Based in West Cork, B&M O’Brien Brothers Ltd is a leading provider of agricultural buildings among other things. Bernard O’Brien, who runs the company with his brother Mike, explains more.
While B&M O’Brien Brothers Ltd was only formed six years ago, the O’Brien family have a wealth of experience in constructing quality farm buildings as well as in all aspects of groundworks, civil engineering projects, concrete works and plant hire. Bernard explains: “We followed our father Michael, who is still going strong milking cows, into the business. He and our mother Eileen have done a lot for us and were a huge help to us when we set up this company in 2014.
“I’ve been at groundworks since 1999 when we bought a rubber tyre digger and started doing work for local builders Fleming Construction. We progressed from there to buy our first track machine in 2006, and another one soon after. When the economic crash hit, we purchased shuttering pans and that led to us getting into the farm buildings in about 2010. We then branched into civil engineering and have been involved in a number of housing developments in Cork City with O’Flynn Construction and OBR Developments.”
Civil engineering and agricultural building works have become the two main facets of the Barryroe-based concern, which has grown to employ over 20 staff. The company runs a wide array of machinery and plant, including 15 excavators from two to 21 tonnes, dumpers from six to 25 tonnes and a range of loadalls, including two 21-metre rotary and a 16-metre straight loadall, and two trucks for moving plant quickly and efficiently. The O’Brien brothers’ highly-skilled staff help them to meet and exceed the high standards they have set for themselves. It is these resources that has allowed them to grow steadily with confidence, and also gives their customers confidence in their ability to deliver what they are looking for.
B&M O’Brien Brothers Ltd covers an area of up to 50km radius from its base and has built a solid reputation within this area for exceptional workmanship, value-for-money and an ability to complete all projects on time and within budget. Thanks to their hands-on approach in the day-to-day running of the business, Bernard and Mike have forged excellent working relationships with both their customers and employees alike. This has resulted in continuous repeat custom which speaks volumes for the quality and value they offer. The brothers are always striving for improvement and regularly invest in the latest machinery and technology to ensure the best possible service.
“Customer is number one, quality of work is number two and how fast you can get the job done is number three in terms of importance,” Bernard says.
“We have worked hard to build an outstanding reputation for quality and cost-effectiveness from Skibbereen back to Kinsale and across to Bandon, Newcestown and Dunmanway. We have a long list of satisfied clients in West Cork who use our services over and over again.”
The family-run business is a one stop shop for all your farm building requirements, catering for everything from groundworks, concrete works and design to fabrication and erection of structural steel.
“We provide the full package when it comes to agricultural buildings,” Bernard continues.
“Most of our customers would look for us to do the complete build for them as it cuts out the hassle and saves them money. But if they prefer to do elements of the build themselves, that’s not a problem. After the farmer first makes contact with us, we go out to meet them and advise them on the building that best suits their needs. The next stage is to design the shed and get our quantity surveyor to do up the costings. We can build the shed from the ground up. We’re hands-on from the start and work with the customer every step of the way.”
Michael Hickey Engineering fabricates the sheds and supplies the steel, while Barryroe Co-Op and Heiton Buckley supply the sheeting, timber and accessories. The galvanise comes from Irish Pioneer Works in Cork and the concrete is supplied by Keohane Readymix and Coppeen Concrete. It goes without saying that only the best materials go into making an O’Brien shed!
“The steel we use is graded and CE certified. Everything we use is of the highest quality.”
The abolition of the EU milk quotas in 2015, coupled with grant aid of 60% being available to young farmers under TAMS II, has led to an increased demand for new milking parlours in particular.
“Our farm building business doubled last year due to dairy farmers increasing their herd size. We constructed six new milking parlours in 2019 and upgraded several more. Dairy farming is huge in our area and we’re very grateful for the support we received from local farmers who would all be supplying the Carbery Group through its four supplying co-ops.
“It’s not all dairy – we have built a number of beef finishing sheds and machinery sheds in the last few years too.”
Overall, things are going well for the West Cork company who have recently started their own fabrication work. “We have never been afraid to diversify and that’s standing to us now. We’re not overly reliant on any one aspect of the business which is important in these uncertain times,” Bernard concludes.
Bernard and Mike would like to take this opportunity to thank their customers and suppliers for their continued support, and their staff for their expertise, hard work and dedication.
B&M O’Brien Bros Ltd
Telephone: 086 8682315 (Bernard) / 086 1685952 (Mike)
Email: [email protected]
First published in Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 9 No 1, January/February 2021