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Following their departure from MCI, meetings industry veterans launched SoolElla, an Ireland-based boutique consultancy firm offering “another viewpoint” on meetings and events.

Patrick M Delaney [Left] and Pádraic Gilligan [Right]

Patrick M Delaney [Left] and Pádraic Gilligan [Right]


Initially concentrating on marketing, training and running customer advisory boards, SoolElla will bring Patrick Delaney’s and Pádraic Gilligan’s passion, industry experience and global contacts to tourist boards, convention bureaus, hotels, DMCs and other industry organizations.

“We’ve worked on both sides of the fence from public to private, from association to corporate and from agency to DMC, so we have a unique perspective across the entire spectrum of the meetings and events industry. Likewise, our roles at MCI and leadership positions with associations like ICCA, Site, MPI and FICP have taken us all over the world connecting us with great people and affording us a truly global vision” said Patrick Delaney, managing partner, SoolElla.

Prior to launching SoolElla, Delaney and Gilligan had board positions at MCI and led MCI’s destination services product practice, establishing offices at 100 destinations worldwide.

“We’ve always been values-led, believing that truly humanized work environments best foster creativity, innovation and business success. Take my 15 years in education and Patrick’s background in hospitality; add in 20 years of MICE, sprinkle on a liberal doze of quirky, left-of-field personality and a generous pinch of attitude (in a good way!) and you have a potent cocktail designed to provide you with another viewpoint on meetings and events,” explained Pádraic Gilligan, managing partner, SoolElla.

The duo’s 50-person strong Irish-based agency, Ovation Group, started in 1994 and was acquired by MCI in 2007. Gilligan previously spent 13 years in education teaching high school and university levels while Delaney, a graduate in Hotel Management, worked in hospitality before leading the Irish Tourist Board’s business tourism division in North America.

“We’ll miss Patrick and Pádraic on a day-to-day basis at MCI, but I’m proud that MCI has become their first client. They bring peerless experience, deep expertise and real value to the table, and I look forward to working with them on a project basis in 2014,” said Roger Tondeur, chairman, MCI. “Needless to say, I know SoolElla will be a much in demand consultancy firm, and I wish Patrick and Pádraic all the best in this new initiative.”

For more information, visit www.soolella.com or contact Aoife@soolella.com.

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