The French Market


Entrepreneur: Siobhan & Pascal Bonnichon

Location: Pollboy, Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim

Established: 2004

Famous For: Suppliers of a wide range of quality and affordable French and New World wines

Supports received from Leitrim LEO: Trading Online Voucher, Sales and Marketing Workshops / Training courses, Mentoring

  • About The French Market:

The French Market was setup by Pascal and Siobhan Bonnichon in 2004. Pascal worked for a well-known hypermarket in France called Carrefour for 15 years and with the vast experience he gained during that time, decided to set up the business in Ireland. At that time, both Siobhan and Pascal weren’t quite sure what they wanted to do, however one thing was certain, they wanted to stay in the “Produits du Terroir” environment - wine and food. Since 2004 and their humble beginnings, they have established a large hotel & restaurant customer base throughout Ireland and later increased their non-perishable food portfolio supplying delicatessens and specialist food shops.

  • Challenges you faced when starting:

Like any new business there were lots of ups and downs when they started up. “Whilst it was extremely easy to set up a company in Ireland, much easier than in France, we found the administration side of things when importing wine difficult in the beginning.” Said Siobhan. Careful to start small and build on it, this is something they have been doing since. “We made mistakes of course and took risks, but that is how you learn.”

  • Key success factors:

When asked why she believed the company has grown into a sustainable business, Siobhan highlighted “Customer service is very important to us. Having a large variety of wines from all over the world and an extensive food range has enabled us to have a wide customer base.”

  • Impacts of Covid-19:

As all the hotels and restaurants closed during Covid, the business was badly impacted. They did however get great support from locals and indeed customers all over the country. “As loved ones couldn’t meet up for birthdays and anniversaries, gifts and hampers were very popular” explained Siobhan. “This kept us afloat until restaurants and hotels could re-open. The food side of the business was also an important source of income, fortunately.” 

  • Where can you purchase products from The French Market?

The French Market hampers & gifts can be purchased on their website -  They can also cater for parties, weddings, engagements or even if you want to buy a case of wine for a lovely evening among friends and family. Only a phone call away, they are happy to advise you or suggest a wine that are sure you will like.

  • Supports received through the Local Enterprise Office:

Our Local Enterprise Office gave us a great opportunity during lockdown to start our online sales and even before the pandemic through mentoring.  It is a terrific aid for all small companies in the region. During the pandemic they also created an ecommerce section on their website proposing Wine Hampers & Gifts which they are delighted with and has proved to be very popular.

  • Why Siobhan believes it is important to #LookForLocal

Still thinking about the impacts of Covid-19, Siobhan now believes that people get a truer picture of why shopping local is important – “We all realise that buying locally is fundamental in keeping people in jobs and sustaining small businesses, allowing them to develop and grow.”


For further information on The French Market

Contact:           Siobhan or Pascal Bonnichon

Phone:             071 9820976