Affidea investing €500,000 in fourth ‘walk-in’ ExpressCare Clinic in Ireland to treat patients quickly for minor injuries and illnesses

–       New facility in Naas, Kildare will create 10 new roles initially and is part of €1.8 million investment by Affidea in the Naas Clinic over past four years

–       ExpressCare Clinic’s already operating in Tallaght, Santry and Cork are designed to relieve the burden on busy hospital A&E departments

Affidea, Ireland’s leading independent provider of diagnostic imaging and outpatient services, is investing €500,000 in the establishment of a fourth ExpressCare Clinic in Ireland. The new facility is co-located with Affidea’s existing diagnostic clinic in Naas, Co. Kildare and will open to the public in the coming weeks. 

ExpressCare clinics by Affidea are ‘walk in’ facilities that treat minor injuries and illnesses that don’t require a hospital visit. The business already operates an ExpressCare Clinic in Tallaght, just 200 metres from Tallaght University Hospital, Northwood Business Park in Santry and at The Elysian in Cork. The investment in the fourth facility is part of an overall €1.8 million investment by the company in the Naas clinic over the last four years, with diagnostic capacity at the clinic doubling in that time.

Offering fast turnaround times without an appointment, ExpressCare Clinics treats minor injuries and illnesses such as fractures and sprains, lacerations requiring stitches, sports and DIY injuries, minor burns and scalds, eye and ear injuries, insect and animal bites, infections and rashes. Children over the age of one are also treated, eliminating the need for a stressful visit to a hospital A&E department with an injured child. All ExpressCare Clinics are open from 10am to 10pm, 365 days a year.

Affidea employs more than 300 professionals across Ireland and 10 new positions will be created at the new ExpressCare Clinic in Naas, with more expected to come on stream as the business grows. A further 20 jobs have been created during the construction period.

As well as operating the four ExpressCare Clinics in Dublin, Cork and now Naas, Affidea also has ten state-of-the-art diagnostic centres and two managed hospital services across the country that provide MRI, CT, Ultrasound, X-Ray and DEXA scan facilities*. This offers patients unrivalled access to advanced diagnostic imaging which has previously been an issue in Irish healthcare.

Affidea operates the youngest and most modern fleet of MRI facilities within the Dublin region with an average age of less than three years, enabling it to provide high end diagnostic imaging in modern, comfortable settings. In 2018, the company provided medical services to over 200,000 people in Ireland and that number will grow further in 2019.

Affidea Ireland, which was established here in 2007, is part of the European Group, Affidea, which has 260 advanced diagnostic imaging, outpatient and cancer care centres across 16 countries. Focused on providing high quality affordable care, the company sees over 7 million patients per year, performs over 14 million examinations annually and works with over 9,000 professionals, of which 3000 are medical doctors.

Barry DownesCEO of Affidea Ireland, says“Our ExpressCare Clinics are designed to benefit the Irish healthcare sector by relieving the burden placed on Irish hospitals by large numbers presenting unnecessarily in hospital A&E departments across the country. Instead of attending a busy and stressful A&E environment, people can instead attend an ExpressCare Clinic to have their minor injury or illness treated quickly, professionally and to the highest standards in a comfortable outpatient environment.

“We’re delighted to be opening our new ExpressCare clinic in Naas, offering patients even more convenience and easy access to care in the Naas area. All patients attending our ExpressCare Clinics can also access our other on-site diagnostic imaging resources such as MRI and X-Ray services to ensure the right diagnosis is made first time. Our scale offers us the resources, facilities and efficiencies to deliver our results quickly, so that you can get the right treatment as soon as possible. It also frees up capacity for those in need of care in our hospitals.”

Affidea ExpressCare provides services to all patients who attend on a fee for service basis, and it’sa covered benefit for health insurance providers Laya Healthcare and Irish Life Health.

For more details, check out or

follow @AffideaIreland on Twitter and Facebook

The Sunday Times unveils ‘On the Shelf’ – a video series that reveals which books make it onto some of Ireland’s best-known authors “Top 5” list

  • Eithne Shortall, author and Chief Arts Correspondent with The Sunday Times, interviews Catherine Ryan Howard, Donal Ryan, Patricia Scanlan, Joseph O’Connor, Shane Hegarty and John Connolly to find out what books have influenced them
  • Bewley’s teams up with The Sunday Times to support ‘On the Shelf’
  • Episode No.1 featuring Joseph O’Connor will be available on 6th October

The Sunday Times has unveiled a new online video series featuring six of Ireland’s best-known authors – and reveals what books have inspired, amused, entertained or influenced our greatest writers!

Entitled ‘On the Shelf’, each video features Eithne Shortall – Chief Arts Correspondent with The Sunday Times and a novelist in her own right – visiting authors in their homes and writing rooms to check out what books line their bookshelves. Over a cup of Bewley’s tea or coffee with Eithne, they then reveal their five favourite books – the ones that influenced them, made them laugh, cry or perhaps want to become a writer in the first place. The authors also chat about their career, goals and hopes for the future. The first episode featuring Joseph O’Connor will be available on the 6th October with the remaining five released every two weeks after.

Interviewees include:

  • Joseph O’Connor, journalist, lecturer and award winning contemporary and historical novelist
  • Catherine Ryan Howard, internationally acclaimed bestselling crime writer from Cork 
  • Donal Ryan, twice longlisted for the Man Booker Prize
  • Patricia Scanlan, bestselling author of over twenty books
  • Shane Hegarty, author of the author of the tremendously popular Darkmouthseries
  • John Connolly, the Sunday Times, Irish Times, New York Times bestselling Irish author of the Charlie Parker novels

Underlying The Sunday Times commitment to books and authors every week in the newspaper’s Culture supplement, ‘On the Shelf’ is made in association with Bewley’s because a cuppa and a great book are the perfect combination!

Karen Price, Creative Director with News Ireland, said: “The aim of the campaign is to acknowledge and celebrate the pivotal role that writing and reading plays in all aspects of Irish life, while acknowledging the breadth of brilliant writing talent in this country. Authors and books are at the heart of feature coverage in The Sunday Times and this is why we want to encourage more people to pick up a book and enjoy the pleasure of reading.”

Jason Doyle, Managing Director of Bewley’s added: “Bewley’s has a long-celebrated history of bringing artists and creatives from all walks of life together to share experiences and be inspired.”

“Bewley’s Grafton Street has played an important and historic role in Irish literary, cultural and social life with connections to Irish writers and artists; Yeats, Patrick Kavanagh, Samuel Beckett and James Joyce to name a few. Our partnership with The Sunday Times gives us a fantastic opportunity to celebrate our literary heritage in the modern era with a new audience. We are hugely excited to be playing a part in this series championing contemporary Irish authors.”

To find out more about ‘On the Shelf’ and to watch the videos, please visit or search for #ST_OnTheShelf on The Sunday Times Facebook or YouTube page:


Lisney celebrates 50 years in Cork

Commercial and investment markets continue to grow, but onus is on industry and Government to tackle suitable affordable housing problem, say property experts

Lisney is celebrating 50 years in business in Cork. The leading property consultants first began with a 500 square foot office on Grand Parade in 1969 and has experienced consistent growth and success since then.

Ireland’s largest independently-owned property advisory company has been operating nationwide for over 85 years with offices in Dublin, Cork and Belfast.

Involved in all aspects of the residential, commercial, licensed and investment property markets, Lisney employs 120 staff nationwide, working in a range of agency and advisory services departments.

Speaking about Lisney’s path to 50 successful years in Cork, Edward Hanafin, Director at Lisney Cork says: “Over the years the Lisney team has navigated and chartered choppy waters – stemming all the way back to the closure of the Dunlop and Ford plants in 1983 and 1984, right through to the present day.

“None of this could have been achieved without the skill, expertise and drive of the agents and surveyors who have come through our doors over the last 50 years. We pride ourselves on putting people at the heart of what we do and generations of families continue to come to us to advise and guide them when buying and selling their properties.”

Margaret Kelleher, Director at Lisney Cork, assessing the current market in Cork says:

“Cork’s property sector is currently strong, both residentially and commercially, showing a resilience over the years that has led to ongoing development, even in times of slow economic growth. The city’s investment market remained busy in the last quarter, recording a turnover of €150 million. This accounted for almost 12.5% of the market nationally during that period. 

“There are challenges to circumvent and overcome in the residential sector, with a shortage of suitable and affordable housing in some areas. 

“Moves will have to be made by the industry and by Government to ensure we are able to come up with solutions to these problems. Reducing VAT on the cost of delivering new homes and retaining the Help to Buy Scheme are two such measures that we believe will have a big role to play.

“For our part, Lisney plans on being around for at least the next 50 years to play a hands-on role in the further development of Cork’s property landscape.”

Singing enthusiasts and music lovers urged to warm up their vocal chords for National Singing Week running from 7th – 13th October

  • Singing and musical events happening in communities nationwide
  • Organised by Sing Ireland in association with Mental Health Ireland to encourage newcomers and remind everyone that singing contributes to physical, mental health and well-being

National Singing Week, hosted by Sing Ireland in association with Mental Health Ireland, will take place from October 7th to October 13th this year.

Sing Ireland develops, supports and promotes all forms of group singing across the island of Ireland and hundreds of singing events will be happening nationwide to mark National Singing Week and highlight the range of singing groups operating in various communities.

With studies[1] showing that singing as part of a group can provide a wide range of wellness and mental health benefits, such as improving breathing, posture and muscle tension as well as lessening stress and anxiety, now is the time to get involved with your local singing group!

Sing Ireland has over 300 member groups (representing tens of thousands of singers), including children’s choirs, workplace choirs, youth choirs, hospital and care home choirs, choir clubs, university choirs, church and cathedral choirs, choral societies, and choirs for those in older age or active retirement. Whether it’s singing popular hits, classical, jazz, Gregorian chant, hip-hop, gospel or folk – there is a group to suit everyone!

So, if you’ve always nurtured a desire to sing in a group or choir or just make contact with other singing enthusiasts and music-lovers in your locality, you’ll find the full list of events taking place in your local area for National Singing Week on

As group singing is scientifically proven to relieve anxiety and elevate endorphins, Sing Ireland is delighted to team up with Mental Health Ireland for National Singing Week 2019.

Singing has also been found to be particularly beneficial to people living with Dementia, as it evokes emotions and brings memories and can manage stress and stimulate positive interactions.

Dermot O’Callaghan, CEO of Sing Ireland, says: Anybody who sings in a choir will tell you that participating fully can bring huge rewards, both in the sense of wellbeing and joy evoked by singing, and in the pride of participation to the best of your ability. Group singing is like a team sport – your contribution is as important as that of every other singer in the ensemble.”

National Singing Week represents a wonderful opportunity for newcomers to get involved and try singing as a mood enhancer. There are events happening in all counties, from open rehearsals to community choir recitals. We even have pram jams where buggies and babies can bop along to the beat!”

“At Sing Ireland, we are looking forward to encouraging more people to get involved to experience the positive impact singing can have on their health and creativity. We encourage everyone to get involved and see what’s happening in their area during National Singing Week. Give it a try – it really is true that singing can change your life.”


Enet scoops National Innovation Award in European Business Awards 2019

Award comes in recognition of Enet’s culture of innovation and will be presented at Gala Ceremony in Warsaw this December

Enet, Ireland’s largest open-access network operator, has won the National Innovation Award as part of the European Business Awards (EBAs), one of the world’s largest cross-industry, cross border business competitions.

Enet was chosen from 2,753 businesses across Europe named as ‘Ones to Watch’ in a list of business excellence published in July. The company was then selected as a National Winner by a panel of independent judges including business leaders, politicians and academics. Enet will now go on to represent Ireland in the final stage of the competition.

Enet operates the largest alternative wholesale telecoms network in Ireland, which comprises of over 5,400km of fibre infrastructure, including the Irish State’s Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs), proprietary metro networks, a unique dark fibre backhaul infrastructure, as well as one of the largest licensed wireless networks in the country. With over 120 employees based in Limerick and Dublin, Enet currently works with over 80 different retail service providers to bring high-quality broadband and wireless to more than one million end users.

Enet won the award in recognition of its Enet Connect platform, a market first which makes Enet’s proprietary infrastructure, as well as that from third parties, easily accessible to retail service providers through one simple platform.

Enet will head to Warsaw, Poland, on the 3rd and 4th of December to complete a final round of judging and attend a summit to engage in business issues, as well as the Gala Ceremony where the overall category winners for the 2019 European Business Awards will be announced.

Speaking about the recognition, Peter McCarthy, Enet Group CEO, said: “We are delighted to have claimed the National Award for Innovation in Ireland. At Enet we strive to put our customers first in everything we do. Our culture of innovation is focused on delivering for our customers and making our services better, cheaper, or more efficient.

“As a wholesaler, we don’t compete with our customers and indeed we only succeed when our customers succeed. This is a significant recognition of that commitment to innovation and customer service, and we’re looking forward to the EBA Gala Ceremony in December.”

Adrian Tripp, CEO of the European Business Awards, said: “This is a significant achievement and Enet is an outstanding leader in their field. To be chosen as a National Winner means you show great innovation, ethics and success and are one of the best businesses in Europe. We wish Enet the best of luck in the final round.”

The European Business Awards is now in its 12th year and its primary purpose is to support the development of a stronger and more successful business community throughout Europe. This year it considered over 120,000 businesses from 33 countries. Sponsors and partners include Inflexion, Germany Trade & Invest and Cision PR Newswire.

CPA Ireland members discuss changing economic climate at special event sponsored by Bibby Financial Services Ireland

Speakers include Dr Aisling Conway Lenihan of Cork Institute of Technology and John Finn, Managing Director of Treasury Solutions Ltd.

The impact of currency fluctuation and foreign exchange (FX) on Munster businesses tops the agenda as members of CPA Ireland gather at the Imperial Hotel in Cork for a special event, sponsored by Bibby Financial Services Ireland, a leading provider of financial support and funding solutions to Irish SMEs.

The event features leading speakers from academia and Ireland’s SME sector to existing and upcoming financial challenges for businesses in the face of Brexit, and ahead of the upcoming budget. Speakers at the event include:

  • Dr Aisling Conway Lenihan, Lecturer in Economics, Cork Institute of Technology

Dr Conway Lenihan will deliver an economic update for the region and the challenges and opportunities for SMEs operating in Munster

  • John Finn, Managing Director, Treasury Solutions Ltd.

Treasury Solutions provides niche treasury and corporate finance services to businesses, and John will discuss the future of FX and interest rates and how these will affect SMEs

  • Stephen McCarthy, Head of Sales for Munster, Bibby Financial Services Ireland

Stephen will discuss the roles of invoice finance and trade finance in helping SMEs safeguard and improve cashflow, as well as growing their business in new markets

Bibby Financial Services Ireland recently announced the opening of its new Cork office, located at Unit 10, South Bank, Crosse’s Green in Cork city centre, to offer bespoke financial assistance and a range of products tailored to support small and medium-sized businesses.

The latest SME Ireland Confidence Tracker, published by Bibby Financial Services Ireland, found that 63% of SMEs believe the government should do more to assist the sector, with 71% identifying the need for additional tax breaks.

Bibby Financial Services Ireland is part of Bibby Financial Services Group, a leading global financial services partner operating in 40 locations across 14 countries. With 40 years’ experience, the business has a funding capability that exceeds £1 billion and an annual collective client turnover of £10.1 billion.

For more information about Bibby Financial Services Ireland, please visit:

Find us on LinkedIn or follow us on Twitter @BibbyFinanceIE

65% of people in Northern Ireland believe the economy will suffer as a result of Brexit according to new research from Core

  • 58% of people in Northern Ireland are pessimistic about the economic situation for the year ahead
  • Northern Irish consumers mainly concerned about their car costs and groceries

Almost two thirds (65%) of people in Northern Ireland believe the economy will suffer as a result of Brexit according to new research from Core, Ireland’s largest marketing communications company. The ‘NI Brexit Barometer’ research was conducted to measure how the six counties in Northern Ireland feel towards Brexit and how it will impact their lives.

According to the survey, 58% are pessimistic about the general economic situation for the year ahead. While 16% of people in the south said managing the impact of Brexit should be the national priority, 24% in Northern Ireland said Brexit should be the region’s main priority. This was the number one concern for the younger generation with 29% saying it should be the top priority.

While flying to the UK was the main concern for people in the south, Northern Irish consumers were mainly concerned about their car costs and groceries. 63% believe buying petrol and diesel will be a worse experience post Brexit, while 61% are worried about purchasing groceries post Brexit.

One of the greatest concerns Northern Irish people have is the impact Brexit will have on crossing the border, particularly those under 40. This figure is higher in the south with 69% saying they were anxious about the impact on travelling across the border. 67% of people in the south are concerned over the impact Brexit will have on the peace process, while this figure is less in the North with 58% believing Brexit will impact on relationships between the UK and Ireland.

People believe they will be worse off when it comes to a range of purchasing behaviours, particularly food and fuel:

  • 63% concerned about buying petrol and diesel post Brexit
  • 61% concerned about purchasing groceries post Brexit
  • 60% of Northern Irish people are concerned about cross-border travel
  • 67% in the south are concerned about the impact Brexit will have on the peace process
  • 58% believe Brexit will impact on relationships between the UK and Ireland

Finian Murphy, Marketing Director of Core, says:What we can see from this second wave of the Brexit Barometer is that while there are many areas which British and Irish politicians cannot agree on, the citizens of the North tend to be in agreement with the citizens in the south. The young generation in particular understand that every day essentials like buying food or fuel will be impacted and that in the long-term, they worry about the peace process and that the economy will suffer.”

Core’s Northern Ireland ‘Brexit Barometer’ report is based on a sample size of 300 people, representative of the Northern Ireland population. The Research was conducted between 2nd September – 8th September 2019.

Core employs a team of 310 people and consists of nine practices – Creative, Data, Investment, Learning, Media (comprising of Mediaworks, Spark Foundry, Starcom and Zenith), Recruitment, Research, Sponsorship and Strategy. Core has been voted Agency Network of the Year for the last six years at the Media Awards and the company was also recently voted one of the top workplaces in Ireland by the Great Place to Work Institute for the tenth year running.

The NI Brexit Barometer can be downloaded at


Half of UK SMEs predict a recession, with significant knock-on effects for Irish firms says research from Bibby Financial Services

Brexit burden draining resources with 17% citing rising material costs as a significant burden

Half of UK SMEs believe the country will fall into recession this year, while 44% are struggling with cashflow as they prepare for Brexit. This is according to the latest SME Confidence Tracker from Bibby Financial Services in the UK. As the Brexit deadline approaches, Irish SMEs are being warned that this downturn in the UK will have important knock-on effects.

The report, which surveys 1,000 business decision-makers on a quarterly basis from across the UK, found that rising material costs are a significant burden for 17% of businesses, with 15% also feeling the strain of increasing competition. As SMEs ramp up Brexit preparations, there has been a six per cent rise (to 29%) in the number of SMEs actively using funding in Q2 of 2019. Seventy-two per cent of SMEs are also investing an average of £16,400 more than predicted at the end of Q1.

According to economic analyses from the PMIs and the Office for National Statistics, it appears that this additional investment is being used to offset risks associated with a no-deal Brexit. Sixty-nine per cent of UK SMEs are preparing to further invest in their businesses in Q3 as they attempt to protect themselves from any negative impacts of Brexit.

Given half of UK SMEs believe a recession is likely, many have turned to quick-fix forms of funding, with over a quarter (26%) of those needing finance making use of credit cards, bank overdrafts, and borrowing from family and friends.

Mark O’Rourke, Managing Director of Bibby Financial Services Ireland, said: “Despite the events of recent days, the threat of no-deal hasn’t gone away, and this research highlights the extent to which UK SMEs are already feeling the financial strain of Brexit – and should act as a warning to their Irish counterparts. For Irish SMEs who trade with the UK there will be significant knock-on effects due to the disruption to raw materials and commercial activity that Brexit will cause.

“Irish SMEs will need to think strategically about how they can best protect their business – whether this means looking to new export markets or adopting alternative financing methods as a means of safeguarding cashflow.”

Sharon Wiltshire, UK Commercial Director at Bibby Financial Services, said: “Ordinarily a rise in the number of companies investing in themselves would be a boon for the economy. But with increasing competition, rising materials costs and the broader economy stalling, businesses appear to be sourcing finance to cope with these challenging conditions rather than investing for growth.

“With the current uncertainty, it has never been more essential for SMEs to be aware of all the funding options available to them before they commit to more borrowing.”

Bibby Financial Services Ireland is a leading provider of financial support and funding solutions to Irish SMEs. The company helps businesses to thrive and grow in domestic and international markets by providing tailored and flexible funding solutions for a range of scenarios including cashflow funding, new equipment purchase, growth and expansion, management buy-ins and buy-outs, refinancing, corporate restructuring and mergers and acquisitions.

Bibby Financial Services Ireland’s funding portfolio includes confidential invoice, trade and export finance, foreign exchange services, bad debt protection and specialist funding for a range of sectors. With a 95% client satisfaction rating, our clients have confidence that we support their business.

Bibby Financial Services Ireland is part of Bibby Financial Services Group, a leading global financial services partner operating in 40 locations across 14 countries. With 40 years’ experience, the business has a funding capability that exceeds £1 billion and an annual collective client turnover of £10.1 billion.

The 2019 Q2 UK SME Confidence Tracker is available here:

For more information about Bibby Financial Services Ireland, please visit:

Find us on LinkedIn or follow us on Twitter @BibbyFinanceIE

Meet the Olympic rowing duo the O’Donovan Brothers at the FBD Insurance stand at the National Ploughing Championships 2019

  • Free tea and coffee, great competition prizes and a dedicated Kids Zone all available at the FBD Insurance Stand at Block 2, Row 17, Stand 381

Ever wanted to meet the Olympic silver medal rowing champions Paul and Gary O’Donovan?

Well, thanks toFBD Insurance, Ireland’s only truly indigenous insurer, you can! The rowing athletes will be at the FBD Insurance stand all day on Wednesday, 18th September at the 2019 National Ploughing Championships in Ballintrane, Fenagh, Co. Carlow and they are looking forward to meeting everyone who pops into the stand that day. The dynamic duo will be on hand to answer any questions you have or pose for a photo.

In addition to being one of the main sponsors of the National Ploughing Championships, FBD Insurance is also a proud sponsor of Team Ireland, on their journey to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Olympic Silver Medallist and World Champion, Gary O’Donovan said: “Paul and I have been Brand Ambassadors for FBD Insurance since 2016 and we’re delighted to be attending the National Ploughing championships with them this year. It is great to see Irish companies like FBD Insurance play a role in supporting athletes as they work towards their 2020 Olympic dream and we look forward to working closely with them as we have done for the last few years.”

FBD Insurance will also be urging visitors to this year’s National Ploughing Championships to implement positive safety changes on their farms. In 2018, 17 people lost their lives in farm accidents.  The most accidents occurred from machinery, tractors, vehicles and livestock related incidents, with the young and the elderly being the most common victims.

Ciaran Roche, Risk Manager with FBD Insurance, will be on hand over the three days to answer any questions isitors might have about any element of farm safety. He says:“The consistently high number of serious and fatal accidents in the agricultural sector is of great concern to farmers – and can only be tackled with greater education and awareness of the safety issues involved. At FBD Insurance we are proud to be addressing the question of farm safety at the National Ploughing Championships. Now is the time to challenge ourselves to work more safely and to stop taking risks. All stakeholders need to work together as a farming community to break the cycle of risk-taking behaviour. If we can create a positive safety culture on farms, behavioural change and safer farming practices will follow”.

Other entertainment at the FBD Insurance stand includes a range of great competitions with brilliant prizes, as well as a dedicated Kids Zone for smaller children to enjoy! FBD Insurance experts will also be on hand each day to answer any questions visitors may have on farm, car, home or business insurance. There will also be tea and coffee available at the stand, so visitors can take a moment to relax with a cuppa and see what exciting competitions and prizes are on offer.

The 10 finalists of the FBD Insurance ‘Irish Summer’ photography competition will be exhibited in the stand over the three days of the event, so come along and see the wonderful photography talent we have all over the country. The winner of the competition will be announced by the O’Donovan Brothers on Wednesday 18 September where one lucky winner will scoop themselves a FBD Hotels voucher. Be sure not to miss it…

Once again, FBD Insurance will be running the ‘Keeping You Safe’ Child Safety Wristband initiative in conjunction with the National Ploughing Association. The wristbands, which will be handed-out at the event entrances, allow for a contact phone number to be written on the band in case the wearer wanders off amidst the crowd.

Stay tuned to our social channels for more information on what’s happening with FBD Insurance at the National Ploughing Championships 2019.


For more details about FBD, check out or follow us on

Facebook – FBD Insurance – and Twitter @fbd_ie

Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland releases latest Complaints Bulletin

  • 25 advertisements found to be in breach of the ASAI Code on grounds relating to Misleading Advertising, Health & Beauty, Comparisons and Recognisability

The Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland’s (ASAI) independent Complaints Committee has released its latest Complaints Bulletin, which contains 25 case reports on complaints recently investigated by the organisation.

25 of the 27 advertisements were found to have been in breach of the ASAI Code on grounds relating to Misleading Advertising, Health & Beauty, Comparisons, Decency & Propriety and Recognisability. The advertisements complained of related to Email, Social Media, Outdoor, Online and Radio and Print advertising. Two of those upheld related to intra industry / interested party complaints. The ASAI Complaints Committee chose not to uphold two consumer complaints.

The Complaints Committee is a completely independent arm of the ASAI and is responsible for considering and dealing with complaints submitted by the public, by a member of the ASAI, by a Government Department or any other person or body of persons. The Committee is made up of a range of experts from the advertising, media, education, consumer and marketing sectors. See further details here –

Commenting on the latest ASAI rulings, Orla Twomey, Chief Executive of the ASAI, stated:

“The latest complaints bulletin from the ASAI illustrates our ability to handle complaints across a large number of mediums. The ASAI is committed to protecting consumers in relation to advertising, – across all mediums – and our approach is to work with all advertisers to ultimately ensure that all marketing communications are legal, truthful, decent and honest.

“The ASAI provide a free and confidential copy advice service to the advertising industry to help them create responsible ads. If an advertiser, agency or medium has any concerns about a marketing communications’ compliance with the ASAI’s Code, they can contact us and avail of the free and confidential copy advice service.”

Professor Bairbre Redmond, Independent Head of the Complaints Committee of the ASAI, says:

“Over the past few years, the Complaints Committee, comprised of independent and industry members, has dealt with a broad range of complaints. The Complaints Committee has also spent considerable time highlighting awareness in relation to advertising best practice within the advertising industry, ensuring all relevant parties are equipped with the knowledge and resources to correctly identify commercial marketing content across their platforms.”

Below is a list of complaints that have been found to be in breach of the ASAI Code:

Below is a list of complaints that have been found to be in breach of the ASAI Code:

Company/Organisation Complaint Category Further Details
  City Paving   Principles/Misleading   The complainant considered the advertisement to be misleading as it had displayed two addresses that the company in question were not located at.   In breach of sections 3.10, 4.1, 4.4, 4.9 and 4.10 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  N26 Banking   Decency and Propriety   Two complaints were received in relation to the advertisement. They considered the reference to ‘bullshit’ to be offensive and unnecessary.   In breach of section 3.3 and 3.20 of the code.   Complaints Upheld.   Link:
  Beauty Baby / Ellie Kelly   Recognisability   The complainant felt the post was misleading as #ad had not been included in either the title or the thumbnail of the video. They felt it was therefore unclear that it was a sponsored tutorial.   In breach of section 3.31 and 3.32 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:  
  Flormar Makeup / Katie Moran   Recognisability   The complainant had viewed a post by the blogger Katekontour which featured an image of a blogger modelling a makeup look she had created using Flormar products. A list of products used were provided along with the use of ‘#sp’ to denote it was a marketing communication. Two days later the complainant noted that the blogger had posted a video tutorial of her creating the makeup look for Flormar whereby the blogger had referred to the previous post. As the follow-up post had not included any hashtag to indicate it was a marketing communication, the complainant considered it was in breach of the code. In breach of section 3.31 and 3.32 of the code. Complaint Upheld. Link:
    Mibodi Apparel / Gary Pineda     Recognisability   The complainant considered the post to be misleading in content as the influencer had not declared that it was a marketing communication.   In breach of section 3.31 and 3.32 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  REN Skincare Ireland / Laura’s Views   Recognisability / Misleading     The complainant considered it misleading that the blogger did not mention her status as a Brand Ambassador until the end of the video.   In breach of sections 3.1, 3.2, 4.1 and 4.4 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:   Misleading   The complainant said he clicked on the image of a gas hob provided on the website and tried to find out the cost of having it fitted in line with the ‘half price installation offer’. He said that he couldn’t find a price anywhere on the website for the fitting and when he rang the company, he was informed that they did not fit gas hobs.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4,4 and 4.5 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Carphone Warehouse   Misleading   The complainant felt the advertisement was unclear that the offer did not apply to existing Three customers and was therefore misleading.   In breach of section 4.1 and 4.4 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Tesco Ireland   Misleading   The complainant said that he saw the advertisement at the Ballinamore store. He felt that the advertisement was misleading as, upon enquiring about the service, he was advised that home delivery was not available from that particular store.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9 and 4.10 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Hooke & MacDonald   Misleading   The complainant noted the journey time claim of 25 minutes using Irish Rail in the advertising and stated that the Irish Rail website had stated that the shortest journey time in optimal conditions was 40 minutes. The complainant claimed that most journeys on this route during commuter times were 50 minutes, double that claimed in the advertising.   In breach of sections 4.1 and 4.4 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:     Misleading   The complainant considered the advertising to be misleading. He said that in his opinion there were many strings attached to the tax back process. Rather than getting a free estimate with no strings attached when he followed the procedures outlined in the advertising, he was sent an email with instructions to download and save application forms to be processed. He was also requested to provide photographic ID and his electronic signature.   In breach of sections 4.1,4.4, 4.9 and 4.10 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:  
  Harvey Norman   Misleading   The first complaint said that a video doorbell which was available to buy for €179.99 in one retail outlet was priced at €199 in Harvey Norman. The complainant considered the advertising to be misleading.   The second complainant said that he wished to purchase a WiFi powerline extender which was priced at €59.99 in Harvey Norman. While in the Harvey Norman store, he checked an online retailer’s website and the same item was priced at €49.99. The complainant then asked if the remaining items on the shelf would be priced accordingly and was advised that this would not be the case.   The complainant considered the adverting to be misleading as in his opinion there was every need to shop around as the advertisers only matched their competitors’ prices when a difference in cost was brought to their attention.   In breach of sections 4.1,4.4, 4.9 and 4.10 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Guiry Auctioneers   Misleading   The complainant considered the advertisements to misrepresent the advertised properties as the pictures and a description of the apartment were taken from an advertisement of another property letting agent advertising a two-bedroom suite in a 5-star Dublin hotel.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9 and 4.10 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Toyota   Misleading   Eleven complaints were received regarding the advertising.   Issue 1: The complainants considered that the claim “self-charging” was misleading as the car’s battery was being charged by external power.   Issue 2: One complainant considered that the use of the term “self-charging” was misleading as it indicated to a consumer that they were buying a car that was constantly producing electricity to propel it through perpetual motion which they considered was impossible as energy could not be created or destroyed it was transferred from one form to another.   Issue 3: One complaint claimed that the cars were 100% fossil fuel powered but that they had an extra battery which propelled the cars at low speed but that the internal combustion engine engaged thereafter. Issue 4: Another complainant believed that the advertisers were claiming that their hybrid cars were more efficient than a plug-in hybrid or an electric only car. One complainant considered that hybrid cars had no ability to charge from electricity as they were not plug-in hybrid vehicles.   Issue 5: One complainant considered that the advertising was claiming that the hybrid vehicles were superior to those that needed to be plugged in.   Issue 6: They considered that the claim in the television advertising to save money had not been substantiated and that overall the advertising was making scientifically false and misleading claims. Complaints Upheld in Part.   Link:  
  Lidl   Misleading / Prices   The complainant considered the advertisement to be misleading as, after purchase, they were informed that the chairs were not included in the offer as stated in the advertisement.   In breach of sections 4.1 and 4.22 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Ford Ireland   Misleading / Prices   The complainant considered the advertised prices to be misleading as the final price he was quoted was €199, which was higher than that initially promoted.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10 and 4.22 of the code.   Complaint Upheld   Link:
  Mick’s Garage   Misleading / Availability   The complainant received an email from the advertisers regarding a promotion with a ‘10% everything’ discount code. When the voucher code came up as invalid during the purchase, the complainant was advised that the item he wished to purchase was not included in the promotion as the price for it had already been reduced. The complainant considered this to be misleading as the email stated ‘everything’.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10 and 4.28(a) of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Anthony Conaghan Cars   Misleading / Comparisons The complainant said that the advertisers were self-proclaimed as ‘Ireland’s favourite car retailer’ and had not won any awards. They felt that by using this claim the advertisers were being disingenuous to potential customers in order to generate sales.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10 and 4.33 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  National Dairy Council   Misleading / Comparisons   The complainant considered that the advertising was misleading on the basis that it had stated nut milk contains 12 ingredients. The complainant considered that the advertainment was generalising all nut milks and that while some nut milks contained 12 ingredients, some brands contained only 2 or 3 ingredients.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10 and 4.32 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  MSL Motor Group   Misleading / Promotions   The complainant purchased a car from the advertisers which later required certain items to be replaced while still within the guarantee term. However, the complainant was advised by the advertisers that the items in question were considered ‘wear and tear items’ and would not be covered by the guarantee. The complainant considered that the website did not make this exclusion clear and was therefore misleading.   In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, and 5.15(i) of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  Life Pharmacy   Misleading / Nutrition and Health Claims / Food   The complainant queried whether there was scientific evidence available to substantiate the claims made in the advertisement. The complainant considered that if such evidence was not available that the advertisement was misleading.   In breach of sections 4.1, 8.8, 8.9, 8.11 and 8.25 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:
  AFK Fitness   Misleading / Health and Beauty   Five complaints were received in relation to the various pieces of advertising. The complainants raised the following complaint issues:   Issue 1: The complainants considered that the claims in the various advertisements to prevent, treat or cure illnesses such as cancer or diabetes was misleading and were not capable of substantiation.   Issue 2: One complainant considered that the content on the webpage titled “Cancer Prevention. Nutrition Training After Cancer Recovery” insinuated that chemotherapy was bad and was the reason for the poor cancer survival rates and that the Ketogenic diet was better than chemotherapy.   Issue 3: Complainants considered that the claims to cure cancer were dangerous and were preying on the vulnerable and could encourage patients to stop taking medication.   Issue 4: One complainant considered that the advertisers were not a licenced practitioner and therefore, were not licenced to provide medical services. In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10, 11.1, 11.8(a) and (b) and 11.10 of the code. Complaint Upheld. Link:
  Boylesports     Promotional Marketing Practices The complainant viewed the offer and checked the terms and conditions, noting that no expiry date had been given in the terms and conditions. The complainant signed up and placed a bet of €10. After checking his account the next day, he noted that he had only received a free bet of €5 not the advertised €20. He made enquiries with the advertisers and was told the promotion had ended as it was in conjunction with the World Cup.   In breach of sections 5.4, 5.5. 5.15(c) and 5.16 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:

The ASAI upheld two complaints made by Intra Industry / Interested Parties in the following cases:

Company/Organisation Complaint Category Further Details   Principles / Misleading   Avalon Relationship Consultants, who offer online pre-marriage courses, objected to the statement that online courses did not satisfy Irish diocesan guidelines. They said that this statement was misleading to their customers and damaging to their brand. They said it was a priest who decided on the form of marriage preparation required and that their online pre-marriage course had been accepted by priests in Ireland.   In breach of sections 3.3, 3.4, 4.1, 4.4, 4.9 and 4.10 of the code.   Complaint Upheld.   Link:  
  Fitzwilliam Food Test   Misleading / Health and Beauty   Two consultant Immunologists and a Professor of Paediatrics and Child Health objected to the print advertisement. The Professor made his complaint on behalf of the Irish Food Allergy Network and the Irish Association of Allergy and Immunology. One of the complainants commented that food intolerance testing had been extensively reviewed by numerous organisations, including the Irish Association of Allergy and Immunology, the Irish Food Allergy Network, the European Association of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, the British Society for Allergy and Clinical Immunology, the UK House of Lords and the UK Advertising Standards Authority and was not recommended. Two consumer complaints were also received regarding the online advertainment. In breach of sections 4.1, 4.4, 4.9, 4.10 and 11.1 of the code.   Complaint Upheld in part.   Link:

The following complaints were investigated and following investigation, the ASAI Complaints Committee did not uphold the complaints. Both complaints were made by a consumer party:

Company/Organisation Complaint Category Further Details
  Toyota   Misleading     The complainant considered the advertising was for the Prius model. They considered that the claim that the car was able to drive in electric mode up to 55% of the time while driving was misleading as it was impossible to achieve this unless the driver was sitting in a traffic jam – not moving. The complainant also considered that the statement could mislead consumers into thinking that they could use up to 55% less petrol than a standard internal combustion engine. The complainant said that the reality was that a hybrid vehicle would only give approx. 10% better fuel economy over a comparable standard internal combustion engine vehicle.   Complaint Not Upheld.   Link:
  SSE Airtricity   Misleading / Environmental Claims     Three complaints were received regarding the television advertisement:   Complaint one: Two complainants considered the advertisement to be misleading as it implied the power supplied by the company was all sourced from wind power and the company were a ‘100% green energy company’.   Complaint two: Two complainants considered the advertising was false and designed to give the impression that consumers were buying 100% green electricity and opposed to fossil fuel generated electricity.   Complaint three: One complainant stated that the advertisers operated an oil-fired generating station at Tarbert, Co. Kerry and that this was in conflict with the image they presented as a clean low emissions source of electricity.   Complaint Not Upheld.   Link:

The ASAI conducts ongoing monitoring of advertising across all media and since 2007, has examined over 27,000 advertisements, with an overall compliance rate of 98 per cent. The ASAI Monitoring Service monitors compliance with the Complaints Committee’s adjudications.

Media members are reminded that advertisements found to be in breach of the Code cannot be accepted for publication.

Or follow the ASAI on Twitter @THE_ASAI