It was around the start of June 2020, that Brian O’Sullivan first heard about the
Camile conversion franchise concept, and he got in touch immediately. “I had been following the Camile
brand as it grew over the last few years, and indeed was a customer when I visited branches
in Dublin. So when we heard about their new low-cost conversion franchise, we were instantly
Brian is an experienced publican and nightclub owner, who like everyone else in the country,
had to close his businesses during the lockdown, and knew he could only re-open with a
substantial food offer. His businesses Garavogue Bar, The Blind Tiger and Andersons are
among Sligo’s busiest establishments. “Food was always difficult for us in the Garavogue’’ said
Brian. “We are pretty good at running a wet led business, and the nightclub, but we struggled
to do food as well as we wanted to”.
Brian did some initial research, and then met Camile’s owner Brody Sweeney – they quickly
shook hands on a deal. “The whole process from meeting the Camile people initially and
getting up and running with Camile in Sligo took about 8 weeks” said Brian. “We all moved as
quickly as we could to remodel our kitchen, get trained with the Camile team in Dublin, and
organise a launch promotion. It was a breakneck pace, but we all wanted to get going as soon
as we possibly could, and we did it.
Camile in Sligo opened on the 28th July last, and the opening weeks have been phenomenal.
“We haven’t been able to cope with the level of business” said Brian, “and we’re having to
remodel the kitchen substantially to cope with the volumes. There was huge hype in the town
before we opened, and it has just carried on. In fact Camile in Sligo has instantly moved to be a
top performer in the growing chain of 35 Camile restaurants. We’re delighted with that.”
The initial investment to convert the existing kitchen in Sligo was approximately €35,000 to
offer a delivery and collection service. The existing Pub investment in their original kitchen,
cold room, dry goods store and staff toilets, all reduced substantially the set up cost of the
new venture, and there was little increase in overhead as rent, rates and insurance were
already covered from the core business.
“We are delighted with our new Camile” said Brian. “Our guests love the food, we’re doing
food better as part of our business than before, and the delivery and collection
really adds to the turnover and makes us less dependent on footfall.”