Managing Partner at SoolNua

68104_477938204020_6431605_nPádraic Gilligan holds BA and MA degrees in Italian and English literature from University College Dublin and a post graduate diploma in Marketing from Boston College.

Following a 13 year career in education, teaching at second and third levels, he started Delaney Marketing Consultants in 1994 with Patrick Delaney. In 2002 Delaney Marketing acquired Ovation and re-branded as Ovation Group. In June 2007 Ovation was acquired by Swiss based, MCI Group and commenced a robust global expansion programme which saw the establishment of Ovation offices at over 100 global locations through a combination of wholly owned offices and Strategic alliances and partnerships. In December 2013 Gilligan completed his contract with MCI.

With Patrick Delaney, Gilligan is currently Managing Partner of SoolNua, a boutique consultancy offering another viewpoint for meetings and events. He has written and spoken all over the world on many aspects of meetings and incentives, regularly contributing to Site, MPI, ADMEI and other industry bodies. Areas of interest include Social Media, Branding, Service Marketing, Regulations in the Pharmaceutical Industry, Measurement/Return on Investment, Defining Value Proposition particularly in the DMC sector, the Business Case for Meetings and Events etc. His interests in these areas and in destinations in general are reflected in his blog which may be accessed on

In 2004 he was elected to the International Board of the Site and served as international President of this global organisation in 2008. In 2012 he joined the Hospitality Partners Advisory Council at FICP (Finance and Insurance Conference Planners). He has won many awards and was voted Industry Personality of the Year by for 2009 and Destination management professional of the Year in 2013 by ADMEI. He also sits on the Advisory Boards of IHG and Special Events magazine. Padraic is married to Rita Smyth and together they have 6 children ranging in age from 17 to 29. He is a passionate supporter of Arsenal Football Club, a performing singer-songwriter, walks 3 miles every day and is the proud grandfather to two beautiful boys.

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