Donna Doyle, Director of Operations for LEON Ireland.
My role is responsible for driving the business forward by delivering financial targets, meeting health and safety regulations, embedding a team culture, following brand guidelines, and ensuring customer satisfaction, among other things.
What does LEON do?
LEON is a multi-award-winning restaurant chain, founded in 2004 by John Vincent, Henry Dimbleby and chef Allegra McEvedy. LEON aims to prove that it was possible to serve food that both tastes good and does you good. As of 2019, LEON has 70 locations across the UK, Europe and the United States, and continues to invest in new stores as its popularity and share of the global fast food market increases.
LEON’s menu is built on the flavours and natural goodness of the Mediterranean way of eating, promoting a diet that is positively full of plants, fresh herbs, spices, good fats from olive oil, seeds and nuts and well-sourced meat. LEON is also committed to protecting the planet, with each of our restaurants fuelled by green energy, replacing plastic with sustainable packaging, taking proactive measures to reduce food waste, and recreating its menu with locally sourced produce.
When did LEON expand into Ireland?
We opened our first LEON store in Ireland in May 2019, in the vibrant riverside neighbourhood and Dublin tourist hotspot, Temple Bar.
Temple Bar is the first of 20 restaurants comprising the LEON Ireland franchise, with the remaining 19 all due to open in the next five years, boosting the Irish economy by creating 600 new jobs and recreating the UK menu with Irish suppliers.
Why is pest control so important to LEON Ireland?
One of the major challenges across food related industries is managing the threat of pests. All business premises are at risk – but where there is food, that risk increases. Ultimately, the success or failure of a restaurant hinges on the way its customers think and feel.
Pest infestations can be catastrophic to brand reputation and potentially harmful to the health of employees and customers, resulting in loss of trust, loss of revenue, failed audits and closure orders.
Our new Temple Bar store is located beside a river and next to a building site, in a notorious tourist area packed with other restaurants and late-night bars and takeaways, LEON needed pest control provider that could meet the demands of a fast-growing business, in a high-risk area.
Why did you choose Pest Pulse?
I was intrigued to learn about the ‘world’s first technology-driven pest control company’ and met with co-founder Tim O’Toole. It was both the product and the person that sold Pest Pulse to LEON Ireland, with the unique capability to offer 24/7 monitoring that separated Pest Pulse from other pest control providers.
We appointed Pest Pulse as a partner to LEON Ireland from the very beginning, well before the opening of our first store in May 2019. This enabled a consultative approach, with Pest Pulse advising throughout the pre- and post-build process and delivering a robust pest control solution that filled the management team and I with confidence.
LEON is still an emerging brand and we care about sustainability, about our brand, and about our people and customers. LEON Ireland is brand new – and we wanted to work with partners that share our values, understand the culture, and can grow with us. Pest Pulse ticks each of those boxes as well as demonstrating an innovative pest control solution that ensures we’re operating to the highest standards.
What has Pest Pulse done for LEON Ireland?
After carrying out site surveys and making the appropriate recommendations, Pest Pulse delivered its strategically positioned smart traps to enable 24/7 monitoring of our Temple Bar restaurant. We can view real-time analytics via cloud-based software and will receive notifications as soon as a trap is activated, so Pest Pulse can investigate and execute corrective actions before an infestation happens.
The experience of working with Pest Pulse has been like having an extension of our own team. Tim has made regular visits, reacted to changes, made valuable recommendations, and despite only having been open for six months, we’ve not had a single pest-related issue.
What does the future hold for Pest Pulse and LEON Ireland?
Experience in the restaurant industry has taught me how devastating an infestation can be. Knowing LEON Ireland’s flagship restaurant is being proactively monitored in real-time, with alerts set up to identify the threat of pests before it becomes a problem, helps set us apart.
We hope to continue working with Pest Pulse and grow together, as one restaurant becomes 20 for LEON Ireland within the next five years.