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Press release

Uber Chief to speak at IoD Young Directors’ conference

Kieran Harte to discuss the rapidly-changing technological landscape and Uber’s journey to success at the Grant Thornton-sponsored event

Technological advances are transforming the transport industry, according to Kieran Harte, General Manager in Ireland & Northern Ireland of taxi phenomenon Uber.

Kieran will be discussing the importance of adapting to new technology in achieving business growth, as well as Uber’s rapid development from start-up company to a multi-billion dollar transport business, at the Young Directors’ Conference hosted by the IoD and sponsored by Grant Thornton NI on 3rd June in Riddel Hall.

The theme of the event is ‘Achieving Success in the Digital Age’. Speakers also include highly-acclaimed ‘Tweeting Goddess’ Samantha Kelly, the founder of Social Media Summit Ireland as well as practical masterclasses from Dean Langasco, Digital Training Manager at The Web Bureau and John McKee, Chief Executive of Linkubator.  Attendance at the event is not restricted to IoD members.

Speaking ahead of the event, Mr Harte spoke of his intention to communicate the story of Uber and how it might inspire young leaders to make a similar leap and start up their own technology enterprise.

He said:

“I am very excited to be speaking at the IoD Young Directors’ Conference in June, having only recently launched our Uber service in Belfast.

“Technology in the travel industry has continually adapted in recent years and has utterly transformed the way we get ‘from A to B’. As General Manager of Uber in Ireland and Northern Ireland, I have seen first-hand the impact of new technology on the taxi industry and I am looking forward to sharing these insights with guests and fellow speakers.

“My aim is to encourage as many business leaders as possible to embrace new technology and make the leap in developing their own business ideas.”

The event is also sponsored by Power NI, Barclays and Maserati, with the latter set to showcase new Maserati vehicles at Riddel Hall during the event.

Louise Kelly, Audit and Assurance Partner at lead sponsor Grant Thornton NI, commented:

“At Grant Thornton, we encourage a business culture of creativity and innovation, and are very aware of the importance of digital channels to achieving business growth.

“We work closely with SMEs and large corporates from across a wide range of sectors to deliver our business advisory services, and look forward to engaging with the young directors at this event.

“We are delighted to be sponsoring the conference and continue our successful partnership with the Institute of Directors. The conference promises to raise some exciting and thought-provoking discussions on the digital business environment and is also a fantastic opportunity for like-minded individuals to share their experiences and help progress their organisations.”

Neal Lucas, Chair of the IoD (NI) Young Directors’ Forum, said:

“The first Young Directors’ Conference is set to become a real highlight in the Northern Irish business calendar. It will be a hugely exciting event with a mix of keynote speakers, practical masterclasses and facilitated discussion designed to provide ‘take home’ tips and techniques.

“The IoD is committed to helping young directors enhance their skills and develop new business models and ideas. We are really looking forward to hearing what Kieran and Samantha have to say, and hope that as many young directors as possible take advantage of this incredible opportunity to learn from industry experts.

“We warmly welcome young and aspiring directors to join us at this conference.”

For more information and to book a place at the conference, visit