Express your interest in joining the LINC Engineering Cluster

Who are LINC? - LINC is a member led engineering cluster supported by Local Government.

LINC is a Member led engineering Cluster located in North Cork and East/West Limerick. Initiated in 2014 as a group of engineering firms came together to discuss ways to increase competitive advantage for the region. LINC acts as an exchange forum where members can build links, share experiences and undertake joint commercial activity.

The cluster is based on the knowledge that Engineering firms thrive when they work to support each other. The cluster focuses on bringing solutions to industry challenges for engineering firms in the Midlands using peer learning and leveraging existing Government supports. Typical topics of conversation include;

  • Business development online and offline;
  • Attendance at national and international trade shows;
  • Supply chain development
  • Industry standards and certification
  • Supports and finance
  • Recruitment and team development
  • Other relevant topics proposed by members4

How can I join LINC?

What we are about

  • Our mission is to bring companies together to increase the competitive of the region.
  • In doing this we have created an eco system of supports and peer engagements; Foster a culture of innovation and job creation within the region; created a central platform for learning.
  • If the region is competitive we are more attractive for customers; suppliers and attracting talent.

Who is LINC for?

  • LINC is for any engineering firm in the East/ West Limerick and North Cork region who have an ambition to grow their business.

Our Members

  • We currently have over 50 members from the small geographical region which covers 19 villages and towns. We have a core group of 22 members engaging regularly. The network structure is in place. Due to Covid 19 our members meeting fortnightly using online platforms.

How is LINC Managed

  • The network is managed by network manager Theresa Mulvihill who implements the actions and tasks as requested by member and the steering committee. 
  • The Steering committee is made up of member companies and drives the agenda of the Cluster based on industry needs.  The steering committee meet every 6 weeks.
  • The Executive committee is represented by Government agencies and the Steering Committee. They meet quarterly. The role of Executive steering committee is to sit on sub –groups and provide linkages and knowledge between Government agencies and member companies.
  • The network manager connects member companies; government agencies; identified opportunities and manages the operations and implements actions as agreed with the steering committee.

What we do for members

  • LINC gives support to Engineering firms in the North Cork / East West Limerick region in the following ways;
  • Coordination of events of relevance and interest to the members. ONLINE Events only for the last 12 months.
  • Supporting and promoting peer learning; inter- company networking, collaboration and best practice. The power of focused, structured networking between members cannot be overstated or undervalued.
  • Central hub of information in relation to Government supports across training; funding; innovation and recruitment. The wide range of supports in Ireland is testament to enterprise supports, however navigating these supports is skill in itself. Members share their learning and with the guidance of LINC – supports are clear for members to navigate.
  • Focused engineering specific network, member led and focused on solving key common issues as a group.

Background to LINC

  • LINC Network is an engineering cluster located in North Cork and East West Limerick. Initiated by a group of engineering firm owners in 2014 the network has grown from strength to strength.
  • In 2018 funding was secured though the REDZ fund under an application from the Local Enterprise Office in Limerick. A network coordinator was engaged to recruit new members, complete a needs analysis, put structures in place and engage with local Stakeholders such as third level Universities: Regional Skills Fora; Local Enterprise Offices; IDA; Enterprise Ireland and other relevant groups.
  • In 2019 funding was secured to continue the network into 2020 under the LEO Competitive Funds. LINC network has proved an essential service to members during the Covid period. LINC has become a hub for knowledge sharing where members meeting online, fortnightly to discuss relevant issues, gain information in relation to supports, give and get business.

Future Ambition

  • It is our ambition to widen the group geographically and to attract new members to the LINC network. We intend to extend the boundaries to areas of Kerry; Tipperary and rest of Limerick over the coming period.

Cluster offering phase 2

  1. Establish LINC as its own entity.
  2. Hire a dedicated LINC team and it’s own premises to drive LINC internationally on behalf of member companies.
  3. Have sales representatives driving national and international sales to LINC network members.
  4. To have a support team with appropriate resources and staffing in place dedicated to LINC network.
  5. To have a strong and robust financial structure in place.
  6. Governance structure in place appropriate for auditing purposes.
  7. To build a financially sustainable model for LINC as a member led model into the future.
  8. To build on the success of the existing network and develop relationships of trust, honesty and integrity to drive collaborative opportunities.
  9. To continue to create awareness of LINC as a brand nationally and internationally.

Why become a member of LINC?

Benefits of becoming a member company include:

  • Access to valuable peer learning and knowledge sharing
  • Ability to showcase company to an extended online audience and raise awareness of products/services
  • Ability to access private resource section, with useful information, industry data and other sector-specific knowledge
  • Ability to access private membership area for exchange of ideas and opportunities
  • Opportunities to network with industry and peers
  • Access to industry relevant news and events
  • Receive one to one mentoring to assist you in progressing your business in the following areas:

a)       Business development – particular focus on sales materials and sales presentations

b)      Researching international sales opportunities

c)       Opportunities for R&D within your company

d)      Research and development of standards and certification as required by International and Multinational firms

e)      Lean standards

f)        Digital marketing expertise

  1. Attendance at two International Shows as part of the LINC Network. A small contribution may be requested from member companies. Show will be identified based on LINC members’ core target markets.
  1. Support in identifying and applying for state funding to support the following activities:
  • Job creation
  • Research and Development
  • Lean manufacturing
  • Internationalisation
  • Digital marketing to support overseas sales campaigns
  1. Support for international show preparation. Pre-event preparation; during event meetings and post event follow-up.
  1. Access to ongoing industry-based training and development with LINC partner agencies.
  1. Access to ongoing supports to assist member companies to build and strengthen relationships.
  1. Be part of a strong Engineering Cluster where peer learning, trust and support are core pillars to company relationships. 
  1. Access to business development opportunities nationally and internationally


How can I join LINC?

What will be required from me?

  • Requirements of LINC member companies;

1)      Initial conversation to assess suitability for the group

2)      Engage in Training Needs Analysis

3)      Complete Member company surveys

4)      Host one members meeting

5)      Act with integrity, respect and confidentially of members companies

6)      Engagement and attendance at member meetings and networking events

Who is the Network funded by?

  • This Network is an initiative forming part of the Regional Enterprise Plan for the South West and Mid-west region, funded under the Enterprise Ireland LEO Competitive Fund and delivered by the Limerick and Cork North and West Local Enterprise Offices in association with other enterprise and innovation stakeholders. Members also pay a small financial contribution toward expenditure.