30th April 2020 - Page 13



BALMORAL SHOW
FARMWEEK
MAY 09 2019
13
Online comparison service for
farmers launching at Balmoral
A
PARTICIPANT on Ulster
Bank’s Entrepreneur Accelerator programme is
set to launch a new farm
equipment comparison
website at the Balmoral Show.
Middletown husband and wife
team Oliver and Karen McDonald,
pictured, have created a comparison website that simplifies
the process of buying farming
equipment, allowing purchasers
to make better informed decisions. FarmCompare.com compares the best offers from top local
and national dealers, ensuring
farmers get what they need from
a reputable dealer and most
importantly, for the best value.
As a farmer for many years,
Oliver often encountered difficulties when it came to upgrading
his equipment.
“Every time we went to buy new
machinery for our farm we were
faced with the same problems
when choosing products. Information was scarcely available
and when it was, it was timeconsuming to collate it all in one
place and difficult to compare.
“I’d often comment to my wife,
who was working in procurement
at the time, that there had to be
a way to streamline the process.
Overtime these conversations
became more serious and when
we heard about the support
Ulster Bank was offering to
entrepreneurs through the accelerator programme, we decided
to take the plunge.”
The site’s main aim is to put
the power back into the hands
of the farmer but it also has
functionalities designed to suit
dealers and manufacturers and
promises to give businesses a
direct line to heavily engaged
consumers from across the globe.
Karen, who looks after the day to
day running of the site, explained
the support they received from
the Accelerator programme had
been invaluable.
“When we joined the accelerator
programme back in 2018, we knew
we had a good idea but were
struggling to get in front of the
right audience and didn’t know
how to access funding.
“The mentorship we have
received at every stage has
enabled Farm Compare to grow
beyond its infancy stage and
now we are preparing to officially
launch the business at the
Balmoral Show where we will be
exhibiting in the FSB Pavilion.”
In addition to launching their new
business venture at the show, the
couple are also vying for success
in the livestock competitions and
will be exhibiting limousine cattle
on the opening day.
Gabi Burnside, Entrepreneur
Acceleration Manager with Ulster
Bank and Mentor to the
McDonalds, said the success
of Farm Compare had been
testament to the couple’s drive
and determination.
“We are incredibly proud to
see this business ready to go live
and have really enjoyed assisting
Karen and Oliver on their journey
to date.
“Our mission in the Ulster Bank
Accelerator Programme is to
equip entrepreneurs with the
tools and support they need to
start, scale and succeed so it’s
always very rewarding to see this
come to fruition.”
For more information, visit www.farmcompare.com
Farm Compare will be located at stand AP3 in the FSB Pavilion
for the four days of the Show.

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