Search underway for Limerick's best young Entrepreneur

MEDIA RELEASE
For Immediate Release
Friday, 23 May 2014

Search underway for Limerick’s Best Young Entrepreneur under 30
- Investment of up to €25,000 available for winner

Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan, T.D., and the recently launched Limerick Local Enterprise Office (LEO) today anno unced details of a new competition to find Limerick’s Best Young Entrepreneur under 30.

€50,000 will be invested in the business models of Limerick's three winning entrepreneurs who will also proceed to regional and national finals with the aim of finding Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur. The overall winner of Limerick’s Best Young Entrepreneur will receive an investment of up to €25,000.

The competition is being coordinated nationally by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation, and will see a total fund of €2million being made available to invest in winning businesses in every county in Ireland.

Mentoring, marketing and other supports will also be available to participating businesses at various stages of the competition, which is open to individuals aged 30 and under. The competition will be judged under three categories, namely best new idea, best start-up business and best established business.

Launching the Limerick competition Minister for Finance Michael Noonan said: "Ireland's future competitiveness depends on the entrepreneurial skills of local SMEs and it is incumbent on the Government to work in conjunction with all enterprise agencies in the country to create a supporting environment for these businesses."

"This project, which is an integral part of the Action Plan for Jobs 2014, has been developed as a mechanism to promote entrepreneurship as an opportunity to all sectors, levels and people aged 30 and under. I hope this initiative will help to inspire potential entrepreneurs and to encourage investment in both Limerick and across Ireland," added Minister Noonan.

Eamon Ryan, LEO Limerick Head of Enterprise explained: "We are delighted to organise the Limerick stage of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur as it will help to showcase the important role that the Local Enterprise Office has to play in developing local enterprise plans and putting micro and small business at the heart of job creation locally."

Combining the resources of the Limerick City and County Enterprise Boards and the Local Authority’s business support units, LEO Limerick was officially launched earlier this week to deliver services and support to the micro and small business sectors on behalf of Enterprise Ireland.

Mr. Ryan continued: "The aim of the initiative is to encourage and support a culture of entrepreneurship among young people, to promote entrepreneurship as a career choice, and to encourage the establishment and development of new innovative businesses by young entrepreneurs. This is hugely important for job-creation as two thirds of all new jobs are generated by businesses in the first five years of existence – more start-ups and a thriving entrepreneurial culture will lead to more jobs being created."

Mr. Ryan said the Limerick stage of the competition is open to everyone with an innovative business idea, including individuals, venture teams, partnerships, existing businesses with a new idea, and people overseas who will headquarter in Limerick.

"Winners will be named in three categories as well as an overall winner who will be Limerick’s Best Young Entrepreneur. LEO Limerick will have a total fund of €50,000 to invest in the three winning businesses, according to criteria including the prospects and investment needs of each business," he added.

Limerick's three winning entrepreneurs, including the overall winner of Limerick’s Best Young Entrepreneur, will proceed to regional finals with winners identified in each category in Dublin, Mid-East, Midlands, South East, South West, Mid West, West and Border regions. These 24 businesses will then proceed to national finals to be held before the end of the year with winners once again being identified for each category as well as an overall winner who will be crowned Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur. There will be a total fund of €100,000 available for investment in the three winning businesses at the national finals, with the overall winner eligible for an investment of up to €50,000.

To find out more or to apply to become Limerick’s Best Young Entrepreneur under 30 go to www.localenterprise.ie/limerick or call 061-407499. The deadline for receipt of applications is 30th June 2014.

Who can apply?

Before you are prepared to submit here are some criteria that you need to check out
1. Age 30 years and under (at 31st December 2014).
2. Original and innovative idea, start-up or existing business add-on.
3. Applicants must own, control and manage their business Intellectual Property.
4. Not for profit and social entrepreneurship applicants must operate in a commercial domain.
5. You must be eligible to own, manage and operate a business in Ireland at the time of application.
6. Applicants from overseas who are eligible to operate a business in Ireland are encouraged to apply.
7. You must submit a preliminary application online or via your local enterprise office by the closing date of the 30th June 2014.
8. One project submission per applicant is allowed.
9. Existing businesses that wish to apply must be promoted by a young entrepreneur (30 years of age and under) and must have a new plan to further develop the business.
10. If you are under the age of 18 at the 31st of December 2014 we will require parental consent in order for you to participate in the competition.

Last update:23/05/2014

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