BUSINESS

Seedcorn competition offers €280,000 to help budding Louth businesses

Tia Clarke

Reporter:

Tia Clarke

Email:

tia.clarke@dundalkdemocrat.ie

Seedcorn competition offers €280,000 to help budding Louth businesses

Shane O'Hanlon, Funding for Growth Manager, InterTradeIreland, joined Jennifer McMahon, Principal, Seroba Life Sciences and Seedcorn judge

The largest business competition of its kind, Seedcorn offers a total cash prize fund of €280,000, with €100,000 earmarked for the overall winner. Since its inception in 2003, the total awarded to innovative companies stands at €4.5 million.

As well as the chance to win a substantial cash prize, entrants will benefit from guidance, advice and feedback from business experts, investors and other entrepreneurs through a series of business planning workshops and mentorship support throughout the competition.

Seedcorn entrants from Leinster have historically performed well at the competition with Nebula Innovations, a software and game development from Louth, through to last year’s regional final.

Shane O’Hanlon, Funding for Growth Manager, InterTradeIreland: “Louth is a hub of innovative business talent and we are keen that local start-ups and up-and-coming companies take advantage of the Seedcorn competition, responsible for many of the biggest success stories we have seen at InterTradeIreland.

“The support Seedcorn has given to new start and early-stage businesses goes beyond the €4.5 million cash funding. It includes invaluable advice from industry experts and the wider investment community designed to help these young companies refine their business plans and improve their pitches to potential investors.”

InterTradeIreland will host a free workshop in Drogheda and Dundalk on the 8th May aimed at helping those who are considering applying for this year’s Seedcorn competition to prepare their entries.

Jennifer McMahon, Principal, Seroba Life Sciences was on the Seedcorn 2018 judging panel and has praised the contribution the competition has made to the business community over the past 16 years: “The Seedcorn programme is an excellent all-Island initiative which helps more emerging entrepreneurs and exciting new innovators to succeed. While prize money is always of benefit to start-up and early-stage companies when striving to reach the next value inflection point, access to the wider InterTradeIreland guidance and investor network is probably the biggest benefit to all finalists. 

“The long list of success stories from Seedcorn alumni is a testament to the valuable contribution of InterTradeIreland in supporting the business community and promoting cross-border trade. Being a judge in this competition is always an enjoyable and rewarding experience as the calibre of companies is amongst the best in Europe.”

The closing date for entries is Friday 31 May at 13:00. 

Dundalk company GECKO Governance is a previous winner of this prestigious competition. They won a cash prize of €50,000 when they were named the Best Early Stage Company Category at the 14th annual InterTradeIreland Seedcorn competition in 2016.