Media Release

24 May 2024




Drink Botanical Ireland who are supported by Local Enterprise Office Dublin City, were winners at this year’s National Enterprise Awards. The awards, which took place at the Round Room in the Mansion House in Dublin, were in their 24th year and run annually by the Local Enterprise Offices.


Drink Botanical Ireland took home the One to Watch award at the ceremony. Drink Botanicals are a supplier of premium dried garnishes, natural-based syrups, and cocktail ancillaries to both consumer and industry customers at home and abroad. Founded in 2017 by Laura McCarthy when she was still a marketing student in TU Dublin. There she noticed a gap in the market. With the growing interest in luxury drinks, she saw an opportunity to create a product that would allow consumers to make cocktails and mocktails in the company of friends and family. She visited many bars that were serving drinks with botanicals such as juniper berries and hibiscus, but noticed that there was no product available in retail stores for consumers to recreate this product. Laura has further expanded the Drink Botanicals Ireland offering and their range includes; natural based syrups, premium dried garnishes and cocktail/mocktail kits.


With global expansion, they have found success in international markets like the United Kingdom and United States via Amazon, and have secured a UAE distribution contract. Committed to excellence, they stand out by delivering only top-quality products.


Drink Botanicals Ireland employ 5 full time and 2 part time staff members currently and have plans to grow their employees in 2024.           


Accepting the Award, Laura McCarthy, founder of Drink BotanicalsIreland said “I am so proud to represent Dublin City at the National Enterprise Awards. There are so many other great businesses here and I’m so happy that we were able to come away with the One to Watch Award. Opportunities like this inspire me to continue striving for growth for my business and the great support from the Local Enterprise Office helps to make it happen.”


Greg Swift, Head of Enterprise, Dublin City Council said “Well done to Laura and her team on their great win here this evening. Laura has taken advantage of various LEO supports so it’s great to see a business supported by LEO Dublin City winning one of the awards. Drink Botanicals Ireland honoured tonight have made so much progress with the business in a short space of time particularly in the export markets that they really are ‘One to Watch’ and I hope they continue to grow from strength to strength going forward.”


Mary MacSweeney, Acting Executive Manager, Culture Recreation and Economic Services, Dublin City Council said “It was fantastic to see Laura and the team at Drink Botanicals Ireland win the One to Watch Award at the National Enterprise Awards. Over the last number of years Laura has been a great example of how to start building a business here in Dublin City, linking in frequently with the LEO in Dublin City Council to explore supports which she used to expand and bring Drink Botanicals Ireland to new heights both here in Dublin and in markets abroad.”


The overall winner at the National Enterprise Awards was Dreamdev Technologies who are supported by Local Enterprise Office Kildare. DreamDev was set up by Eoin Barry and Douglas Augiar in 2019 with the aim of utilising online tools and software to enable faster digitalisation for companies. Their flagship product, ‘the dot-star enterprise’ software platform enables software engineering teams to create their own bespoke software programmes which deliver results with significantly reduced resourcing requirements.


Announcing the award winners at the Mansion House and after earlier launching the new Local Enterprise Office Policy Statement, Minister Burke said; “The National Enterprise Awards are the highlight of the small business and enterprise calendar.  Year on year the diversity of businesses and the standard of companies that are coming through the process is getting stronger.  We should not be surprised given the innovation and endurance that businesses have shown in recent years.  We have some outstanding winners but the finalists on the whole have been excellent, and this is very much the start of their journey. 


“The new Local Enterprise Office Policy Statement I announced today sets out the vital role that LEOs have in fostering entrepreneurship and helping small businesses thrive every day across the country. The Policy Statement charts a clear roadmap of how LEOs will align their work with the priorities of the White Paper on Enterprise and ensure that their high-calibre offering continues into the future. I pay tribute to the great work of the current and former staff of the LEOs who, over the last 10 years, have helped and guided small businesses in Ireland which are at the heart of every town, village and community and are vital to our economy.”


Several other companies won across a range of categories at the Awards, which were established by the Local Enterprise Offices to celebrate the impact and quality of small businesses across the country.


Innovation Award

The winner of the Innovation Award was Cytidel.  The cybersecurity company, supported by Local Enteprise Office Mayo, has created software that helps cybersecurity teams to identify and prioritise the top cyber threats to a company.


Best Export Award

The winner of the Best Export Award was Eskimo Software.  The company, who are supported by Local Enterprise Office Carlow, have created a CRM and lead generation software package specifically for car dealerships to improve efficiency and sales. 


Best Start Up Award

The winner of the Best Start-Up Award was The Black Stuff.  The mens care business, who are supported by Local Enterprise Office Dun Laoghaire Rathdown, are creating over 10,000 handmade soaps a week and have utilised social media to create one of the fastest growing mens care brands in the country.


Green / Sustainability Award

The winner of the Green/Sustainability Award was Living Green.  The sustainable living company, supportered by Local Enterprise Office Donegal, create a range of products from organic compost and worm cast to wheatgrass and forzen shots.


This year’s winners share a €50,000 investment fund and eight regional winners were also announced on the night. 


Those winners are –


  • PRM Assist in the Dublin Region (backed by LEO Fingal)
  • Nutshed in the South West Region (backed by LEO Tipperary)
  • Watt Footprint in the Mid East Region (backed by LEO Westmeath)
  • Expat Taxes in the South Region (backed by LEO Waterford)
  • Brady’s Coffee in the South East Region (backed by LEO Wicklow)
  • Sleater Solutions in the North West Region (backed by LEO Sligo)
  • Zoma in the North East Region (backed by LEO Louth)
  • Grá Chocolates in the West Region (backed by LEO Galway)


Also honoured on the night were Bevcraft who won the Outstanding Achievement Award.  An example of a company who began with their Local Enterprise Office and then accessed support from Enterprise Ireland to grow their business globally. 


Established by friends Ciarán Gorman and Darren Fenton who wanted to create an international business with significant employment in their hometown of Mullingar.  Their independent canning business and their mobile canning function allowed any small brewer to can and brand their drinks on site.  They now have 8 locations across Europe, servicing 20 countries and handling over 100million cans per year.


Previous winners of the National Enterprise Awards include Irish Yoghurts (1998), Obelisk (2000), Simtech Aviation (2008), Digiweb (2004) and Design Pro (2013), Terra NutriTech (2018), Pestle & Mortar (2019), Bevcraft (2021) and Aqualicence in 2022. 


Last year’s winners were Advanced Cosmetics, supported by Local Enterprise Office Mayo.  The Ballina based company were set up Noreen Hackett in 2018, before launching to market in 2022.  As one of the only “concept to shelves” cosmetics companies in Europe they have achieved significant success, securing contracts with some of the biggest brand names in the cosmetics industry.


The National Enterprise Awards also celebrated 10 years since the inception of the Local Enterprise Offices in 2014 with several former winners attending on the evening.


The National Enterprise Awards are one of several initiatives that the Local Enterprise Offices run, to foster entrepreneurship across the country. Others include Local Enterprise Week, the Student Enterprise Programme, National Women’s Enterprise Day and Local Enterprise Showcase. The Local Enterprise Offices in local authorities are funded by the Government of Ireland through Enterprise Ireland. Established in 2014, the Local Enterprise Offices are the essential resource for any entrepreneur looking to start a business or any small business that is looking for support or advice to help them grow. Since their inception eight years ago, the Local Enterprise Offices have helped create over 70,000 jobs across the country. The LEOs work with thousands of client companies across Ireland in a diverse range of sectors offering mentoring, training, expert advice and financial supports to small businesses. For more information see www.LocalEnterprise.ie




For further information contact: Dublin City Council Media Relations Office



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Dublin City Enterprise Awards / Local Enterprise Office Dublin City

  T: (01) 222 5611 E: info@leo.dublincity.ie