News and Views

UCC IGNITE companies create 250 jobs and raise €16 million In funding

10 Nov 2021
IGNITE Director Eamon Curtin and Michelle Dorgan, Programme Manager with IGNITE. PIC: Darragh Kane

The IGNITE programme at UCC, which nurtures startups from ideas to commercial reality, is celebrating ten years of success this month. The IGNITE programme has supported more than 120 start-ups led by recent graduates since its inception in 2011. Over that time the companies have created 250 jobs and raised more than €16 million in funding. 

Companies that have resulted from the IGNITE programme include ApisProtect, co-founded by Dr Fiona Edwards Murphy, Trustap founded by Conor Lyden. Legitfit, co-founded by Ryan O’Neill, Gearoid Collins and Ian O’Sullivan, Ezi-Vein, founded by Marie Casey and AnaBio Technologies, founded by Dr Sinead Bleiel.

IGNITE start-up founders have also been finalists in a number of awards and received various accolades including the EY Entrepreneur of the Year competition, listed as a European Forbes 30 under 30 and the Enterprise Ireland Student Entrepreneur of the Year Winner.

IGNITE Director Eamon Curtin said: “We are very proud of all that has been created over the last ten years here at IGNITE. Our start-ups are building innovative businesses in a variety of sectors including food and agriculture, health and medical, business and financial with a key focus on having an economic, environmental or social impact. 

“Since 2011, the programme has evolved to meet changing needs and we now offer a comprehensive range of workshops, seminars and guest speaker events. Participants also get access to a wide network with over 100 entrepreneurs, business owners and industry executives contributing to the programme every year.”

IGNITE is an international award-winning start-up incubation programme that helps entrepreneurs turn good ideas into scalable businesses. Since its inception in 2011, IGNITE has grown from strength to strength, initially running a one six-month incubation programme supporting 10 start-ups to now running two 12-month programmes supporting 20 start-ups every year.

As well as the full-time programme, IGNITE also offers a range of supports such as Start-Up Lab, an eight-evening programme, to help student and recent graduate founders to develop their ideas before progressing to IGNITE.

IGNITE is supported by University College Cork, Bank of Ireland, Cork City Council, Cork County Council, the Local Enterprise Offices of Cork City, South Cork and North and West Cork.

University College Cork

Coláiste na hOllscoile Corcaigh

College Road, Cork T12 K8AF