Monday 5th October 2015: Christopher Kelly of Talamh, a provider of tech solutions to the agriculture sector, was also named winner of the 'Best Start-Up Business' category at the Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Limerick Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.
Publish Date: Monday 5th October 2015
An 18-year-old Clarina businessman has been named overall winner of Limerick's Best Young Entrepreneur competition.
Christopher Kelly of Talamh, a provider of tech solutions to the agriculture sector, was also named winner of the 'Best Start-Up Business' category of the competition, which was organised by the Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Limerick. His company's Blue-Box product aims to achieve significant savings for Irish farmers on their fertiliser bills by identifying what parts of the farm most need fertilising.
Christopher Kelly, Cllr. Liam Galvin, Mayor of the City and County of Limerick & Garry Lowe of Whizzkids Training. Photo: Brian Gavin / Press 22
Kieran Normoyle (25, Patrickswell) of Deviate Aspire, which is currently developing a simple to use technology that mitigates the effects of hypothermia, won the 'Best New Business – Trading up to 24 months' category.
Mark Sheahan (29, Grange) of Recycle Right was named winner of the 'Best Established Business – Trading more than 24 months' category. The domestic Waste Collection & Recycling service currently has in excess of 5,000 customers, 9 staff and is one of the fastest growing collection companies in Ireland.
The three local category winners, who will share a total investment fund of €50,000 being offered through LEO Limerick, now proceed to a regional competition with the winners from the region progressing to the national stage of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE) competition.
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 and features an Investment Fund of €100,000 to be shared among the national winners.
Kieran Normoyle (25, Patrickswell) of Deviate Aspire, won the 'Best New Business – Trading up to 24 months' category at the Limerick LEO Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. Photo: Brian Gavin / Press 22
Addressing the awards ceremony in the Castletroy Park Hotel on Thursday night, Cllr. Liam Galvin, Mayor of the City and County of Limerick, said: "This competition fills me with confidence and strengthens my faith in the ability of our young business men and women to become future business leaders. Their commitment and dedication to the development of new and existing business, bodes well for the Limerick economy."
Mayor Galvin also praised LEO Limerick for its in work in "showcasing the business acumen of Limerick's young business men and women."
"LEO Limerick has worked closely with many small and medium enterprises in helping them to expand their operations," he said. "Recent years have not been easy for SMEs and entrepreneurs in general in terms of accessing the necessary supports and training to develop their businesses. However, the advent of the LEO network across Ireland has delivered an all-in-one outlet for businesses."
Mr. Eamon Ryan, Head of Enterprise, LEO Limerick, said: "LEO Limerick looks forward to supporting all of this year's finalists over the coming months and years by assisting them to further develop their business models. We will also be supporting our three category winners as they proudly fly the flag for Limerick, competing against other young entrepreneurs in the region for a place at the prestigious national final."
The local stage of the competition attracted applications from young people, aged 30 and under, from across Limerick. After a full review of applications, 15 finalists were shortlisted and took part in Business Boot Camps.
The 15 local finalists were Christopher Kelly (Talamh), Ciaran Prenderville, Aoife Howard (The Good Food Goddess), Alan Brereton (Alda Concepts Ltd.), Ethan O'Brien (Jump A Grade) (Best Start-Up Business), Darragh Bourke (Paw Pals), David O'Shea (nTrai Ltd.), Marie Curtin (Temple Dairy), Eric McNulty (McNulty's Low Cost Fuels), Paddy Finn (Electricity Exchange), Kieran Normoyle (Deviate Aspire) (Best New Business – Trading up to 24 months), and Mark Sheahan (Recycle Right), Shane O'Neill (Sidetrack Media & SONARC), Paul Ryan (HighNelly Bikes Ltd.) Mark Carey (Steamboat Music) (Best Established Business – Trading more than 24 months).
Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE) competition was first launched in 2014 by An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny and is an integral part of the Action Plan for Jobs.
Mark Sheahan (29, Grange) of Recycle Right was named winner of the 'Best Established Business - Trading more than 24 months' category at Limerick LEO Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards. Photo: Brian Gavin / Press 22
In all, eight regional finals are due to take place during November:
- Clare, Limerick, Kerry and Tipperary
- Carlow, Wicklow, Wexford and Kilkenny
- Dublin City, Fingal, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown, Dublin South
- Kildare, Laois, Offaly and Westmeath
- Louth, Meath, Cavan and Monaghan
- Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim and Longford
- Galway, Mayo and Roscommon
- Cork City, South Cork, Cork North and West and Waterford