IGNITE Bag Awards at Ireland's Best Young Entrepreneur Regional Finals
The IGNITE Graduate Business Innovation Programme and UCC was well represented at Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneurs Awards in Cork and Waterford.
Each Local Enterprise Office (LEO) - Cork City, South Cork, North & West Cork and Waterford - presented Awards in each of three categories: Best New Idea, Best Start-Up Business and Best Established Business with a New Add-On, as well as naming who would represent them at the National Awards in Dublin later in the year. The winners also receive investments of €10,000, €20,000 and €20,000 in the respective categories.
IGNITE participants and alumni are involved in 12 of the 33 businesses that were shortlisted across all three categories in the Cork region awards and a number of others involved UCC graduates.
IGNITE 2014 participants Richard Barrett of PunditArena and Sarah Dineen of Uniwink won the overall awards for South Cork and Cork City and will progress to the national awards.
Pundit Arena and Uniwink also won the Best New Start-Up Award for South Cork and Cork City, each of which brings with it an investment of €20,000.
Pundit Arena were in a very competitive category that included IGNITE alumni Stephanie Lynch of OnTheQT and Glenn Goggin of Ottera.
And in a clean sweep of the Best New Start-Up Awards, IGNITE 2015 participant, James Nagle of CryptoBroker won the Award for North & West Cork, again with an investment of €20,000.
Other IGNITE alumni that featured in the finals were Brendan Finucane of Vconnecta in a tough South Cork Established Business Category, Jayne Ronayne of KonnectAgain in a competitive Cork City Start-Up Category, John Burke of Carster,Paul McCarthy of BreathEasy and Andrew Hobbs cofounder of CLOSR (all South Cork/New Idea), Shane O’Brien of iSave (North & West Cork/New Idea) and Will Martin of LiveDuel (Cork City/New Idea).
Darren Hayes of DA Renewables won the Cork City Best New Idea Award, Darren has just completed an MSc (Marine Renewable Energy) in UCC, while Ian Kerins of EnduroPro won the South Cork Best New Idea Award, Ian completed an MSc (Innovation, Commercialisation and Entrepreneurship) in UCC, and Cork City finalist AmpuAid was developed on UCC’s BioDesign programme in 2014.
Meanwhile, IGNITE 2015 participant Conor Browne of GRUMBLE won the Best New Idea Award for Waterford.