A Clarina-based business man who aims to revolutionise how the world approaches search and rescue operations is in the running to be named Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE) for 2019.
22-year old Eoghan Mulcahy will represent Limerick and the Mid-West Region in the National Finals of IBYE in the Best Idea Category with his business idea called Deepseek, which uses the power of artificial intelligence to automate rescue missions using unmanned robotic systems.
Eoghan along with the 23 other finalists across three categories met with Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys. and Junior Business Minister Pat Breen at Government Buildings in the lead up to the IBYE National Final.
The finalists had the opportunity to discuss their businesses and ideas with the Ministers ahead of the grand final, which takes place this Sunday (15 September) in Google HQ in Dublin.
The 24 entrepreneurs also attended a pitch-training day at Google HQ in Dublin where they were given extensive pitch training and they had the chance to meet their fellow finalists for the first time.
The IBYE programme is run by the 31 Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) and is funded by the Government of Ireland with the support of the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation and Enterprise Ireland.
Eamon Ryan, Head of LEO Limerick wished Eoghan the best ahead of the final; “Eoghan has been an exceptional entrepreneur to work with right through the IBYE process. He has an excellent attitude to furthering his business and that makes our job a lot easier. He is a credit to Limerick and a further example of how the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in the region. We wish him the very best of luck in the National Final and we look forward to continuing to work with him beyond the Final to help him grow his business.”
Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys said: “The IBYE programme has been a hugely successful initiative of the Government with an investment fund of €2 million. Since its inception in 2014, it has attracted over 7,000 applications and has provided our young entrepreneurs with the peer-to-peer experience and contacts that open doors to help them on their entrepreneurial journey now and into the future. These finalists are Ireland’s very best young business minds and, whatever the result in the final, the supports will be there for them to continue in business.”
Minister for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen T.D. added: “This year’s finalists represent the significant breadth and diversity of enterprises that characterise Ireland’s entrepreneurial landscape. It is important that we encourage these bright young minds and give them the full range of supports that will allow their ideas and dreams into business realities. Making it to the final is already a great achievement and one that should give them great confidence in driving their businesses forward.”
Oisin Geoghegan, Chair of the Network of Local Enterprise Offices, said; “IBYE is a key competitive programme provided by Local Enterprise Offices. It offers young entrepreneurs at different stages of their development a fantastic opportunity to avail of expert mentoring and pitch training as well as guidance and validation from experienced businesspersons and analysts. It is the perfect start for these entrepreneurs and their journey has been supported all the way by their Local Enterprise Office. They have worked closely with them to fine tune their ideas and business plans, hone their pitching and to bring out the best in them. That is why they are finalists, they have the qualities to be here and be a huge success in Irish business and the Local Enterprise Offices will be there to support them all the way.”
Martin Corry, Enterprise Ireland, said “The Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur programme has not just created great entrepreneurs, it has helped create great businesses. These are businesses that are employing people across the country, helping to support communities and also bolstering Ireland’s entrepreneurial reputation globally. Our previous winners and finalists are at the very top of their game and have gone on to be hugely successful both nationally and internationally. There’s no doubt that having made the Final this year and gone through the IBYE process, our class of 2019 will hit the same heights as those that have gone before them and perhaps may even exceed them!”
The finalists for this year’s Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur include a recent BBC Dragons’ Den participant, an entrepreneur using artificial intelligence drones for river rescues, a serial entrepreneur bringing shopping from your phone to your door, a 19-year-old whose skills learned in transition year now sees her employ 23 people, an entrepreneur using plant based nutrition to combat MS and diabetes and a young woman who is revolutionising the methods by which horses are bred.
The 24 IBYE Finalists for 2019 will be competing for a €100,000 fund across the three categories. The winner of the Best Business Idea will receive a €15,000 investment with the runner up securing a €5,000 investment. The Best Start-Up Business and Best-Established Business winners will receive a €25,000 investment each with the runners up in those categories receiving a €5,000 investment, while the 2019 Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur selected from the three category winners will receive an additional €20,000 investment.
The Final of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur takes place on Sunday 15 September at Google HQ in Dublin.
For more information on the competition go to www.IBYE.ie.
For information on Local Enterprise Office supports and programmes go to www.LocalEnterprise.ie.