(Kilkenny representatives at National Enterprise Awards, LoanITT founders and company directors John Duggan and Padraig Nolan)


One of County Kilkenny’s most impressive businesses, LoanITT Ltd have been announced as a finalist for this year’s National Enterprise Awards. The awards, an initiative of the Local Enterprise Offices, will take place virtually on the 11th February.

LoanITT were selected to represent Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny at the awards and will compete against 29 other finalists for a prize fund totaling €50,000. LoanITT was founded by company directors John Duggan, originally from Tullahought, and Padraig Nolan, a native of County Limerick. Headquartered in MacDonagh Junction, Kilkenny, LoanITT provides car, agricultural and commercial finance through a digitalised credit application. The company has developed a platform that streamlines the application process and removes the need for documentation.

The Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny has supported the promoters since the beginning of their entrepreneurial journey. In 2019, the company won Best Idea Category in Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition at County Level and represent Kilkenny in the National Finals. LoanITT has since become Ireland’s largest financial credit intermediary in the markets they serve, with plans to have over 40 people employed by the end of 2021.

Kilkenny has achieved national success at the awards. In 2019, Mechanical Modular Solutions in Castlecomer won the ‘Best Export Business’ title at the National Enterprise Awards while in 2015 MyBio, founded by Linda Nolan received the overall National Enterprise Award.

The finalists, selected by the Local Enterprise Offices in local authorities, represent a diverse range of businesses that are supported by the LEOs across the country. Now in their 22nd year, the awards celebrate small businesses and includes awards that recognise excellence in exporting, sustainability and innovation along with 8 regional awards and an overall National Enterprise Awards winner.

This year also sees the addition of two new award categories that reflect the challenging business conditions that companies have faced in 2020. The Pivot Award will be presented to a company who has successfully pivoted their business in the face of challenging conditions in the last 12 months. The Brexit Ready Award will be presented to a company who have excelled in their preparation for Brexit particularly where it would have created specific challenges for them as a business.

Fiona Deegan, Head of Enterprise, said; “It has been a challenging year for small businesses so this is a chance to highlight positive stories and businesses who have excelled in the face of unprecedented challenges. These businesses have been through a rigorous process of judging, auditing every aspect of their business and this in itself can be a huge benefit to them as they plan for the future. Whether they win or not these finalists are well positioned to follow in the footsteps of the great companies that have gone before them such as Mechanical Modular Solutions and MyBio, and as a network, the Local Enterprise Offices look forward to continuing to support them to help them grow.”

The National Enterprise Awards are one of a number of initiatives that the Local Enterprise Offices run to foster entrepreneurship across the country. Others include Local Enterprise Week, the Student Enterprise Programme and National Women’s Enterprise Day.

The Local Enterprise Offices in local authorities are funded by the Government of Ireland through Enterprise Ireland. Established in 2014, LEOs are an 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. The LEOs work with over 7,000 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