appoints Devenish CEO Richard Kennedy as new chairLeigh Mc Gowranon January 24, 2022 at 06:00 Silicon RepublicSilicon Republic


Economic development body InterTradeIreland has announced the appointment of Richard Kennedy as its new chair.

The Sligo native began his commercial life growing up on the family-owned livestock mart in Aclare. He went on to secure a degree in agricultural science from University College Dublin.

Kennedy is CEO of Belfast-based Devenish Nutrition. Under his leadership, the agritech giant has transformed from a company focused on the Northern Ireland market to an international research, development and innovation business trading in over forty countries.

Devenish has experienced huge growth in the past 20 years, going from £5m in turnover and 23 employees in 1997, to more than £250m in turnover and 500 employees in 2018.  Kennedy was named EY Entrepreneur of the Year and International Entrepreneur of the Year in 2019.

“Richard is an expert in growing a business in new markets and has an outstanding record of achievement,” InterTradeIreland CEO Margaret Hearty said. “We have no doubt that he will make a very significant contribution to InterTradeIreland. We look forward to his innovative vision and considered input.”

Commenting on his appointment, Kennedy said: “I am delighted to be appointed chair of InterTradeIreland, a vital organisation that helps power economic prosperity across the island of Ireland. This is a pivotal time to be joining the board, as InterTradeIreland builds on the next chapter of its evolution and growth. It’s an exciting prospect to work with the rest of the board, CEO Margaret Hearty, the senior leadership team and all of the InterTradeIreland team.”

InterTradeIreland said it will continue its mission to help firms develop on both sides of the border. To date over 48,000 small businesses have been supported by InterTradeIreland to identify and develop trade and innovation opportunities. The organisation said it has created over 18,000 new jobs and generated more than €1.3bn in business development value, with cross-border trade currently sitting at €8.4bn, its highest level in 20 years.

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