Local Enterprise Office Irelands Best Young Entrepreneur Limerick Final 2015. Pictured Credit Brian Gavin Press 22. Mark Carey – Recycle Right winner Best Established Business, Chris Kelly – Talamh Innovations – Limericks Best Young Entrepreneur 2016, Kieran Normoyle – Ocean Survivor winner Best Start Up.
The Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Limerick has announced that a record number of participants have entered the Irelands Best Young Entrepreneur 2016 competition this year, for a chance to share in a local investment fund of €50,000.
The 61 local participants all aged between 18 and 35, are among the 1,842 entries from around the country competing this year.
The next stage in the €2 million investment fund competition is the business boot camps, which LEO Limerick is hosting in the Savoy Hotel on the 17th and 18th of November.
Boot camps play a major role in the IBYE competition, as participants benefit from business advice, mentoring and help with perfecting their enterprise pitches. The LEO Limerick run boot camps have modules such as: business strategy and revenue models; performance measures and financial planning and sources of finance designed to help more young entrepreneurs develop their business or business ideas.
When the boot camps come to an end, the next stage in the competition after judging is the county final, which will be held on the 5th of December in the Castletroy Park Hotel. LEO Limerick has an investment fund of up to €50,000 to award to six young entrepreneurs in the area across three categories – Best Business Idea, Best Start-Up Business and Best Established Business.
Now in its third year, interest in the competition is increasing every year. The total number of entries nationally was 1,842 this year, compared with 1,398 entries last year, which is up by 32%.
The significant rise in entries has been welcomed by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor.
“Young entrepreneurs are the employers of the future. I am delighted to see that more young entrepreneurs than ever before have entered the IBYE competition this year. Through IBYE, I want to ensure that their innovation, vision and drive, results in successful businesses that will create new jobs in the economy, and in all regions. IBYE provides a fantastic opportunity for aspiring and established young entrepreneurs to compete for investment funding, avail of expert business advice and form invaluable peer networks in enterprise boot camps where experience and knowledge can be shared,” she said.
“The Local Enterprise Offices around the country are an excellent resource for anyone thinking of starting or growing their business. I look forward to meeting these young entrepreneurs during the competition,” the minister added.
Eamon Ryan, Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Limerick said: “The level of entries to IBYE in Limerick is up 60% this year and is the highest on record. This reflects the potential that exists amongst younger age groups that needs to be nurtured. So strong has been the interest, we have put on an extra day of workshops for everyone that applied to the new ideas section. After that, our focus is to select the young entrepreneur entrants who will go forward to the boot camps. Everyone who participates in the Best Young Entrepreneur 2016 boot camps will have access to expert business guidance and mentors who will help them face and overcome challenges in developing their business.”