Archive for February, 2013

PuddleDucks in the Press: Irish Times 13th February

Suzanne was interviewed and discussed PuddleDucks in an article in the Business Section of the Irish Times this week. A link to the article is here and the full text is below:

What is distinctive about your business?

We specialise in quality outdoor wear for children. Our products are completely waterproof but also soft and lightweight. Durability is also key. These practical clothes are made to last. Even after years of constant wear and washing, they keep on going.

What has been your major success to date?

Survival and organic growth. We set up the company in 2005 and even through the recession our sales and profits have continued to increase year on year. Increasingly, we are selling overseas. This has come about entirely through referrals and repeat business.

We now ship regularly to more than 15 countries and have a growing customer base in the US, Canada and Russia.

What has been your biggest challenge?

The one we are currently facing – taking PuddleDucks to its next level of growth. It is very difficult for an online retailer to really grow if they are only selling to the Irish market, so we want to build on our current export market and drastically increase it in several key areas.

IMG_Four in a row

What key piece of advice would you give to someone starting a business?

Believe in your products and love your customers. A large proportion of our sales are from repeats and referrals. We believe this is because we back up quality products with the highest level of customer service.

Who do you admire most in business and why?

Anita Roddick of The Body Shop. She started her first shop on a shoestring as a means of supporting her family but went on to have more than 1,000 shops in 40 countries.

She achieved this through customer loyalty and people wanting to be part of the “feel-good factor” created by the Body Shop at that time.

I also really admire her outlook on corporate responsibility. At a time when it was unheard of, she saw business in the wider context of a world that should respect animals, nature, people and employees.

What do you think the Government should be doing to stimulate the economy?

Boost consumer confidence by taking the uncertainty out of any future tax increases and spending cuts. Retailers depend on consumer confidence to maintain and increase sales.

The lead-up to the budget each year causes consumer anxiety about what’s going to be announced. This has a direct and negative impact on spending.

Also, there should be more support for Irish online retailers to sell at home and abroad which, after all, is an export business.

At the moment, 75 per cent of all online spending by Irish consumers goes outside the county. Government agencies should recognise this and help boost the home-based e-commerce sector to redress the balance.

What’s the biggest mistake you’ve made in business?

In the first few years we sold directly from our website but also sold the kids’ waterproofs wholesale.

However, we soon found we were spending a lot of time processing wholesale orders for very little gain. Now we only sell direct to the public.

What’s your business worth and would you sell it?

To us it is invaluable and currently we would not sell, as there is so much potential for growth.

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Valentines Day Draw: Win a “Feed your Body” Gift Set from Bia Beauty

We’re delighted to bring you a yummy Valentines Day Draw with Bia Beauty. Cork-based Bia Beauty specialise in hand made 100% natural skin care products that sound good enough to eat!

One lucky person will win a “Feed your Body” gift set containing a refreshing Detox Body Scrub and a deliciously scented Apple Blossom Body Butter, perfect for keeping your skin in tip top shape!

All you need to do to enter the draw is to answer this simple question. The answer can be found on the Bia Beauty home page.

Name one other product from the Bia Beauty range (excluding the Detox Scrub and the Body Butter)?

Check out the answer on the Bia Beauty website here.

Email your answer to Please also include your name and contact phone number.

Please read the T&C’s below before entering.


Terms and Conditions:

  • Draw closes on Sunday 17th February at midnight
  • One winner will be drawn at random from the entries received
  • By entering the draw, you will added to the Bia Beauty mailing list. You can unsubscribe at any stage. If you’d rather not join, please let us know in your entry email.
  • Only one entry per person please. Multiple entries will be disqualified
  • The winner will be announced here and on the PuddleDucks Facebook page

Lastly, huge thanks to Tracey at Bia Beauty for the genrous gift of the prize.

************* Update 20th February *************************

Many thanks for all the entries for the Bia Beauty Competition. We have drawn one winner at random and the winner is Roberta Dowling from Co. Kilkenny. Well done, Roberta and thanks again for all your entries.




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