€50k investment fund available for Best Young Entrepreneur’s
By William O’Connor
THE SEARCH to find Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE) is getting underway in South Dublin County this week, through Local Enterprise Office South Dublin.
With a €2 million investment fund available, including a €50,000 investment fund for South Dublin winners, the enterprise initiative from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and Enterprise Ireland attracted 1,400 applications across the country last year and supported over 450 young entrepreneurs through training, mentoring and direct financial assistance.
The initiative is co-ordinated by all 31 Local Enterprise Offices and begins with a nationwide competition across three categories at county level: Best Idea, Best Start-Up Business and Best Established Business.
Around 450 applicants, across every Local Authority area, will be invited to regional ‘Entrepreneur Bootcamps’ in November, to help them develop their business and new venture ideas.
With an investment fund of €50,000, Local Enterprise Office South Dublin will award six investment prizes to three category winners and three runners-up, before the Regional Finals early next year.
The local winners in the Best Start-Up and Best Established Business categories will receive €15,000 each and the two runners-up will each receive €5,000. The Best Business Idea winner locally will receive an investment prize of €7,000 and the runner-up will receive €3,000.
Colm Ward with the Local Enterprise Office explains: “The €50,000 investment fund for our winners is a very important part of the competition and will help more young entrepreneurs to grow their businesses and create more jobs here locally.
“Other business supports, such as management training, networking and one-to-one mentoring are also at the heart of the IBYE competition.
“450 young entrepreneurs benefitted from these business supports last year, so the rewards are there for participants, as well as for the winners. Taking part in IBYE will help Ireland’s young entrepreneurs to move their businesses to the next level, whatever stage their business is at.”
The competition is now in its third year and last year’s local winners were: Pewter Games studios in the Best Business Idea category and Muscrai Suction Excavation Ireland Ltd in the Best Start-Up Business category. The county’s Best Young Entrepreneur for 2015 was Christopher Conlan of Pewter Games Studios.
To enter, young entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 and 35 in South Dublin County are being asked to visit the competition website at www.ibye.ie, to submit their entry online. The closing date to enter is Friday, October 14 and there is no entry fee.