Irish Business Design Challenge calls for Waterford applicants with €50,000 Prize Fund

The Design & Crafts Council Ireland has launched the Irish Business Design Challenge in partnership with the Department of Business, Innovation and Enterprise, the Local Enterprise Offices and Enterprise Ireland. 

The Irish Business Design Challenge is a competition in which micro, small and medium Irish businesses (MSMEs) across all sectors in Waterford and around the country are invited to share the challenges they are experiencing as a result of COVID-19 and the solutions they have designed to resolve and adapt to the current environment.

The aim of the Irish Business Design Challenge is to recognise the resilience and innovation of MSMEs in a year which has proven to be challenging for businesses as a result of COVID-19.  The competition will profile a selection of businesses over a number of weeks, during which an expert panel of judges and members of the public will have the chance to vote for their ‘hero business’.  Dearbhail McDonald, Author and Broadcaster, will chair the expert judging panel. 

Irish Design Challenge

The Irish Business Design Challenge is open to three categories of business including micro (1 – 10 employees), small (11 – 50 employees) and medium sized (51 - 250 employees).  There is an overall prize fund in excess of €50,000, with a €15,000 first prize for the winner of each category and 2,000 for the runner-up in each category.

Announcing the launch of the competition, CEO DCCI, Rosemary Steen said, “We are calling on micro, small and medium Irish businesses that have reinvented their overall working model, in order to adapt and diversify quickly to meet the challenges they are facing in the current economic environment.  We want to hear from businesses who have developed or redesigned their products or services to meet current and future needs.  Through the Irish Business Design Challenge, we want to harness the ingenuity of the SME sector, to help other businesses and communities across Ireland.”

Encouraging businesses in Waterford to enter before the October 28th deadline, Richie Walsh, Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Waterford said, “At Local Enterprise Office Waterford, we are in the privileged position to work with some of the most innovative small businesses in the county and for many of them, intelligent design is at the core of what they do.  In recent months, we have seen this come to the fore as many have had to redesign their existing products, or pivot to new ones linked to their supply chain.  The Irish Business Design Challenge, which is supported by Local Enterprise Offices, is a fantastic way to recognise these businesses and highlight some of the innovative and brilliant design that is out there across our county. We would encourage every small business in Waterford to take a look at this competition and see how they can benefit from entering.”

The Irish Business Design Challenge is open for entries until 28th October 2020.

For further information on the Irish Business Design Challenge or to apply for the competition please visit