Archive for May, 2009

Yo Sushi Dublin – FAIL

Last night i checked out the new Yo Sushi restaurant in Dublin. I love the Yo Sushi story, the entrepreneur behind and in general sushi – so i was looking forward to it and massively disappointed. In Ireland its run by the same group that run Abrekababra and alas, it has some of the flavourings of the 3.30am popular fast food joint.

It was a Total FAIL. We were pointed to our seats, nice ones in front of the sushi preparation area… that was it from our waitress. Seriously! not even offered a drink or Miso soup. At any one time there were less than 4 different types of food on the conveyor belt. Often the conveyor belt was almost completely empty and there wasn’t a free seat in the house. Realistically they could have done with double the staff.

The food preparation wasn’t what you’d expect from a sushi restaurant either. A machine made the rice squares which fell apart when the met with soya sauce. The only time we saw the food preparers with a knife was to open the cling film on the cooked prawn toppings. And if you wanted raw fish… the choices were slim.

The waitresses’ would complain to the sushi makers that customers wanted their orders / were annoyed there was no food on the conveyor belt and they would argue back that they would have to wait. Understandable but not what you want to see as a customer.

Granted its a new restaurant and hopefully they will get their act together, god knows Ireland needs a good sushi restaurant – I miss AYA in the early days when the chefs were really chefs.

The final nail in the coffin was us leaving, there were no deserts – which was the majority of plates when we started so we decided we’d go somewhere else for desert. I got near the front door and found a queue to pay – but no-one at the cash desk. The staff were busy seating new customers in our seats already but none were available to collect the money. One group who were walking out after 2 dishes just left cash under a stapler in frustration. Eventually a girl came over to the desk and apologized nicely, then went on to explain there would be no receipts as the till wasn’t working. I explained it was a work related trip and needed a receipt. Sorry was the reply. So i handed over the credit card, five minutes later i was told sorry our line isn’t working either. Again i explained that the very least i needed was a visa receipt. A blank smile. the customers in the queue who could pay cash jumped ahead and escaped the restaurant. “Sir, your just going to have to pay cash…”

Massive FAIL on the management part in YoSushi, Major FAIL.

TEDx Comes to Dublin

An independently organized TED event is being planned to take place in Dublin. With the Announcement taking place on face book and sweaping Twitter by storm there is going to be massive excitement about this even.


TED is a concept of bring the smartest minds and speakers together to share their knowledge, in three categories Technology, Entertainment and Design (TED). With a mission of spreading Ideas’s they decided to share this knowledge and insight from the best the world has to offer, to everyone, free online. Anyone at any time can download and watch any of over 400 presentations of world changing ideas.

Aaron Quigley Is one of the organizers for the Dublin Eveny. – A lecturer in UCD and with the support of the online community 100% behind him this is bound to be a success.

Speakers and venue are yet to be announced, Date is June 12th, but keep in touch with the newly formed TEDx Facebook page for more info as it gets released. Thanks to the Science Gallery for hosting the event.

Hot Links

Business seems to have turned on itself in the last year, big companies now face problems and small businesses are either sinking or swimming. For those that are swimming, this time of uncertainty and cost cutting opens the door to clients that wouldn’t have considered them before.

Alan Keane Launched an online download for stress reducing meditation and relaxation MP3 and CDs. A mixture between expensive therapy and Yoga, all done in the comfort or your own home – with ease and tranquility.

Realex did a 5 year deal to process payments for Virgin Atlantic. Awesome Irish company and Colm Lyon (CEO) is a great man to make it all happen. are showing massive growth – I have to admit i find myself checking it more often there as the conversation gets more interesting.

Mike Hogan on Dublins 98 has become a sleuth detective and reporting new that really matters – are clown shoes really dangerous? I’d rather hear that then another nut job saying property will rally soon!

The guys in Entertainment Direct seem to be going from strength to strength – and growing fast with referrals and just doing a great job all the time. is going from Strength to Strength with some big news in the pipeline. Not far off meeting our goal of becoming Irelands biggest niche bikini store by the end of the year.

Ebookers gave us an amazing deal on Flights to LA! 50 quid plus taxes (337 in total) – Nice. Anyone who wants to meet up August 19 in LA drop me a mail.

Have competitive strategies become broken?

Reflecting on the last ten years one has to ask toward the end of the boom did companies engage too heavy in competition and as a result did growth / innovation suffer?

Rather than businesses opening in regions where competition was low for example, the tendency it would seem was for Aldi in the supermarket industry, for example, as close open a store as close as possible to Lidl. As this practice became more apparent natural defensive strategies such as buying up other prime real estate to circumvent competition moving in also became the norm. Companies got so bogged down in innovation to keep existing customers rather than focus that same effort to grow a market differential.

With this fundamental shift in economics, the new focus it could be argued, now needs to be on niching and craving out new market sections that as a business you can become the market leader in rather than fighting to keep market share in diminishing markets.

Innovation and doing one thing amazingly instead of everything being just being the same as competitors and frankly average is no longer an option to do business. Is manager ego and sticking to proven strategies that worked in a business climate different to what we face today a sure-fire way to get washed away in the recession cleansing?

Eircom 7mb broadband a disgrace

Eircom as a business are a joke. I’ve been waiting for about three weeks to hear if they can provide a 7mb broadband connection. Oh and the’re charging me while i wait!!!! There still looking into whether their lines are capable of carrying such speeds in the area or for that matter broadband at all. From what i heard its very unlikely they could deliver cause anyone i know with 7mb connections rarely gets consistent 7mbspeed tests, but in a fair portion of the country they have a monopoly still so its their way or become very patient with a 3g dongel.

Like most tech people i would imagine, i never use a home phone (simply my contacts are in my mobile) so getting shafted for a 31.33 a month phone line is just an extra cost to get broadband. But what really pisses me off is that for them to sit on the arse for 4 weeks to check if they can even provide a broadband service they insist on charging you for the “service” that they can’t yet and don’t know if they will ever be able to provide!

Its a disgrace. Minister Eamon Ryan’s Broadband Promises and national broadband scheme are laughable.

If the gov want to get the economy stimulated, they need to get their act together. The future is very much online and tech exports, companies like mine bring in much needed fund the exchequer by exporting through online businesses or even simply businesses that need email to make job creation happen. Forget fancy stimulus packages and bailing out slothful companies, get back to basics and lets give people the basic tools that people need to function in today’s environment.

********Update 11th May 2009******************

After a months “subscription” they finally tested the line, due to a line being down for several months (which they informed me of when first running the cables to the house) and not being fixed they Eircom cannot provide ANY BROADBAND service. I’m starting to question if they really needed a month to test the line or if that was a revenue generating ploy???