Advantage Danske Bank

Leading the way for local retailers


Danske Bank is committed to supporting the growth and success of local retailers. This special business breakfast provided attendees with an opportunity to hear from leading industry speakers about the issues and opportusnities ahead for the retail sector in Northern Ireland. 

We were delighted to welcome esteemed guests Mervyn Storey, Minister for Social Development and Glyn Roberts from the Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association (NIIRTA). NIIRTA launched it's annual Independent's Day campaign which celebrates the contribution local retailers make to our economy and urges people to shop at independent stores on 4 July.

We also had an expert panel who discussed their views on the local retail sector. ​​​​​​​


Kevin Kingston, Danske Bank
Kevin Kingston, Danske Bank and Glyn Roberts, Chief Executive, NIIRTA speaking at our Danske Advantage event on retail.
Peter Boyle, CEO, Argento
Peter Boyle, CEO, Argento speaking at our first Danske Advantage event in Belfast.
Colin Conway, Managing Director, Newell Stores
Colin Conway, Managing Director, Newell Stores, talks about the growth of his business.



Mervyn Storey MLA, Minister for Social DevelopmentMervyn Storey MLA
Mervyn Storey was first elected to Ballymoney Borough Council in 2001 and has held the position of Vice Chairman of the Economic Development Committee.

This is Mervyn’s third term as Assembly Member for North Antrim having been successfully returned in 2011. He served as the Chair of the Education Committee until he was appointed as Minister for Social Development in September 2014. 

Glyn Roberts
Glyn Roberts, Chief Executive, NIIRTA
Glyn Roberts was appointed Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association 
(NIIRTA) on January 2008 after serving seven years as Head of Press and Parliamentary Affairs with the Federation of Small Businesses in Northern Ireland. 

Glyn has just been appointed as the new Chairman of Colleges NI, which represents the six local FE Colleges.

In addition he was Vice-Chairman of the Northern Ireland Assembly and Business Trust (2011-12). 

He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and recently stood down as a member of the Governing Board of the South Eastern Regional College.

Previous positions held include, Public Affairs Director with Weber Shandwick, Head of Communications for the Ulster Cancer Foundation and was Manager of a Community Work Programme in West Belfast for the long-term unemployed.

Glyn holds a degree in Political Science from the University of Ulster and is a graduate of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Leaders for Tomorrow Programme (2008) and the US State Department International Leadership Programme (2007). ​​​​​​​​​

Peter Boyle
Colin Conway, Managing Director, Newell Stores​
​Colin is the Managing Director of Newell Stores which operates two supermarkets in Dungannon and Coalisland employing over 300 staff. 

Colin joined the company 13 years ago with responsibility for operations management and is now Managing Director. He led the strategy, planning and execution of the group expansion to a second store in Coalisland which opened in March 2013 and represented a £8m investment in the Coalisland town centre. 

He manages all stakeholder relations to include a specific focus on identifying and developing relations with local suppliers which provide quantifiable differentiation between Newell Stores and the UK multiples; Tesco, Sainsbury et al.

Peter Boyle, CEO, ArgentoPeter Boyle
In 1997 Argento was established by Strabane family man Peter Boyle who began his successful career selling jewellery from a market stall in Belfast City Centre. The entrepreneur gained enough invaluable experience and success selling to his customers to open his first store on Castle Street just round the corner from Argento’s eye catching flagship store on Royal Avenue, Belfast. 

Pete in true entrepreneurial spirit decided to travel the world sourcing the best jewellery suppliers for his customers, he went from Mexico to India to Asia and beyond. To this day Pete annually travels to the largest jewellery fairs in the world to purchase stock for all 48 jewellery stores. As well as Pete having an excellent eye for fine and costume jewellery, Argento is the leading retail partner of Pandora Jewellery, opening stores across the UK as a franchisee. Argento are also key stockists of Thomas Sabo and Nomination. Pete has built excellent relationships with these brands and this has made Argento a one stop shop for all a customer’s jewellery needs. Pete’s commitment to Argento and his trust in his 500 plus staff has seen the company grow by 50% in the last 5 years with plans to have 50 stores by the end of 2015. His entrepreneurial success was noted by Ernst and Young in 2011 when he was a finalist in their Young Entrepreneur of the Year awards.​​​​​​​​​​​​

Angela McGowan, Chief Economist, Danske Bank (2008 – 2016)Angela McGowan

Angela joined what was then Northern Bank in 2008 from the Economic Research Institute of Northern Ireland (ERINI) where she worked as a Senior Economist. She has 20 years’ experience in the economics field, having begun her economics career as a Research Associate in the Economics Department at Queen’s University. She also previously worked in the former Northern Ireland Economic Council as a Senior Economist and the Economic Research Institute for NI.

In her capacity as Danske Bank Chief Economist at the time of this event Angela provided analysis, commentary and insights on Northern Irish, UK and global economic trends, in particular those elements of economic performance which impacted the Bank's personal and business portfolios. Angela also provided commentary on issues impacting the local economy in regional and national media and reported on local economic statistics and trends to colleagues in the Danske Bank Group.

0345 850 9515

Contact us

Customer information Useful numbers Book Appointment Become a customer

Chat with us

Customer Support

Find out more

Find a business Centre