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Are you up for the Challenge? - CDE Enviro from Cookstown are!

19 Oct 2018

About the company

CDEnviro delivers integrated solutions for clients’ waste in terms of landfill diversion, wastewater recycling, environmental remediation and the generation of energy from waste. Just six months after completing the programme in March 2018, CDEnviro has created a new strategic innovation department and has a pipeline of 46 viable business concepts. The company has plans to undertake its largest ever research and development (R&D) project to create pioneering solutions for companies affected by changing landfill waste classifications. CDEnviro intends to bring its solution to market in 2019.

Their experience of Challenge

Sean Dobbs, strategic innovation lead for CDEnviro, outlines the benefits of participating in the InterTradeIreland Challenge Programme:

“We have always been an ambitious company. CDEnviro has a long track record of creating unique, innovative solutions, reflected by our multiple patents. We believe zero waste is achievable. However, to get there we as an industry must take on and find a solution to the seemingly unsolvable issues, something we are proud to say we have a strong track record of. We do this by working with our most valued asset, our customers, who typically bring us their biggest needs and go on to partner with us to co-develop solutions, to yield truly world class results. We have been looking at new sectors and niche markets since 2015. However, given the higher level of risk we knew that while we had the ideas and skills to disrupt these industries and bring solutions, we didn’t feel that our process to vet ideas was as reliable as it could be. The Challenge Programme helped us to integrate our skills and creativity across the business and really structure this validation process that has proven crucial to unlocking these higher risk opportunities.

The senior management team immediately saw the benefits of participation in the Challenge Programme and the program has embed key skills at the core of the business.”

InterTradeIreland’s Challenge Programme is aimed at ambitious SMEs and allows business leaders to transform their company’s prospects in just nine months by learning and applying the most effective methods of generating, marketing and launching new products and services.

InterTradeIreland support

Alan Morrow, InterTradeIreland Challenge Programme manager, explains:

“Challenge companies experience a transformative change in innovation culture, management capability and performance as the programme is focused on embedding best practice in innovation management at the core of participating businesses.

“Only 25 companies are taken through Challenge each year and interested, innovative firms are welcome to register their interest for our upcoming briefing session in November 2018. Following application and acceptance onto the programme, participating firms attend workshops to clearly define their innovation priorities and receive intensive in-house coaching support to progress these into new products. There are no costs for SMEs to take part and the benefits that can be reaped are immense.

“Challenge leaves SMEs with a proven, adaptable and repeatable innovation process that allows them to commercialise ideas quickly with less cost and reduced risk, enabling a reboot of current processes, ultimately generating a growth pipeline.

“We are delighted that CDEnviro has truly seized the Challenge ethos by proactively making changes that have led to the creation of new roles and processes thus enriching innovation across the business. Undertaking their largest ever R&D project is testament to their growth ambitions and impact that the Challenge Programme wields.”

CDEnviro and the future

Discussing the future for CDEnviro Mr Dobbs says: “The support from InterTradeIreland was excellent. We have an ever growing pipeline of ideas and concepts, which currently sits at almost 50. To be able to quickly and efficiently research and either validate or discredit any and all opportunities, and having confidence that we are solving the biggest problems first is an exciting prospect for the entire team and a very strong capability to have.

“We are opening up new markets for the business thanks to our major new R&D project. By researching and reviewing forthcoming changes to legislation, in terms of the classification of materials as waste, we found that many currently don’t have a treatment solution because certain materials haven’t previously been classified as waste. We have been able to create an innovative process to manage and treat waste within these new categories, resulting in this material being diverted from landfill, which is something we are very proud of.

“These changes will have a significant impact on businesses across many sectors and as industry pioneers we aim to be first to market with our technology. This R&D project marks a multi-million-pound investment for the business, which we are hopeful of securing a level of funding to support. We are looking forward to having the first part of our solution in market in early 2019 and are excited about the growth this project will provide the business and the significant boost in employment for the local economy, that comes with a project of this scale.”

How to get involved in Challenge

InterTradeIreland’s Challenge Programme is open to the senior management teams of financially viable companies with between 10 and 250 employees which are currently exporting or considering exporting and who are serious about growth through innovation.

Mr Dobbs concludes: “As well as positive impacts right across CDEnviro, I personally found the Challenge Programme very beneficial. The InterTradeIreland team has been a great support and they don’t just provide training and leave; they are happy to go above and beyond, maintaining the relationship with individuals and companies with whom they work.

“I would recommend that other business leaders should consider the Challenge Programme to increase innovation outputs. CDEnviro is always evolving, and the Challenge Programme has helped us to continue to do so.”

If you interested in what the Challenge Programme offers please contact the team directly: call 028 3089 8131 or email

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