Alumni Spotlight

Niall McGrath
Co-Founder, Cali Cali Foods

Entrepreneur Niall McGrath completed the MDP in 1999. This, after completing an undergraduate degree in Business and Law from UCD. After the MDP, Niall went on to work for Red Bull, and finished his tenure as a marketing director, before leaving in 2010. Niall then went on to work for Richmond Marketing as a marketing director for a further five years, before he decided to pursue his entrepreneurial dreams.

In 2012, Niall co-founded Fulfill Nutrition, producers of the immensely popular protein bars. Fulfill became a hugely successful Irish start-up story, selling 15 million bars by 2016. The marketing of the Fulfill was paramount in its success. Fulfill nailed their positioning between a tasty treat and a healthy snack, allowed consumers to influence the flavours it brought to market, and made the brand “feel bigger than it was” in the early days by developing key relationships to have the bars readily available and visible in shops all around Ireland.

In 2018, Niall, along with his business partner Tom Gannon and celebrity chef Donal Skehan, co-founded Cali Cali Foods. The new guilt-free snacking brand has already released several innovative treats, including healthy crisps and a range of sauces. Niall is one of many who have displayed an entrepreneurial spirit since leaving the MDP!

Niamh Kellett
Co-Founder, Mixtape Marketing

Niamh Kellett began her career straight after the MDP with Verve Marketing, where she worked for 3 years and then moved on to Imagine Marketing as a director.

In April 2012, Niamh alongside her business partners established Mixtape Marketing. The company now specialises in brand activations on behalf of many Irish and international brands. Niamh says, “I absolutely love my job and I think you really have to love this industry to last, because it is hard work, high pressure and a lot of stress at times but I wouldn’t change a thing!”. Coronavirus has been a major shock to many industries, and this is no exception for Mixtape Marketing. With the plug being pulled on every event in the foreseeable, Niamh and her team have had to come up with ways for brands to still connect with their consumer bases even though there are no activation opportunities on the cards at the moment.

Niamh expresses how the MDP had and still has a great influence on her career, and since there is such a far-reaching alumni base “there is literally a former MDP-er in every company I deal with”. Niamh’s main piece of advice for any current students is to hold on to any and all connections from the MDP as you really never know where people will end up and who you will be contacting in years to come to try to win some business!

Matthew O'Hanlon
Agency Account Strategist, Google

MDP alumnus and current Wexford Hurling Captain, Matthew O’Hanlon, completed the programme in 2015. Matthew did his undergraduate degree in Commerce International (Spanish) in UCD, which included an academic year abroad in Madrid, studying at the Universidad Pontificia Comillas before he joined the MDP in September 2014.

After the MDP, Matthew accepted a role as Assistant Brand Manager with Procter & Gamble. During his time with Proctor & Gamble Matthew was responsible for marketing and strategy on 12 market-leading brands, which included Fairy, Febreze and Gillette. A highlight of his time with Proctor & Gamble was leading P&G Ireland’s 2016 Rio Olympics “Thank You Mum” National campaign including the signing of Katie Taylor as an ambassador.

After 3 years with P&G, Matthew decided to take some time out from his professional career to travel South America. He has since turned his attention to the technology industry, joining Google in June of 2019. 

Louise O'Brien
Strategic Accounts, Salesforce

Louise hails from Dingle, in County Kerry. Like many of our advisors, Louise didn’t come from a business background before joining the programme. At undergraduate level, she studied French and Irish at the University of Limerick. After her degree, she travelled to Abu Dhabi, where she spent 2 years working as a teacher, before joining the MDP in 2017. 

After her time at the MDP, Louise decided to turn her attention to the tech industry, joining Salesforce as a Sales Development Representative in September of 2018, where she worked with SMEs. She has since moved on to work in, the philanthropic wing of Salesforce, where she now works with global nonprofit organisations across EMEA.

“The skills I learned on the MDP are of huge benefit to me in my current role. My ability to research prospects, engage and forge relationships with customers and strategic account planning are all testament to the foundation I got on the programme”.