Mary Ann O’Brien, the 2007 Image Business Woman of the Year, is the founder and managing director of Lily O’Brien Chocolates. Founded in 1992 and called after her eldest daughter, Lily, the company, which started in Mary Ann’s kitchen, has grown into an internationally recognised brand with a turnover of over €20 million. The business now operates out of its own custom designed factory in Newbridge, Co. Kildare, where over 100 staff are employed in producing award-winning, luxury chocolates, most of which are exported. Committed to constant innovation, Mary Ann has very valuable experience in creating new markets for her product and of competing and winning market share against much larger established companies. Lead Entrepreneur on our pilot cycle of Going for Growth, Mary Ann continues to be associated with Going for Growth through her membership of the advisory panel.