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Macroom firms in Link up. - Irish Examiner Tuesday 25.6.02

ELEVEN manufacturing companies in the Macroom Co Cork area, who together have a combined annual turnover of €50 million and employ nearly 400 people, have combined forces to form Macroom and District Manufacturers (MDM).

The group, who operate on the principle of strength in unity, was formed by Tomás Healy and Denis McCarthy formally launched by Brian Crowley MEP.

Macroom went through a difficult phase with the closure of General Simiconductor in 2001. Although in recent times Elan has purchased the GI facility, the activities of MDM show that Macroom's other industries have continued to be active.

"Its all about sharing of knowledge and imformation. We use our combined force to assist both the business and local community of the Macroom area in general." said Mr Healy. MDM acts as a group purchaser, negotiator and lobbyist when required.

"We want to let people see that working together in such a manner can have comercial benefits." said Mr McCarthy.

"As a group we negotiate with certain suppliers to gain preferential rates. Its a win-win scenario for both the bompanies and suppliers.

Unlike many groupings MDM does not have a very formal structure, which has worked in its favour.

"We meet as is necessary but usually one a month or so." said Mr Healy.

Currently the companies that form the association are Alida Systems, Irish Moulded Products, Medico, Pleno Investments, Neville Brothers, Follain, Mark Eire, Ossian, Tasty Wrought Iron, Faul Engineering and O'Donovan Engineering.