Sunday, 1 November 2009

Yes!! Favela Project goes live on Dreamaid!! :)

When setting up an organisation like Dreamaid 'Vision' is critical. For me Dreamaid has the most compelling Vision and 'Purpose' of any business I have ever been involved with.

Our Vision is for a better world in which even the poor have access to the market and our Purpose is to help people.

We now have another project on board which demonstrates the Vision and Purpose in practice.

With the combined efforts of BP, Dreamaid and UNISUAM (a local University) these very poor people from a favela (shanty town) in Rio now have the chance to make a living for themselves

The people have been formed in to a Cooperative and 25% of the sales will go to support the Cooperative and the rest to the artist. BP have assisted in drawing up the framework agreements for the group and in getting the people formally registered with the relevant authorities.

For many this is the first time that they have had a Carteira de Trabalho (work registration document). Therefore they were not legally entitled to work in Brazil without this document. Now they can!

I visited this group with Cristina Figuerido (BP) and Altayr Montan Derossi (UNISUAM) recently and was humbled by their work. Congratulations to them on their fantastic support in the favela.

The people from the favela are lovely people who deserve a chance in life. Poverty may currently constrain their options but not their minds as their photographs ably demonstrate.

They are aptly named "Foco No Futuro" - Focus on the Future...

Let's hope that they are successful and that we can jointly create a better future for them :)

Best wishes to you all and thank you for your lovely hospitality when I was with you!!

Pete McAteer

Mexican Art at the British Museum

Apologies for lack of communication. I've been doing a bit of running around again :)

Last week I was in London on my way back from Brazil and was invited by BP to the opening of an exhibition of Mexican art at the British Museum. Several interesting conversations were had with heads of various companies regarding potential CSR support and I will follow those up in due course.

I returned to take a closer look a week later for a Breakfast meeting and to hear a speach from the Mexican Embassador and a young winner of a competition to describe the meaning of the "Day of Dead" - a Mexican celebration in which they remember their dead relatives and loved ones.

Key companies that showed further interest were Cemex, Mexicana (national airline) and BP. I was very grateful for the opportunity to discuss with various people our Dreamaid Charity projects and aspirations.

Thank you BP for your continued encouragement.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Rio de Janeiro - BP Favela Project

We have been working closely with a project in Rio where 85 photographers from one of the city's most violent favelas (shanty towns).

This training project was about to close when we met with BP to see if we could help. We are shortly planning to sell the photographic prints these mainly young people produce on Dreamaid.

We hope to achieve this in the coming week and will let you know when they go live with our second social project.

Dreams coming true here on Dreamaid :)

Peter McAteer

Recife - Arts & Craft Fair Organisors 14-18.10.09

The largest arts and crafts fair in Latin America takes place annually in Recife. This year it grew from sales of c. £1m in 2006 to £10m in 2009 with around 250,000 visitors!

Although it is normal only for Brazilian artists to display at the fair we have been invited to apply to participate. Albeit we may have a Brazilian entity by the time the next fair takes place anyway.

Apart from organising the fair this government sponsored group also provides support to the local region (Pernambuco) which is huge in aerial extent. We discussed how we might work to assist taking artists products to market both within Brazil and potentially internationally and agreed to work together.

Following the meeting we received the contact details of all the artisan groups that displayed at the fair this year and will be contacting them to bring them to Dreamaid.

We also met with a number of local artists and artisans and received a tremendous reception.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Recife - Government Dept 14-18.10.09

The North East of Brazil is famous for its outstanding natural beauty. It is a very poor cousin of the Southern areas in which many people survive by their artisan skills alone.

We met with the main government department providing training and support to the artisans to see if we could help them in their drive to commercialise artisans better.

A meeting that was scheduled to take up to an hour lasted almost three. A hallmark of most meetings we are having on Dreamaid.

Again the reception was brilliant. It is now a common occurrence that meetings start as official business meetings and end up in often tear filled embraces and 'beijos' - kisses - as we bid farewell and vow to improve things together.

A forthcoming conference of the national leaders of the 27 states of Brazil will focus on commercialising artisans. We have offered to present Dreamaid at this or any similar venue in future. Clearly we are a long way ahead of the NGO's and government bodies in using Web 2.0 technology to commercialise artisans but we really need their support and access to the artisans in order to effect a major breakthrough.

We are under no illusion as to the size of task ahead but to have started at all is a major step forward. We cannot fix everyone's problems but if we can start to help some people we will have made a valuable contribution to some people's lives.

Dreaming of a brighter future :)

Peter McAteer

IETS Brazil - 13.10.09

View Video

We met with the leader of this Government sponsored think tank which works to link companies, NGO's, academia and Government to forge a brighter future for Brasil.

The reception we had was fantastic and we have been invited to present to a wider group when we next return to Rio.

The leader was very quick to recognise the radically new business model that Dreamaid represents. His insight to the underlying strategy of Dreamaid was as remarkable and his recognition of the outstanding potential of Dreamaid both to help the poorer artists and to become a torch bearer for a new way of doing business in a caring and supportive fashion.

This think tank is acively involved in the strategic direction of Rio in to the World Cup, Olympics and beyond.

Dreamaid wants to be part of this new Rio as the city struggles to shrug off its difficulties of having a population in which 75% of people are poorly educated. It is a city of amazing contrasts where the facade of world famous Sugar Loaf and Christ Redeemed statue lay back to back with incredibly violent shanty towns (favelas) and their drug barons. Last weekend saw 14 die in gun fights in which a Police helicopter was shot down and the two policemen killed.

We are working in one of these favelas to help people reach out beyond their boundaries to a brighter future.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Rio De Janeiro Arts & Crafts Fair - 10-12.10.09

In an amazing meeting lasting several hours Cenira and I explored a partnership agreement with a very large government sponsored NGO in Brazil which helps poor artists and artisans.

We have put together a proposal to work with them to help them sell their goods on Dreamaid and also to provide internet access to these people.

There are 2000 women from extremely poor communities covering 14 communes in 12 states across Brazil. Some of these people live beneath the trees they use to make products and don't even have anything resembling a house. Others installed their first toilets recently with the support they were receiving from the NGO.

Amongst their product ranges are amazing handbags made from fishskins which are coloured in a uniquely Brazilian fashion.

By working with existing NGO's we can reach out to many more people than we can alone. Many of the NGO's provide great support and with our assistance we can move these people in to the 21st century and afford them access to market at greatly reduced cost to them.

We even discussed using the clothes that they make for the next filming of a documentary covering Dremaid to be filmed in London in a few weeks. Let's hope we can get them online and purchase the clothes in time for filming!

Best wishes,

Peter McAteer

Rio De Janeiro Arts & Crafts Fair - 10-12.10.09

An impromptu visit to this Rio fair brought a surprising amount of results. Cenira and I were filmed by the Department for Agriculture that had organised the event as we were discussing the difficulties an amazing furniture maker was facing.

Washington (strange but true Brazilian name) from the North of Brazil was displaying works made from discarded wood. He had been helped to bring his goods by the government as there was no way he could afford to bring them to market otherwise.

We said we would try to help him to sell on Dreamaid but he needs to obtain the necessary certification to ensure that he is abiding by rules to protect the rain forest.

It is important that we acknowledge there is a wonderful opportunity for artisans to help with carbon capture but this must be within a recognised scheme with appropriate certification. If we turn trees in to useful products whilst growing more trees to continue capturing carbon we help the environment. If we just cut the trees down for short term gain we destroy the environment. As there are official bodies in place to deal with this subject we are keen to work closely with them to ensure we do our best to help both the artisan and the environment.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Monday, 5 October 2009

Craft Advice

In our experience the handicrafts network love to share ideas and know how. Many people face similar issues on which they would like advice. Also, both locally and internationally we have found that some people have really interesting techniques that others could benefit from learning.

One example is incredibly fine paper made from elephant dung in Thailand and a lesser quality paper made from recycled paper in Mexico. How do we transfer such knowledge? The addition of flower petals in Mexico created very intersting paper and maybe the Thai people would benefit from this?

We believe we have the answer to these challenges in hand...

We are putting the final touches to our learning environment for handicrafts people.

What should we call it? Options we are considering are:

Dream Answers
Craft Answers
Craft Advice

Can you think of a better title?

We are working with our Dreamers to create the logic behind the database so that it is more useful to them.

Best wishes,

Pete McAteer

Thursday, 1 October 2009

We Need More Sellers!

Dreamaid will be the subject of a major television documentary which is likely to result in substantial numbers of people visiting the site to purchase our items.

This presents a huge opportunity for our sellers and we are concerned that we need more of your items to sell.

If you are not already selling on Dreamaid we would love to see you benefitting from this great publicity and if you are already selling, please maximise the number of products you have avaliable to sell.

Sweet Dreams

Peter McAteer

Dreamaid in Press and Journal

Following a recent interview at the Aberdeen office, the following article was published in this North East of Scotland newspaper.

Best Wishes,

Peter McAteer

Press Release in Europe

Last week saw our first press release and video interview in the United Kingdom and in Europe, which can be found at the following addresses for different languages:








Friday, 11 September 2009

New Childrens Category

Following many requests, we have now added a new category for Childrens products on the Dreamaid website.

If you have a large number of products that you would like to relist under this category, please contact our Support dept and we will be able to do this in bulk for you rather than you having to edit and relist each product.

Murray Cormack
Lead Developer

Thursday, 10 September 2009

Mexico - Hammocks on sale!!

View Video

Take a look at these incredible hammocks. I met this commune of ladies from Merida in the Yukatan region of Southern Mexico during the world tour. They are being helped by Cemex and we have worked together to bring their products to you on Dreamaid.

The hammocks take 2 months to create and are of incredibly high quality. I've bought one for my son to take to University as we all know how much rest a student needs :)

Take a look at

Sooooo good to see them on Dreamaid!! :)

Best wishes to them and here's wishing them every success...

Peter McAteer

Notable Updates

In addition to the multiple currency capability recently announced we now have the ability to rank products by 'price', 'date listed or 'donation'.

This makes it easier for people to buy within a price bracket or for sellers to list at a price that is appropriate for the marketplace.

We can also see that almost everyone likes to donate to the Dreamaid Charity which demonstrates the caring nature of our Dreamers!!

Thanks for your continued support!

Peter McAteer

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Back home - the traveller returns

After almost two months of travelling, 7 countries, four continents, ten major cities, 23 flights, endless taxis, the weary traveller returns to Aberdeen, Scotland.

It has been an exhausting journey full of enormous potential. A great deal has been learned, many new contacts made and new relationships begun. Dreamaid has not received a single negative comment in all the discussions held, from government departments, to large corporate sponsors; from artisan communes of the very poor to a very famous musician I met in an airport.

I have just fed myself on home cooking (beans on toast - pure luxury)! Hotel and restaurant food for two months is enough for a lifetime. My first cup of tea was a relish to savour but it has to be said that my mind is on the massive amount of work I have drummed up.

All in all it is the most taxing, exhilerating, thought provoking, enjoyable, emotional and fabulous business trip I have ever made.

Thank you to everyone at UKTI for ther wonderful dedication, talent and support throughout my journey. Thank you also to everyone I met from the companies and government departments around the world. Thank you to Tom and Eve (my son and daughter support team) for their wonderful companionship and good humour and to Cenira without whose understanding and talent so much less would have been achieved. To friends and family for tolerating me; but we absent minded Dreamers require the occasional state of contemplation :)

So now to the mountain of emails that have amassed to circa 700 whilst on the trail.

I was sure before I left on this Round the World trip that Dreamaid would be a success. I am much more sure of it now... but now I think it has the potential to be massive on a truly global scale.

But we need people to buy these wonderful handmade products and to show their loved ones that they care. We cannot help anyone unless the business is successfully growing and that needs people to buy the products.

I'm sure that the buyers will come in large volumes over time and as they do we will be able to expand our support to those that need it.

Finally thank you for reading this and for following our exploits and sharing our Dream,

Peter McAteer

Brazil – Rio de Janeiro - BP

In our last visit to Brazil we had identified a potential project with the photographers that BP has trained in the Associacao Nova Brasiia within the Favela Complexo do Alemao. The project is named Foco no Futuro (Focus on the Future).
BP Castrol has trained 85 photographers from the favela ranging in age from their late teens to mid fifties with the main group being in the late teens and early twenties.

The training project has recently finished and the focus of the project organiser (Altayr – a lecturer from a local University - UNISUAM) is now upon turning the Association’s students in to monitors so that they can train other photographers. Also they are looking in to ways that the students can become professionals and support themselves by making a living out of their new found skills.

Dreamaid offers these people a market place in which to sell their prints. We explained how Dreamaid works and also discussed whether or not further support would be required from the Dreamaid Charity (for PC purchases / cameras / internet access). The project coordinator from BP is planning to consider this offer but thanked us for what we are doing already.

Our meeting was held at the Association offices on the edge of the favela and we took the opportunity to get some pictures which will be shown on the site shortly. It was a wonderful experience to see how a little support can go a long way and BP is to be congratulated on this outstanding example of community support.

There is further work to be done on the legal aspects of the Association’s agreements with the artists and between themselves. We will also need to review how cash can be received and distributed appropriately but these are hopefully small steps that can be accomplished within the next couple of months. An interim measure was offered by Altayr which may see these prints on sale very soon…

Thank you to Cris, Samara, Uanderson, Ana Carolina and Altayr for your hospitality! We are looking forward to our first project in Brazil within a favela and bringing your amazing photographs to the wider public attention of the world.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Brazil – Sao Paulo Press Conference

An announcement was made on the UKTI website and published in the influential daily newspaper for Sao Paulo (the Brazilian main city for commerce) O Estado de São Paulo on the 7th of August within the section Caderno 2 column Direto Da Fonte (Direct from the Source).

A highly respected national television company TV Cultura were also planning to follow us in Embu Das Artes but unfortunately were unable to attend due to a strike on the day. We agreed to advise TV Cultura and O Globo when we are back in Brazil and working on projects for them to show nationwide on TV. (O Globo the main TV channel had also expressed an interest in following our progress).

The Press Conference was a little disappointing in some respects with only 3 of the 12 reporters attending that had confirmed. However, those that did attend covered the key areas of tourism, sustainability / environment and house and home. The reporters will be publishing articles in their respective publications, Jornal Tourismo, National Geographic and “Casa&” a supplement of a major newspaper for Sao Paulo and the whole nation of Brazil “O Estado de S. Paulo”.

Another reporter from “Vida Simples” magazine conducted an interview by email which we hope will be published in the near future. His questions got to the heart of the matter of both the business and Charity of Dreamaid and I look forward to seeing his report.

Working with the media is new to me and I have much to learn but would like to thank those that attended and have assisted us thus far. There is much to do but this is a good start.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Brazil – Sao Paulo Embu Das Artes

We spent Friday evening with a small group of artisans discussing their difficulties accessing the internet and using Dreamaid. We invited them to our Press Conference in Sao Paulo and set up a plan to discuss with an Association set up to help them. We also arranged to see if we could obtain further banking support to help them receive payments by credit card in the same way in which this had been given in Benedito Calixto.

A subsequent meeting with the Association revealed potential to work together to provide the resources necessary to assist the artists and artisans to access the internet and to get their products online. However, this may make take some time and could be quite complex as this level of support doesn’t fall under the objectives of the Dreamaid Charity (as the people are not sufficiently poor) and is a significant cost for the Dreamaid business. However, we would like to help if possible and will continue to explore ways to assist as best we can.

Best regards,
Peter McAteer

Brazil – Rio de Janeiro - Statoil

An encouraging meeting was held with the head of CSR in Brazil in which we outlined the objectives of Dreamaid. Most oil and gas companies only perform CSR projects when they have a budget which is linked to a license to produce or explore for oil. However, Statoil takes a more proactive approach and embarks upon such projects in advance of being awarded licenses. We agreed to keep in touch and to see if we could work together on any potential projects with Statoil and also to see if we could liase with the head office in Norway.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Brazil – Rio de Janeiro - El Paso

An introductory meeting was held with the person responsible for HR on the subject of consulting services for Allomax in which Dreamaid was also discussed. The response on Dreamaid was positive and we agreed to keep in contact for future potential projects.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Brazil – Rio de Janeiro - Total

A meeting was held with the head of Finance, HR and Administration in which Dreamaid was discussed. He was very impressed with the idea and agreed to mention Dreamaid in the Paris head office and to help us develop a relationship with this very impressive French oil company which has operations all over the world and much of Western Africa. However, he felt that Dreamaid was potentially applicable within Brazil and we would maintain contact.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Brazil – Rio de Janeiro - Valor Economico

As a result of UKTI promotion an appointment was set with the highly respected reporter Claudia Schuffner to discuss the Dreamaid business and Charity for a possible article to be published nationwide in this financial ‘heavy’ equivalent to the Financial Times in the UK.

A wide ranging discussion was held on the subject of Dreamaid and Claudia expressed her enthusiasm for what we were doing. She stated that she wanted to buy an elephant from Thailand that she had seen and how much she enjoyed the site.

A very impressive article has appeared in the newspaper on Friday the 14th of August across Brazil in which a photo of myself appears on the leading edge of the supplement on “Valor Empresas & Tecnologia” – Companies and Technologies. Her article is very well written and captures what Dreamaid is about and our great potential to simultaneously help people whilst building a sustainable business.

The article is shown below.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Cláudia Schüffner, do Rio
Texto: A- A+

Léo Pinheiro/Valor

McAtter, engenheiro de perfuração de petróleo, criou o para que seja um canal de vendas de artesãos
O inglês Peter McAtter criou um portal na internet que oferece objetos feitos por artesãos de vários países que podem ser vendidos por preços mais justos do que se tivessem intermediários. O "" traz um modelo onde McAtter reúne negócios e caridade. O que ele quer ver prosperar na internet são as compras justas através do portal, onde o artesão pede o preço que quiser e se responsabiliza pela entrega do produto. Se uma venda for realizada, 10% do valor fica com o portal.
O artista também é incentivado a doar qualquer quantia que esteja a seu alcance para a Dreamaid Caridade, que promove ações sociais como a compra de computadores e equipamentos de fotografia para jovens sem acesso a esse tipo de tecnologia, que pode ajudá-los a ter uma profissão sustentável e vender seus trabalhos através da internet.
É um negócio diferente porque inverte o costume de se pagar um valor ínfimo para o artista, com o intermediário ficando com a maior parte, afirma o executivo. McAteer conta que descobriu na Indonésia árvores cortadas e compradas por US$ 1 que eram então revendidas na China por US$ 9 mil. Ali, a experiência mostrou que o melhor negócio era comprar um pouco mais caro a árvore e ensinar a população a fabricar móveis.
"Queremos fazer isso no Brasil", explica o britânico, que é engenheiro de perfuração e lida com uma das áreas mais complexas da indústria de petróleo. "É bom para o meio ambiente e ajuda o artesão a melhorar o produto a ser vendido". No Brasil a empresa já tem um projeto em potencial com a petroleira BP dentro e fora do Reino Unido. Trata-se de um projeto para capacitar fotógrafos moradores de favelas. "Responsabilidade social e preços justos são coisas que fazem sentido para empresas que têm ações em bolsa", observa.
O portal DreamAid levou dois anos para ser desenvolvido, com financiamento de outra empresa de McAteer, a Sysmax, uma consultoria especializada em gerenciamento de risco no setor de petróleo e gás criada pelo executivo. "Mas os recursos da minha própria empresa têm limites".
Lançado recentemente, o portal já tem 5 mil produtos oferecidos por artistas da Tailândia, México, China, India, França, Espanha e até do Brasil, que mostra o potencial do negócio. Entre os artistas brasileiros está o pintor Jaime Trindade, com quadros retratando populações indígenas. Mas também são oferecidas tecidos fabricados no Laos e cerâmica tailandesa.
"Esperamos que o negócio cresça, e que mais pessoas possam oferecer produtos para quem quer comprar", afirma McAteer, dizendo que espera um faturamento de US$ 20 milhões em dois ou três anos. Na semana passada o empresário visitou artesãos no Embu das Artes, em São Paulo.

Copyright Valor Econômico S.A. Todos os direitos reservados. É proibida a reprodução do conteúdo desta página em qualquer meio de comunicação, eletrônico ou impresso, sem autorização escrita do Valor Econômico S.A.

Brazil – Rio de Janeiro - Chevron

A series of meetings were held with Chevron on various topics in which the potential for working with Dreamaid was raised. As a result of these conversations we were passed to the person responsible for CSR within the company.

A meeting was held and in which the lady concerned said that she had researched the Dreamaid website and in 28 years of working in Brazil in this area she had not seen what Dreamaid was offering. It was the first time she had seen a company and a charity working in unison to support and market their products.

Such was her enthusiasm that she has given us several key contacts to develop our relationship with and encouraged to apply for Chevron sponsorship formally in the next two weeks for a substantial sum of money. This will be part of a Corporate wide initiative and we are delighted to be invited to participate.

We have some work cut out to bring this to a satisfactory conclusion for all concerned but it is wonderful to have the opportunity to do so.

Peter McAteer

Brazil - Rio de Janeiro

OGX Petróleo e Gás Ltda & EBX

Following a meeting discussing personnel supply by Allomax the subject of Dreamaid was raised with the manager of HR and she was so impressed with the idea that she brought the person responsible for Social Responsibility in to the room.

A follow up meeting was organised with the head of Social Responsibility and Sustainability for the overall parent company EBX. Each meeting was full of enthusiasm and in the latter meeting it was decided to hold a group wide CSR meeting with all of the heads of the individual businesses (mining, energy, oil and gas) to see if there were projects which could work with Dreamaid in the immediate future.

An EBX meeting will be held this coming week and we will liase to discuss possible ways forward. It was recognised that the potential for a tie in with the sustainable production of arts and crafts from wood and the area of the North East of Brazil held particular interest.

Overall a great set of meetings with some great people who shared a vision.

Peter McAteer

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Mexico City - Pemex

Pemex is the Mexican national oil company and a huge corporation with activities covering wide areas of Mexico onshore and offshore.

As part of Allomax and Sysmax (Dreamaid sponsors) efforts to expand overseas Dreamaid was discussed in a meeting with a Sub-Director of Pemex. He agreed to pass the details on to the person dealing with Corporate Social Responsibility and said how much he liked the Dreamaid concept.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Mexico City - IMP

As part of Allomax and Sysmax (Dreamaid sponsors) efforts to expand overseas Dreamaid was discussed in a meeting with a Director of IMP (the technical and research entity associated with the National Oil Company). The Director agreed to pass the details on to the person dealing with Corporate Social Responsibility and said how much he appreciated our efforts to help the Mexican people attain self sustainability.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Mexico City - British Chamber of Commerce

A meeting with Chris Sladen (President) was held in which Chris outlined some of the issues of dealing with the Mexican market and some of the companies that Dreamaid was targeting. Chris is a real gentleman and was appreciative of our efforts in Mexico. It was a pleasure to talk to Chris about some of the wider issues facing Mexico and the market place we are active in.

Dreamaid joined the Chamber and we will be keen to see if we can work with some of the larger corporations which are active in Mexico from the UK. We received the offer to communicate using the monthly newsletter with over 5000 members, including many household corporate names.

Our plan is announce over a period of time our progress in Mexico and to seek the support of the companies that are members. It would be good to have the support of both international and Mexican companies in the country and especially good if some of these were leading UK companies.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Mexico - Press Conference UK Embassy Mexico City

View Video

With the assistance of the UK Embassy (UKTI) a press conference was held within the Embassy on the 29th of July.

I was at pains to stress that Dreamaid is a commercial entity leading a Charity and that to be successful in our attempts to support the poorer artisans we needed to be first a successful business. The larger the company becomes the more it can support and help those needing access to the internet and the marketplace.

I also stressed that we are seeking the support of the media to help us to help others and how powerful it would be if we could get famous artists and artisans on board to support us by selling their products and art on Dreamaid.

A TV crew from Projecto Cuarenta (Project / Channel 40) attended and performed an interview to be shown on national TV. This was a key result for the global tour and hopefully a real breakthrough for Dreamaid.

The presenter and the producer were highly impressed by Dreamaid and assured me that they would be keen to follow up the progress of Dreamaid in Mexico with further coverage. Projecto Cuarenta also has a Foundation which they said would probably be keen to work with Dreamaid. The team also said they would join our Dreamers and I look forward to welcoming them aboard.

The Public Relations part of the Lala Group (Mexico’s largest dairy producer) attended which was testimony to their support and greatly appreciated. I gave a presentation in which I outlined the wonderful reception we had from Cemex (the world’s third largest cement company) and Soriana (Mexico’s largest supermarket chain) too; outlining the potential projects that we were exploring with all three of these great corporations.

The editor of the Mexican equivalent of the Financial Times (El Financiero) also attended and performed an independent interview following the press conference. They have since put out a very encouraging Press Release which has been picked up by NotiSureste a news agency in the South East of Mexico. Their reaction was very favourable, demonstrating a clear understanding of the need for the Dreamaid commercial drive to pull people above the poverty line whilst the Dreamaid Charity could push from below by supporting them.

Two Mexican government departments also attended representing the area responsible for Indigenous People and Culture. They were very enthusiastic about Dreamaid and follow up meetings were scheduled.

The Press Conference was a resounding success with a small but highly focused group of people from key areas of the Mexican media, government and corporations. Although this proved an effective communications tool the follow up is critical and there is much work to be done in keeping the momentum going.

With special thanks to the team at UKTI.

Peter McAteer

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Dreamaid now supports multiple currencies

We are pleased to announce that Dreamaid now supports trading in multiple currencies.

Now as well as being able to list in Britsh Pounds(GBP) sellers can also list in US Dollars(USD) and Euros(EUR).

Coming soon we will have further multi-currency enhancements. Watch this space!

Dreamaid Development Team

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Mexico - Merida

Today was spent within a hammock making commune assisted by the Cemex company.

Their warmth and hospitality was humbling and we thoroughly enjoyed our time with the local people. My son and daughter demonstrated their hammock making skills and my son was offered a training position by the local ladies. (Well I offered his services to their loud laughter and applause)...

We are planning to buy a couple of their beautiful hammocks for our use in the UK and to have them sent by courier to avoid us having to carry them.

Donna Maria kindly gave us a seat hammock as a present. It was very special to her as it was her first product made after her training. Such was the enthusiasm of the commune to the Dreamaid approach to supporting them.

Almost everything is already in place with this group as they have a working commune, internet access and the support of Cemex to assist them in their development. By working together with Cemex we hope to be able to increase the sales of the hammocks both within Mexico and internationally. There are a few issues that need to be addressed but I am confident we can overcome them. Especially with the forward thinking people at Cemex in support.

Thanks to Carlos, Karen and Mariel of Cemex for their assistance in making this visit possible and we hope to be able to make the dreams of the local people come true. A very memorable day indeed :)

The quality of the workmanship is awesome. I've requested two for delivery to the UK as soon as they are online.

A wonderfully positive day in so many ways.

Peter McAteer

Mexico - Vayadolid

View Video

Along the road from Merida to Cancun is a small town which has a wide range of artists and artisans working across a number of products. We visited with a local Professor who was the webmaster for Yukutan Traditional and his colleagues from the hammock, embroidery and dress making plus leather work areas.

Our hosts were warm and friendly and were captivated by the idea of Dreamaid. They had the same problems we had now witnessed in several areas where they simply had no access to the outside market place. Their products were bought by traders and sold in nearby towns for sometimes multiples of the original price they had received. 500% markups being not uncommon. This was a major concern to the people that created the products but they felt unable to do anything about it.

One producer of leather footwear was heartened to hear that he could go to his internet cafe already and upload pictures of his products and sell them now. A quick analysis of his prices suggested they may be too low. However, his quality was an issue in terms of the rubber used for the sole and it was suggested he consider importing better premoulded soles to gain a better price.

We agreed to take a look at the local Soriana supermarket to see if there was a potential for setting up a local Dreamaid kiosk to help the artisans of the area. The supermarket was particularly well suited to this having an external area which was apparently under utilised and could offer a good space in which to set up a PC with internet access and an area for the products to be photographed and sold on Dreamaid.

We shall pursue this potential with Soriana to see if they feel a trial in this area would be appropriate for them. An exciting prospect indeed...

A long weary day but well worth the effort :)

Peter McAteer

Mexico - Casa las Artesanias de Yukatan

An open discussion with the local government support foundation for artesans in the Yukatan peninsula gave substance to some earlier concerns. There were difficulties to be faced with Mexican legislation regarding taxation as many artisans operate outwith the tax environment.

Dreamaid may cause them to be more visible and this could put some artisans and artists off the idea of using Dreamaid. Also, the problem of internet access appeared to be very widespread across the area. However, our hosts were very appreciative of the potential for Dreamaid and agreed to assist us in contacting the artists and artisans in order to see if we could get them on board.

We also agreed to seek corporate support where possible to reach out to artists and artisans.

A visit to the shop run by the Foundation revealed a wide variety of products from the Yukutan ranging in both quality and style. There appeared to be a need for design input in some areas to widen the appeal of the products produced.

It was agreed that we would explore ways to work together to the mutual benefit of both Dreamaid and the Foundation and its artisans.

Thanks to Sylvia and Luz Elena for their time and a very rewarding discussion.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Friday, 24 July 2009

Mexico - Monterrey

Today was an amazing tour of two companies and a conference call to a third. The companies were Cemex (the world's third largest cement company), Lala (Mexico's largest dairy producer) and Sonaria (Mexico's largest supermarket chain).

I was not ready for the level of appreciation and support these people had for Dreamaid and was shocked to come away from the meetings with possible projects for the Dreamaid Charity and Dreamaid from all three of the companies.

Cemex has 14 coordinators liaising with around 160 projects within Mexico on social responsibility. The person I met there 'loved' Dreamaid and was very keen to progress towards a pilot project perhaps in our next location, Merida. We will be liasing with Cemex in the coming weeks to progress this and to see if we can expand to the other locations in which they support the people of Mexico. We talked of the efficiencies we can derive by using their infrastructure and our access to market. The potential for improving the lives of the people in their operating areas is great and we are determined to make their dreams come true.

Lala have already suggested they will attend our Press Conference in Mexico City next week and have tentatively committed to working with us within the Lala Foundation which is their vehicle for Corporate Social Responsibility. Here we talked of a specific opportunity in the desert area of Mexico where people are selling natural wax to a trader who then sells it for a 500% profit. If these people can access the market directly it could help transform their lives. We are planning how to make this happen.

Soriana had a group of artisans from Oaxaca in their store downstairs selling artisan products as part of a CSR project to help people from the poorer regions. However, this is an expensive way for the artisans to sell as it involves a lot of time away from home, travel and the carriage of goods that may or may not sell. We discussed the potential ways forward which could include setting up internet access within kiosks of regional stores, the support of local staff in consulting with the artisans to help them produce better and more profitable products and the possible setting up of stand alone Dreamaid Charity internet cafe's where artisans could sell their products online.

With all three companies we also laid the door open to other ways forward yet to be explored but agreed that a long term approach was necessary and required commitment on both sides.

All in all a very productive day. Tomorrow I fly south to meet my temporarily abandoned youngsters in Merida and we will be exploring the area of the Yukatan peninsula and one of the seven wonders of the world. Watch this space for more news!

Dreams can come true!

Peter McAteer

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Mexico Mayan People of Chiapas

San Cristobal de las Casas & San Juan Chamula

My son Tom joined Eve and I in Mexico City for the journey south to Chiapas.

Research by the UK Embassy staff suggested we should visit this area as there is a great deal of artisan work done in the area.

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We visited a great little commune of artisans at the Taller Laneteros in San Cristobal. Here they make paper products from discarded paper given by the local community. Products include books, cards, silk screen prints, posters etc.. We discussed how Dreamaid may be able to help this commune of 15 to 20 artisans by giving them better access to the market. They are planning to have a meeting of the commune to discuss how they might work with Dreamaid. Also Dreamaid is to consider seeking corporate sponsorship with a Mexican Company to see if we can assist the commune (and thereby their quite poor Mayan community) in improving their marketing and product development.

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We then visited a local community in San Juan Chamula which was a humbling experience. Young children sometimes begged us for money but most sold us hand made woven bracelets and one very young child carrying his younger brother in a sack on his back asked for about 25 UK pence or about 40 US cents for a photograph.

A memory that will stick with us was witnessing a chicken being sacrificed in a religious ritual to clear sins of a man in the Mayan church.

Mostly people were hard at work creating clothing and blankets and there was a very large market place filled with products of all kinds. This gave us a great insight in to how the local communities depend upon the sale of their artworks and artisan works to live.

We will post some pictures on the website soon to give you a better idea of the place. Tomorrow I will be meeting a company to discuss how we might work together to assist the artisans in this area.

I will keep you posted!

Best wishes,

Peter McAteer

Australia & Hawaii

Only a couple of days were spent in each of these locations and unfortunately there wasn´t enough opportunity to explore the potential for Dreamaid in Australia or Hawaii. As one of the co-founders (Mark Sivewright) now lives in Sydney this wasn´t too much of an issue.

Sadly we missed a large art fair in the North of Hawaii on the day that we were leaving. It would have been good to have met with the local artists and to have gauged their reaction.

We did have some very positive reactions in conversatons with potential buyers who were impressed by the whole concept so let´s just keep the message rolling!

Most of the week was spent preparing for both Mexico and Brazil where the Dreamaid action will really be focused and hopefully yield some exciting results...

Dream on!

Peter McAteer

Sunday, 12 July 2009


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A week spent in Jakarta was not expected to offer much opportunity for Dreamaid as I was working on a project full time. However, a chance meeting with Matthias Rhein from the Department for International Development turned this in to a great week for Dreamaid.

Matthias has travelled the world in many guises and was very impressed by the potential of Dreamaid to help him fulfill his new role of 'squaring the circle' of poverty, the environment and development. He introduced me to a local hero Onte who has turned around the fortunes of local foresters by adopting international standards (FFS) for forestry management. As Indonesia accounts for a substantial part of the global carbon cycle (24%) the rampant destruction of forests in recent years as taken its toll. However, by using internationally recognised standards of management this trend can be reversed.

How does this affect Dreamaid? By working with those artists and artisans that use approved methods we can help them to achieve greater yields from their crops. This will reduce the amount of wood that needs to be cut and improve the climate. But also as a young tree absorbs carbon and an old one emits it, encouraging active use of trees helps the environment too. Therefore encouraging artisans to use eco-friendly managed crops improves the environment and also offsets the effects of Dreamaid's encouragement of international trade which could potentially increase emissions.

Matthias introduced me to a number of his international cohorts and his colleague Dominic in Indonesia. They are doing amazing things in this area and are truly dedicated to improvement of not only the Indonesian (and global) community but also of the environment.

We are now looking for projects to work on together and are delighted to have met by luck in the hotel gym. I am amazed at how frequently good fortune follows me in the development of Dreamaid.

Best regards,

Peter McAteer

Sunday, 5 July 2009


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I spent a few days in Vietnam seeking support for the Dreamaid Charity from the oil and gas companies there. The reception we got was very good from all the companies and we have been referred within their organisations. Fingers crossed!

I visited a Handicapped Handicrafts place where people with various ailments made the most incredible artworks. I bought a large eggshell 'painting' which I have had shipped back home. This is the kind of organisation which would be good to support with the Dreamaid Charity as these invalids are totally dependent upon their craft to eat.

An amazing discussion with a man working in Vietnam demonstrated the difficulties in this country. He told me of his personal work with deprived families in his spare time. One story was of a family that lost their father in a lightening strike and being unable to support her three children the mother was forced to send her five year old daughter out to the streets. At eight weeks old the girl had lost an eye after suffering an infection, he bought her a glass eye and supported her through education at the orphanage.

Some of these young people make beautiful handbags, paintings, cuddly toys and embroidery which there are unable to sell resulting in a stock pile of unwanted goods. Perhaps Dreamaid could be of assistance in widening the appeal of the products and enabling the stock to get to a wider market than just the expatriate people in Ho Chi Minh...

He told of another child that was taken from the orphanage by her mother to be sold for $150 and how they had eventually found her and brought her back to safety.

We are looking at ways that we can link the Dreamaid Charity with the support of large companies in the area to try to avoid this desperation occurring by allowing them to gain more from their skills.

I left Vietnam with a heavy heart knowing that there was so much to do but knowing also that we could help and in doing so bring to the market the kind of products that our buyers would get a special warm feeling from owning.

Best wishes,

Peter McAteer

Monday, 29 June 2009

Dreamaid gathering momentum...

So that we can spread the word about Dreamaid Peter McAteer has embarked on a global trip. He is hoping to meet artists who may benefit from the Dreamaid model and also to talk to companies about sponsorship of artists in their particular part of the world.

Peter will be in Ho Chi Minh City until Friday 3rd July then:
Jakarta between 4th and 11th of July
Cairns, Australia between 12th and 15th July
Honolulu between 16th and 18th of July
Mexico City between 18th and 31st July
Rio de Janeiro between 2nd and 6th August

If you would like more details about where Peter will be please drop us an email.

Dreamaid launched in Portuguese

Last week was spent in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro discussing the newly released Portuguese version of Dreamaid and seeking the support of large companies in helping the Dreamaid Charity.

A visit to some of the key artist areas revealed emotional support for Dreamaid with some people being brought to tears by the opportunity that Dreamaid represents for them and their fellow artists. The welcome was heart warming and demonstrated that the potential for serving Brazilian buyers and sellers with Dreamaid is significant.

The response from major companies for supporting the Dreamaid Charity was also very encouraging and we will be seeking to assist poor artists in some key areas soon.

Highlights included Paulo who taught young beggars to make crayons from discarded wood so they didn't have to beg; Mario the sculptor who works in the market square to share his skills and was moved to tears when hearing of Dreamaid; Regina who I bought my daughter's Peace bracelet from and who is now selling on Dreamaid; Jaime's incredible paintings that are now available on Dreamaid; the potential to enable Favela young people to sell their photographic prints through Dreamaid, sponsored by a global company.

Such is the intrigue in Dreamaid that we were followed by a film team for a potential documentary on an internationally recognised TV network as part of a series on international entrepreneurial ventures. Hopefully there will be more on this later...

Best wishes,

Peter McAteer

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Improved Imaging

Hi Guys,

Some good news.... You may have noticed on some occasions your product photos may not have been getting displayed optimally.

Im pleased to announce we have now rectificed this issue and all new photo uploads will now be manipulated automatically to look great on Dreamaid :-)

Look forward to some new imaging features coming soon, including a much sought after watermarking feature that will allow you to add whatever words you like to your images....

More news soon....

Murray Cormack
Lead Developer

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Up & Running!!

Our plan for a soft launch is going well and we are officially in business ;)

Everything is going well and we are obtaining some wonderful support from our growing community of Dreamers.

Thank you for your heartwarming comments and often glowing references.

Please now feel free to publicise the Dreamaid site as far and wide as you possibly can! We are looking for many more buyers and sellers to join our Dreamers.

Our intention is to grow with integrity but to grow for sure!

Best wishes and sweet dreams!

Peter McAteer

Monday, 20 April 2009

Managing Director

As Dreamaid fast approaches its official launch date of the 1st of May we celebrate our first New Dreamers joining our community! And their successful sales and donations to the Dreamaid Charity! It has been an exciting weekend with a lot happening and this is just the start... Thank you all for your enthusiasm and kind understanding as we go through our early teething problems ;)