Evan Quaid wanted to earn some money to buy a new phone so he set up an organic candle business from scratch. Aged 14, he is now the youngest supplier at the world’s oldest duty free store at Shannon Airport. Evan, from Castlemahon in Limerick, bought his own candle-making kit after seeing a YouTube video. He then started producing hundreds of his own organic scented candles at a workshop in his home.
He uses natural beeswax and cotton wicks as lead wicks can be carcinogenic. Evan’s project won him the Young Entrepreneur award in Limerick and he has sold his products into local shops and at the nearby Charleville market. He has also won a major contract to showcase and sell his candles at one of the country’s biggest international shops. On Instagram, he contacted Shannon Duty Free who invited him to talk about his product.
Shannon Duty Free Head of Commercial Darren Smyth said they were struck by Evan’s enthusiasm, enterprise and determination, and the quality of his products. They decided to take Evan on as a client and stock his quality candles in the Shannon design section of their duty free shop, which has products from over 50 Irish suppliers. And Shannon Duty Free wants to see more young entrepreneurs like Evan.
Mr Smyth said Evan’s story has inspired them and they are inviting other budding teenage entrepreneurs to contact them, and they too could see their product selling at the world’s oldest duty free store. Shannon was the world’s first duty free established in 1947 and is now marking its 72nd year.
1.7 million passengers pass through the airport every year and Evan said it is a fantastic opportunity to sell his candles to visitors from across the world.