Local Enterprise Office continues search for Young Entrepreneurs

Young entrepreneurs in Clare with a business that is at least two years old are being encouraged by the Local Enterprise Office Clare to enter this year’s ‘Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur’ (IBYE)  competition

The Action Plan for Jobs initiative is aimed at those aged between 18 and 30 and the Local Enterprise Office has an investment fund of €20,000, to present to a “best established” business owner, based in the locality.

Supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through Enterprise Ireland, the competition is designed to seek out and support entrepreneurial talent across the country.

A total investment fund of €50,000 is on offer through the Local Enterprise Office, €20,000 of which, will go to the ‘Best Established Business’ winner.  A further €20,000 investment fund is on offer for the ‘Best Start-Up’ winner locally, with €10,000 on offer to the ‘Best New Idea’ winner.

Last year’s IBYE winners from the area were Eric Gargiulo of Delivery Guys Ltd., Ennis (Best Established Business), Regina Tierney of Celtic Fusion Design, Kilnamona (Best Start-Up Business) and Steve Markham of hAppie, Ennis (Best Business Idea).

Last year’s local winner in the Best Established Business category used the €20,000 investment to buy equipment and machinery.

“One of the three categories this year is called ‘Best Established Business’ and that’s open to anyone aged 30 or under, who set up their own business more than two years ago," explained Padraic McElwee, Head of Enterprise from the Local Enterprise Office Clare.

He added: "Through IBYE, they can grow and develop their businesses further, gaining investment, skills and connections that can open up new markets and opportunities. To start accessing the supports now on offer, we’re encouraging young entrepreneurs to get in touch with us here at the Local Enterprise Office and to visit www.ibye.ie.”

Encouraging those aged between 18 and 30 to apply for this year’s competition, the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton T.D., said: “Over 1,000 people entered IBYE last year, with more than 400 young entrepreneurs benefitting from business bootcamps, mentoring or investment prizes. Focussing on job creation, the competition is open to everyone with their own business or innovative ideas for a new one. An investment fund of €50,000 is now available in every one of the 31 Local Enterprise Offices, to help young entrepreneurs set-up and grow their businesses, accelerating job-creation in every region of the country.”

‘Best Established Business’ national winners and finalists from the 2014 competition included Dean Gammell of the Group System in Westmeath (group booking software), Myles Murray of PMD Solutions in South Cork (medical devices and technologies), Pat Divilly from Pat Divilly Fitness in Galway (online training),  and Rhona Togher from Restored Hearing in Sligo (solutions for chronic tinnitus). Jamie White from Youth Nation in Dublin City (youth communications agency), Tom Ryan from Adsmart in Tipperary (marketing services), fashion designer, Niamh O’ Neill from Louth  and Shane Byrne of Showoff in Wicklow (mobile app development)  were also among last year’s finalists.


The closing date across all three categories for Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition is Friday, 21st August. Entry is free on-line and full details are available through www.ibye.ie, or by searching #IBYE on social media.