Izmoo founder scoops top prize in Louth Young Entrepreneur competition

Three brilliant young entrepreneurs selected to represent Louth

IBYE MAy 2019 Winners

Young entrepreneurs from all over Louth gathered at the Monasterboice Inn yesterday for the County Louth Finals of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur 2019.

Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE) is a competition for entrepreneurs aged 18-35. The Local Enterprise Office in each county runs their own competition, each selecting a winner in 3 categories: Best Idea, Best Start-Up and Best Established Business. Each county has a €50,000 investment fund to share between the winners and runners-up.

Last night’s competition was hard fought across all three categories and the judges had a tough time selecting the winners from the brilliant line up. The winners and runners-up are as follows:

IBYE 2019 Izmoo Winner

Best Start-Up Business: Orla Stafford, Izmoo

Twenty year Orla Stafford, from Drogheda, is the founder of the multi-award winning Izmoo Gelato company. Started in Drogheda in January 2018, but now about to open her second retail outlet in Rosslare, Orla also “scooped” the overall county winner of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur for Louth. A first year student of E-Commerce and Retailing in TU Dublin, Orla is a young entrepreneur with strong vision and big dreams.

Daniel McLoughlin of Rocksalt Café, Blackrock was the runner-up in the Best Start-Up category.

Best Established Business: Evelyn Garland, Simply Fit Foods

Evelyn Garland her partner Luke Judge started Simply Fit Foods in September 2016. Their range of delicious, healthy ready meals have taken the Irish market by storm and are now stocked in SuperValu, Centra, Applegreen and, starting in June, Tesco. Evelyn’s vision is to build a global health-food brand synonymous with healthy living and delicious dishes. The company are moving into the Northern Ireland market this summer and launching a vegan, snack and breakfast range later in the year.

Gary Reilly of Your Way Ireland was runner-up in the Best Established Business category.

Best New Idea: Conor Kerley, Setanta Nutrition Science

A Dundalk native, Conor Kerley is a Doctor of Human Nutrition and Dietetics who has developed a natural nutritional supplement that can help change the lives of people all over the world suffering with diabetes, high blood pressure and other chronic conditions. By lowering blood sugar, inflammation, fats and cholesterol, his supplement will help prevent and treat debilitating conditions. Winner of the Best New Idea Conor has already developed the prototype, is in the process of applying for a patent and starts clinical trials next month. With all of this in hand, he plans to launch his product within the next year.

Charlie Donnelly of Ducks in a Row was runner up in the Best New Idea category.

Each winner and runner-up receives valuable investment in their business. All participants in the finals received valuable business support to help grow and strengthen their business. County winners will move forward to the Regional Finals on 12th June at the Nuremore Hotel, Cavan.  They will represent Louth as they compete with their fellow winners from Meath, Cavan and Monaghan for a place in the National Finals. The Regional Finals will reduce the 93 County Winners down to 24 National Finalists.

Speaking at the award ceremony, Louth’s Head of Enterprise Thomas McEvoy said: “Though these finalist are young, be under no illusion, they are “entrepreneurs” first and “young” second. Some of the brilliant young entrepreneurs who come through this process really are just breath-taking and the competition in Louth was extremely tough.”

Keep up with the progress of IBYE at www.ibye.ie or on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.