Devan Hughes co-founded the grocery delivery platform Buymie in 2015 and is now its chief executive. After launching in Cork in between lockdowns in the autumn, the fast-growing start-up is preparing to enter new cities in Ireland, the UK and beyond. Hughes tells Thomas Hubert about the European markets he is considering for expansion and the growing number of personal shoppers working with Buymie to perform deliveries – many coming from the devastated hospitality industry. He also defends the gig economy model and, having raised over €10 million, discusses how few venture capitalists are prepared to back consumer-facing businesses in Ireland.
What do Harrison Ford, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Lopez, Van Morrison, Michael O’Leary, Paddy McKillen, Gerry Adams and Peter Robinson all have in common? Answer: They have all been represented in libel cases by the Belfast lawyer Paul Tweed. In a podcast with Sam Smyth, Tweed talks about how he built his practice and his work defending the reputations of some the most famous and wealthy people in the world. Arguing that Irish defamation laws favour the rich, he says the system needs to be changed so that people without means defend their reputations. He also reveals how smear campaigns can often be designed to discredit a celebrity, and why he does not believe in the concept of libel tourism. Looking to the future, Tweed says the state needs to deal with the biggest threat of them all: social media giants.
The people of America have spoken. As of now, no one is quite sure just what they have said. In this podcast, economist Stephen Kinsella and investment strategist John Looby talk to Ian Kehoe about the US presidential general election and what it means for the country’s fiscal and economic strategies. They also discuss what the potential outcomes of the election mean for Ireland, specifically on FDI and Brexit negotiations.
John Feehan and Derek McGrath are two of the country’s top sporting administrators. Feehan is the former chief executive of Six Nations Rugby and the British & Irish Lions, while McGrath is the former CEO of the European Rugby Cup and the Curragh Racecourse. In recent weeks, they have launched a new business, Sport2Sport, which aims to help sports organisations, event owners and brands deal with Covid-19. In this podcast with Ian Kehoe, Feehan and McGrath speak about the impact of the crisis on the sports industry – from governing associations to media rights' holders to sponsors. They also explain the rationale for their new business and outline who their target customers are. Both men also talk about their own backgrounds in sports administration, and what it was like to run some of the world’s biggest rugby tournaments. Looking to the future, they explain how Covid-19 will change sport going forward, and why sporting bodies need to increase their interactions with fans.
Ruth Medjber has 2020 all mapped out. The award-winning music and portrait photographer was covering Glastonbury for the BBC, had an exhibition in Australia and was touring in the US. In March, however, it all fell apart. However, using some of the entrepreneurial zeal she inherited from her parents, the Dublin photographer launched an online store and a range of t-shirts. However, it was her series, Lockdown Portraits in a Window, that caught international attention and landed her a book deal with Penguin Random House. In this podcast with Alison Cowzer, Medjber talks about pivoting her business as a result of the crisis, and about the impact of Covid-19 on the creative industries. Medjber, who trades as Ruthless Imagery, also talks about touring with Hozier, the importance of developing an online following, why artists should never be too proud to take a job, and the racism and sexism she encountered in her career.
“I think the battle for the future in terms of our international competitiveness isn’t going to be based around where the big factory gets located. It is actually going to be based around people, skills, talent”
Simon Harris has one of the longest job titles in government, but he says he is essentially the Minister for Skills. Now free from daily crisis management in the Department of Health, he argues that his new role is about helping to prevent a lost generation by redefining how people view skills, training and further education. In this podcast with Stephen Kinsella, The Currency’s Chief Economics Writer and a former acting chair of the Higher Education Authority, Harris outlines his agenda for third-level and further education, addressing issues such as lifelong learning, digital literacy, gender diversity and the rigidity of the university system.
In a rare and revealing interview, the former manager of U2 Paul McGuinness reflects upon his career – from the early days of trying to secure gigs for the fledgling band right through to negotiating with Steve Jobs over a collaboration with Apple. McGuinness also talks openly about his relationship with the band members and explains the deals and commercial moves that made U2 both a musical and financial juggernaut. McGuinness talks about the people he encountered along the way, and reveals why the U2 organisation was the “Harvard or Oxford” of rock and roll. Revealing how the activities of some Russian oligarchs in the south of France inspired him to create the hit television show Riviera, he also talks about why Neil Jordan left the project. He explains why rich lists are vulgar and outlines why he still turns to Bono for financial advice.
Journalist Dion Fanning covered Irish football for much of the John Delaney era. In this podcast, he talks to Paul Rowan and Mark Tighe, the two Sunday Times journalists whose work brought an ignominious end to the Delaney era, about their new book Champagne Football. The podcast offers a deep insight into John Delaney – his rise, reign, and fall, and explains how he operated with abandon, a self-confidence underpinned by the belief he was infallible. It also explains the efforts Rowan and Tighe went to in order to expose what was going on in the FAI.
Two days after a landmark €17.75bn budget designed to protect the economy from a pandemic, The Currency’s Chief Economics writer Stephen Kinsella spoke with Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe about budgetary philosophy, the economics of deficits, and the power of the state. They also spoke about how the strategic objective of Budget 2019 compares to Budget 2021, about his plans for Budget 2022, his letter to his successor, about the choice not to go for a big billion-euro policy shift on green policies and what he’s learned over the last few years.
Sustainability is in vogue as everyone from corporate execs to secondary school students are becoming more earth-conscious in their decision making. Fashion enthusiast Aisling Byrne decided to make a successful business out of sustainability by tackling fast-fashion. She set up her company Nuw, a subscription-based clothes swapping app, two years ago with her friend Alison Kelly. This year they expanded their app across the UK and Ireland and are currently crowdfunding to fuel further growth. In this podcast with Cait Caden, Byrne talks about why she never thought she'd become a businesswoman, what it's like setting up a business as a young woman in Ireland, and much more.