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ELEVATION 100 FAST COMPANIES Publisher Editor Web & Features Editor

Ian Hyland Niamh Mac Sweeney Colin White

03 Head of Design Designer

Keith Dalton Laura Wilkinson

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3 Start-up insight Dublin’s first Commissioner for StartUps, Niamh Bushnell tells Business & Finance why nurturing and activating Dublin’s startup ecosystem is crucial 7 Enterprise engagement For a small island, Ireland packs a punch in the global knowledge economy and has gained much attention for its growing start-up scene, writes Eavann Murphy

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8 A story full of success Niamh Mac Sweeney looks at some of Ireland’s leading entrepreneurs and trail blazers, charting there journey from early stage enterprise to fast growth company



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12 Start-up to grown up Nurturing early stage enterprises as they take their first steps running their own business 14 On the fast track Entrepreneurs will be a leading source of job creation this year as fast growth firms continue to invest in innovation and business expansion, writes Niamh Mac Sweeney

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ELEVATION 100 attracting businesses here, it’s also about attracting individuals.” According to Bushnell, that could be anyone from engineers or investors, to specialists in different sectors. “Of course, the reputation piece is to attract people to Dublin, but it’s also to give start-ups who are coming out of Dublin and going into the world a context. When people hear that you’re a Dublin born and bred company, they are aware of the great things that are happening in the start-up space here, and so it gives them a good introduction and a foot in the door.”


Accelerate together Dublin’s first Commissioner for Start-Ups, Niamh Bushnell tells Niamh Mac Sweeney why nurturing and activating Dublin’s start-up ecosystem is crucial.


n the US, companies less than five years old created 44 million jobs over the last three decades and accounted for all net new jobs created over that period. Scaling that to Ireland’s population for the same period would equate to 630,000 jobs created. This is one of the findings of the Activating Dublin report which was spearheaded by a number of key business stakeholders, including Dublin Chamber of Commerce and Dublin City Council. Given that Dublin was voted the ‘Best City in the World to Start a Business’ (2013), the ecosystem is already very buoyant, but harnessing that further and maximising on this reputation of being a great place to start and grow a business, is an ongoing endeavour.

ENCAPSULATING THE ECOSYSTEM Niamh Bushnell is Dublin’s first Commissioner for Start-Ups, a role that was created as a direct result of the Activating Dublin report. In Bushnell’s role as Commissioner she is responsible for maximising the potential of the tech start-up ecosystem in Dublin, acting as a voice and informing the world that Dublin is a great place to establish a business. “It’s all about going out and telling people why Dublin is an excellent location to start a business,” Bushnell says, “but its more than just

Niamh Bushnell, Commissioner for Start-Ups

GLOBAL REPUTATION Although Ireland’s reputation is highly regarded around the world, the pace of change across business and the extent of globe competition, means it’s a story that needs to be constantly told and invigorated. “We have to keep telling that story for the sake of our companies and to attract new companies and individuals here,” Bushnell points out. “But equally, we have to see what’s missing. Where are the dots not connecting? Where are other people driving forward similar initiatives and how can we work more effectively together?” According to the commissioner, in order to harness the ecosystem to its full potential, we need to be more focused and more purposely connected. “We should pilot some things that aren’t being done today and see if they work. If they make sense for the community, then the community should take them over and run with them,” she says. MENTORING FOR SCALE The commissioner’s office runs a number of initiatives and activities including: 1st Friday Brekkies, a publication called Dublin Globe, the Dublin Data Initiative and the Start-up Community Fund. But according to Bushnell,“We have a lot of serial and highly experienced entrepreneurs, but they don’t spend time with young scaling companies because often they don’t know them. When you go to events in Dublin you will see your peers – other companies that have product, have some early stage revenue or funding or are a super early stage start-up with a concept. But what you generally don’t see are what I call the ‘elder lemons’ of the industry – the guys who have built multi-million dollar companies or who have successfully exited.” While serial entrepreneurs are extremely busy people, Bushnell says they are still interested in connecting with the new generation and the next wave. However, she says, there is no real structure for them to do that in a measured way. Her office July 2015 Business & Finance


is addressing this through its mentoring for scale programme, which she says is: “no-brainer kind of stuff”. “It’s about seeing where the community is – which is very active already – and connecting it more with what it needs,” she adds.

THE NEXT CHALLENGE Bushnell agrees that one of the key challenges for the start-up ‘movement’ is finding suitable office space in the city. This problem will not be solved overnight, but she says her office is focused on addressing this issue also. In 2012, a Start-up Entrepreneur Programme was introduced which enables non-EEA nationals to secure residency status in Ireland when setting up a business here. While this was seen as a very positive move, take-up has been low, and Bushnell believes more needs to be done to promote it so that those figures increase. Clearly, Ireland’s start-up community is vibrant, diverse and determined. There have been many start-ups established here which have gone on to enjoy huge international acclaim. With a strong start-up ecosystem, combined with a strong presence of some of the most innovative multinationals in the world, Dublin is proving to be quite appealing to emerging enterprises, serial entrepreneurs and investors. Now that we have established this reputation, and given that we are viewed internationally as one of the best places in the world to set up a business, retaining it and growing it further will be the next challenge. 

TOP TIPS FOR ENTREPRENEURS Speaking at InspireFest in June, Niamh Bushnell shared lessons from her days as an early stage entrepreneur: 1. Having a perspective from one side of the table, as a mentor and angel investor, doesn’t help you when you become an entrepreneur. The minute I crossed that bridge and lifted that lens I was deaf, dumb and blind all over again. I was emotionally involved again. I fell in love with my product’s features and functionality again and cared less about the actual market. And that’s a very dangerous place to be. Always be market driven. 2. Being busy is not the same as being productive. It’s nice to be known and saluted the minute you walk into a networking event. It’s nice to have a calendar full of coffees. These things can make the lonely entrepreneur feel like they’re accomplishing something, but the chances are you’re not helping your business. I’ve lived in that false economy of busy and it’s another dangerous place to be. 3. Like New York, Dublin’s start-up ecosystem is maturing and you’ve lots of choice in the third-party talent you engage for your company – the legal and accounting firms, PR and marketing folks, mentoring programmes and workshops ... even investors. You may be just a start-up now but you’re going big places and to get there you need to have the confidence to seek out and demand the best support you can get from the ecosystem that surrounds you. 4. There are no shortcuts. No one out there in the world has the answer for you and your business – no mentor or investor, no matter how experienced, can tell you how to get the most bang for your buck on your marketing budget, or where to focus your business development efforts, or what your pricing model should be. It’s your job as an entrepreneur to go through the discovery process in a systematic way and find the light at the end of the tunnel. 5. Tech is challenging. If your product has tech, and you’re not tech, become an expert listener and communicator, quickly. I had a super smart, super patient technical co-founder and we still struggled every day to communicate on product-related matters. In a world where you speak different languages, you discover soon enough that yes can actually mean no, no can mean maybe and maybe can mean product trade-offs you don’t want to make. Every day must be a successful team communication day.




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Business & Finance Media Group and Ireland INC has been recognising excellence in Irish business for over 40 years through the prestigious Business & Finance Irish Business Awards – the longest running and most coveted business awards programme in Ireland. This year, the inaugural Elevation Fast Company Awards 2015 will award Ireland’s most dynamic, innovative and fastest growing companies in sectors such as tech, life sciences, energy, new media and financial services – as chosen by an esteemed judging panel. The 2015 Elevation Fast Company Awards platform will officially open for entries in June, at the launch of the 2015 Elevation Fast 100 digital listing. FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT Chris Simpson t: +353 1 237 7006 m: +353 87 7736 220 e:

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he ease of doing business, an entrepreneur visa programme, the presence of technology multinationals, the growing significance of high-profile global events such as Web Summit and a top talent pool, all combine to create a thriving community for start-ups. A key factor for any early-stage start-up is support, both financial and general business advice. And Ireland’s start-up scene is nothing if not supportive. From incubators, accelerators, competitions and funding programmes, there are numerous options for those who may have a great idea or product, but need help bringing it to fruition. The Government has recognised the importance of the country’s start-up environment, and has set up several funding and support initiatives designed to give that muchneeded boost to those entrepreneurs with a spark. Through Enterprise Ireland, it operates the New Frontiers programme and the Competitive Feasibility Fund which are aimed at those just starting out. For companies at the seed stage of investment, the Competitive Start Fund and the High Potential Start-up Unit (HPSU) are designed to support companies with the potential to succeed in the global market. Incubators play an important role in the early lives of many start-ups. There are 35 business incubators in Ireland, among them is NDRC, which was recently named among the top incubators in the world by UBI Global. As well as providing seed money, these incubator programmes typically offer valuable mentoring, practical workshops, access to talent and access to potential investors. Universities and third-level institutions are a melting pot of talent and ideas, and many technology start-ups will spring to life from a kernel of an idea borne of a meeting of likeminded students or through the acquisition of knowledge. Most of the third-level institutions offer start-up development programmes. The most recent success story is mobile tech company FeedHenry, which was bought for €63.5m by US global software firm Red Hat. FeedHenry was

For a small island, Ireland packs a punch in the global knowledge economy and has gained much attention for its growing startup scene, writes Eavann Murphy.

Eavann Murphy, chief commercial officer, eircom Business Solutions

founded by entrepreneur Cathal McGloin and was spun out of Waterford Institute of Technology. A standout characteristic of Ireland’s start-up scene is the community spirit and the supportive nature of successful Irish entrepreneurs and companies, as well as the large multinationals with bases here. From Google and Microsoft, to Dell and SAP, several large multinationals have created start-up funds, accelerator programmes and start-up competitions all designed to encourage and support entrepreneurs and start-up companies at a very early stage in their development. We at eircom Business Solutions are keen to play our part in the development of Ireland’s start-ups. With over 80,000 SME customers, we have a unique insight into the needs of SMEs, from those early-stage start-ups to more established companies. Through initiatives like eircom Spiders digital workshops, competitions like Digital Boost and accelerator programmes like Lab 353, we are providing advice, support, mentoring and funding to start-ups and small businesses. All of these funds, programmes and competitions combine to create a vital support system for Irish start-ups. And there’s a clear indication that it’s working. In 2014, Irish companies raised €400.8m from investors, a significant increase from the €284.9m raised in 2013, according to IVCA VenturePulse. We’re doing so much right. We need to keep that momentum going and focus on the next stage of the start-up journey, helping these companies to scale and create successful products or services that are exported around the world. As a provider of vital communications infrastructure, we’re proud to have an impactful role in the success of businesses looking to scale nationally and internationally. Not only do we have the products to help start-ups take advantage of technological developments in data communications and mobile, our decades of experience is also a key resource that companies can tap into as they look to the future. n July 2015 Business & Finance




s we move beyond a period of economic instability towards one of growth and investment, entrepreneurs driving indigenous enterprises will be central to Ireland’s continuing recovery. Innovation and creativity are easily identified in some of Ireland’s leading entrepreneurs, and there are many examples of those who provide compelling products, processes and knowledge based-solutions while competing on a global stage and within constantly changing markets. Not only are these inspiring enterprises contributing to the economy, providing innovative products and services and creating employment, but they are also adding to our strong international reputation as a great place to start, grow and export a business from.

SOCIAL STORY When the world’s first social news agency was established, few would have thought it was an Irish-based company, especially given that Storyful was almost an instant global brand. Its founder, Mark Little – an Irish journalist, television presenter and author – took time out from working at RTÉ to pursue a project centred on digital media and global journalism, and in 2010, Storyful was born. Fast-forward three years and Storyful became the Irish entrepreneurial success story of the year when it was sold to Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp for €18m. Since it was acquired, Storyful has grown to almost 90 people, in Dublin, New York, London, Hong Kong, Atlanta and Sydney. In June this year, writing on the Storyful blog, Mark Little announced his decision to leave the company, which he admitted was not an easy decision, but was the correct one. “Storyful was an unlikely story from the beginning,” he said. “I founded the company because I wanted to prove that the eternal values of quality journalism mattered more than ever in the age of social media. And I was determined to prove that the very best journalism is still a great business model.” According to Little, the journey for the early stage enterprise was “exhilarating, exhausting, relentless and sometimes dispiriting”. He added: “When we first pitched our product, I could see the eyes of some potential clients glaze over as they struggled to understand our relevance. So the global success of our company is the sweetest feeling.” While Little says his departure from Storyful is proof of the strength of the company, when Storyful was acquired by News Corp in 2013 8

Business & Finance July 2015


A story full of success Niamh Mac Sweeney looks at some of Ireland’s leading entrepreneurs and trail blazers, charting their journey from early stage enterprise to fast growth company. he remained on to ensure the company’s core values were enhanced rather than undermined. “Acquisitions are notoriously messy affairs (at least for the start-up). But that hasn’t been the case with Storyful and News Corp. We’ve enjoyed absolute and unwavering support for our ambitions from the highest level at News Corp, and also received the resources to achieve them. We acquired the talented Rahul Chopra from News Corp, and, as Storyful’s CEO, he has all the right skills to guide Storyful to a glorious second act.”

Innovation and creativity are easily indentified in some of Ireland’s leading entrepreneurs

IN THE BAG Another prime example of an indigenous media enterprise with huge growth and export potential is Brown Bag Films which was established in 1994 by Cathal Gaffney and Darragh O’Connell. Brown Bag Films produce animated children’s programmes and over the past 15 years, the company has grown from two staff in 1994 to more than 50 employees at its offices in Dublin, the UK and the US. Although Brown Bag are well known here in Ireland, equally 90% of their business is export-based and programmes produced by the animators are watched by millions of children around the world every day. After 21

years in business, Brown Bag’s Dublin-based headquarter continues to produce cutting-edge animation for the international market, bagging numerous awards along the way. The company has worked with some of the world’s biggest entertainment names, including Disney, Nickelodeon, BBC, Chorion, Silvergate Media and Amazon Studios. The company recently partnered with publishing house Scholastic UK to jointly develop publishing and animated content.

When the world’s first social news agency was established, few would have thought it was an Irish company

CODE CRACKERS One entrepreneur who began his journey as a teen was James Whelton, who founded the now infamous CoderDojo at the tender age of 18. Since then, the Cork native has blazed a trail and what started a simple mission to get as many children coding as possible, has today become the CoderDojo movement – a not-forprofit organisation where, through a network of volunteers and kids teaching other kids, there are more than 480 dojos operating in 48 countries worldwide. Within Europe alone, CoderDojo classes reach more than 25,000 students. THE GAMESMASTER An equally ambitious digital entrepreneur is Dylan Collins. He founded DemonWare in 2003, growing it to become the leading online games technology firm in the global console games market. DemonWare was acquired by Activision Blizzard – the world’s biggest video games publisher – in 2007. Not content to retire on the proceeds, the serial entrepreneur founded Jolt Online Gaming, which became one of the pioneering social games publishers in Europe. Jolt was then acquired by GameStop, the largest video games retailer in the world in 2009. Collins is now CEO of SuperAwesome, the number one children’s marketing platform in the US and UK, reaching over 20 million children every month. SuperAwesome works with the biggest children’s entertainment brands in the world including Disney, Hasbro, Warner Bros and Activision. Collins is also an investor and advisor across children’s media and technology companies and is a venture partner with Hoxton Ventures. He also sits on the board of the UK’s top-rated marketing technology agency, Potato. The next generation of digital entrepreneurs need look no further for inspiration than Collins. His drive is unrelenting and he is a shining example of how an Irish established company

James Whelton, CoderDojo

Dylan Collins, serial digital entrepreneur

Brian Conlon, First Derivatives

can start, grow, garner massive global reach, and fairly quickly, sell for millions of dollars.

WAY TO GO Another ambitious entrepreneur in the IT industry is John Purdy, who co-founded Ergo more than 20 years ago. Ergo is one of Ireland’s most successful IT companies, and has transitioned from a firm focusing on the sale of IT commodities to providing software solutions and IT infrastructure services to multinational customers. June 2013 saw Ergo celebrate 20 years in business, and since it was founded, Ergo has grown from three to over 200 employees. Despite the pace of change in this industry, over the last five years, Ergo has accelerated its cloud and managed services offering, carving out an important role in next-generation ICT service delivery. FINTECH FOUNDERS Another astute entrepreneur is Brian Conlon, the founder of First Derivatives – a leading global service provider in the capital markets technology sector with offices in New York, London and Ireland. Since its establishment, First Derivatives has been on a fast growth journey and this year alone the company has been strategic with its investments. Recently, First Derivatives purchased a majority stake in Kx Systems and subsequent investments across the business include three acquisitions in as many months. First Derivatives has positioned itself as a leading player in ‘big fast data’ across multiple vertical markets and there is a sense that there will be a number of key investments from the company that will maximise the growth potential of the business, future-proofing it for a long time to come. Colm Lyons is no stranger to the business community in Ireland. He founded Realex Payments in 2000 and over the last decade has transformed the company into one of Europe’s largest and fastest growing online payment gateways, processing in excess of €28bn per annum on behalf of 12,500 clients. In March this year, Lyons announced that the firm had been acquired by Global Payments, a leading worldwide provider of payment technology services. According to Lyons: “It’s great news for our customers, for our employees, and for Ireland. For Realex Payments’ existing 12,500 merchants, this deal means they can avail of Global Payments’ unmatched international July 2015 Business & Finance


presence, entering new markets and driving their global ecommerce business like never before. And for Realex Payments’ staff, the diversity of opportunity that comes with the deal is enormous.” Global Payments conducts business in 28 countries, with 4,200 employees across the globe. “This is another great news story for Ireland. Going forward, the company will be at the heart of ecommerce for a Fortune 1000 company that services over 1.5 million merchants,” Lyons added.

BREATHING LIFE INTO SCIENCE There is no shortage of life science companies setting up in Ireland, and while global multinationals are the cornerstone of the industry here, indigenous science-based enterprises are preforming strongly and holding their own too. Building a hugely successful pharma company from start-up status 10 years ago, to its recent sale worth $135m, Patsy Carney and Tom Brennan, co-founders of EirGen, have shown their commitment to investing in Ireland, its people and the industry in general. Last year EirGen created 40 new jobs following a €4m investment, and this year the company has been sold to US-based Opko for $135m (€120m). Opko’s CEO, Philip Frost said the main reason they were interested in EirGen was because it is one of the leading developers and suppliers of high-potency niche pharmaceutical products in the world. Co-founder and chief technical officer, Tom Brennan, said: “Official figures show that the life sciences sector is the fastest growing area of Ireland’s export industry. “We hope that our continuing efforts will inspire other high-end technology companies to invest – and re-invest – in the region, providing further opportunities for employment growth while driving forward efforts to secure Ireland’s future as the location-of-choice for worldleading research and manufacturing industries,” he continued. Julie Sinnamon, CEO, Enterprise Ireland said: “EirGen Pharma is a stand-out example of an ambitious, innovation-led Irish company that is achieving strong export-led growth.” FOOD FOR THOUGHT The Irish food and agri sector is worth €24bn to the Irish economy annually and according to PwC, there are approximately a quarter of a million people who contribute their skills, know-how and hard work to drive the success 10

Business & Finance July 2015

Patsy Carney and Tom Brennan, co-founders of EirGen

The life sciences sector is the fastest growing area of Ireland’s export industry

and reputation of Ireland as a place of quality food and agribusiness. With so many food companies, from creative start-ups to established firms performing strongly in both domestic and international markets, it’s impossible to single out just a few companies of note. Irish food and agribusinesses are benefiting from Ireland’s stellar global reputation, and in 2014, exports grew by 4%, representing an expansion of 45% or €3.2bn since 2009. The strongest performing sectors were dairy product and ingredients, which exceeded the €3bn mark (+3%), prepared foods (€1.8bn, +8%) and seafood (€540m, +8%).

CAPTURING GLOBAL MARKETS Aidan Cotter, chief executive, Bord Bia highlighted the significant shift in the destinations for Irish exports, with international markets showing renewed growth, reflected in a 15% increase in trade to stand at €3bn, or 29% of total food and drink exports. “The industry’s drive to broaden export reach to destinations outside of the EU is paying dividends, with growth in emerging and international markets now driving export figures, offsetting the limited growth in our established premium EU markets,” he said. There are many examples of inspiring startups that have grown and succeeded in capturing global markets. As a place to start, grow and export from, Ireland has many positives. Maximising on these further will impact positively on the enterprise community and will bolster our international reputation as a great place to start, grow and export a business from. n

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From start-up to growing up Across Ireland there are numerous accelerator hubs that nurture early stage enterprises as they take their first tentative steps running their own businesses.


iti, the global bank, along with the Minister of State at the Department of Finance, Simon Harris, Dublin Start-up Commissioner Niamh Bushnell and the IDA officially opened the Citi Accelerator Hub in June. Based at Citi, the hub will provide office space for fintech start-ups to work from. Equipped with wi-fi, video conferencing and additional office facilities, fintech start-ups will also have access to Citi’s mentoring network, which will be on hand to advise and support them with their business, as well as organising industry meet-ups to help strengthen their network further in the fintech sector. Citi’s chief administrative officer and head of the Citi Service Centre, Cecilia Ronan said: “Citi has been an avid supporter of the fintech sector since opening the first Citi Innovation Lab in 2009. We now employ 400 technologists out of a total workforce of 2,500. We believe that there is a huge opportunity for early innovators and emerging start-ups here in Ireland to create disruptive technology that will help map the future of financial services.” One of the biggest challenges fintech startups face in Ireland is their ability to secure city centre office space. “Citi currently partners with programmes such as LaunchBox, upStart and Stemettes, and, having worked closely with these teams over the last number of months, we saw an opportunity to extend our support of this sector by refurbishing an existing office space in our North Wall Quay building to accommodate startups that need access to a state-of-the-art office space to work out of,” Cecilia Ronan explained.


Business & Finance July 2015

“The Citi Accelerator Hub will also give these startups access to Citi mentors who will be on hand to guide and support them as they navigate their way through setting up a new business,” she added. Minister of State, Simon Harris TD, said: “Ireland has one of the most dynamic fintech sectors around, but with that comes challenges. Organisations such as Citi stepping up to the mark and opening their doors to support these start-ups is crucially important, not just in providing the office space for them to work out of, but by also providing them with access to the Citi mentor network,” he explained. “We must nurture the talented young innovators we have in this country who are making an important contribution to our thriving financial services sector. Citi has led the way in supporting the development of the fintech industry in Ireland,” the minister added.

BIG AMBITIONS Dublin start-up commissioner, Niamh Bushnell, said: “It’s exciting to see another collaborative workspace open up in Dublin city centre and welcome the start-up community in. Particularly at Citi, where the team is offering not only strong wi-fi and coffee, but also their knowledge and time in mentoring start-ups based on their broad range of in-house expertise. I’d recommend the new Citi Accelerator Hub to all fintech start-ups with big ambitions – and we’ve no shortage of those in Dublin.” Martin Shanahan, CEO at IDA Ireland, added: “Fintech is an area that we are focusing on here at IDA Ireland. We believe Ireland can become a world centre for this industry. Citi, a company with a truly global network, is offering a great opportunity to help foster those early stage firms in this space.” For more information on how to access the Citi Accelerator Hub: w: 


A big challenge fintech startups face is their ability to secure city centre office space

Accelerator programmes NDRC LaunchPad: DCU Propeller: propeller-venture-accelerator Health XL: Startupbootcamp: DogPatch Labs: Scalefront: NDRC VentureLab: Business incubation spaces Enterprise Ireland has a list of all the campus incubation spaces in Ireland, including University and Institute of Technology incubation centres:

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On the fast track Entrepreneurs will be a leading source of job creation this year as fast growth firms continue to invest in innovation and business expansion, writes Niamh Mac Sweeney.


ntrepreneurs are leading global job creation, with 47% of entrepreneurs expecting to increase their total global workforce this year. This is according to the EY Global Job Creation and Youth Entrepreneurship Survey 2015; a study into the impact entrepreneurship has on the global jobs market. The survey also asked 2,807 young people about their entrepreneurial ambitions and found that more than half of young people (65%) want to be entrepreneurs at some point in their careers. “The global economy is on the road to sustained recovery, but growth is slow,” Mark Weinberger, global chairman and CEO of EY, says. “One often missed opportunity to fuel growth is empowering and supporting entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs continue to defy global trends in their levels of economic confidence and plans for workforce expansion, and this survey clearly shows that. Governments and business should


Business & Finance July 2015

work together with entrepreneurs to create the right ecosystems for success.” The survey also reveals entrepreneurs positive sentiment toward the economy, with 71% reporting confidence in the economic direction of their domestic market and 66% confident in the economic direction of the global economy. Despite rising confidence, entrepreneurs are mindful of the risks, citing negative market conditions as the top perceived business threat (31%), suggesting that global instability is still on the radar of the world’s businesses.

WORLDWIDE PERSPECTIVE Entrepreneurs are increasingly looking abroad to expand their workforces, with 47% expecting to do so in the next year. Maria Pinelli, EY’s global vice chair of strategic growth markets explains: “Entrepreneurs have always been pioneers looking for new

opportunities, pushing the boundaries of what is possible and helping the global economy work better through their innovations and drive. Today’s marketplace is a global one, and creates huge opportunities for entrepreneurs with the right ideas, the right support and the determination to grow.”

SEEDS OF SUCCESS In 2014, Enterprise Ireland client companies created 19,705 new jobs. According to the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton, two-thirds of all new jobs in the Irish economy are created by start-ups in their first five years of existence. “That is why we have developed a range of new supports for entrepreneurs and start-ups as part of our jobs plan,” he explains. Enterprise Ireland announced in June a further €65m is being made available for co-investment in seed funds, and issued an open competitive call to fund managers to signal their interest in establishing funds. Start-ups that are supported now will underpin increased job creation in the future, and according to Enterprise Ireland, a functioning and competitive venture capital market is essential to companies if they are to start and scale successfully. Enterprise Ireland CEO, Julie Sinnamon explains: “The existing seed funds have been hugely effective in increasing the amount of funding available to our start-ups and have helped create a vibrant and dynamic portfolio of high growth companies. Through the existing seed funds, which are in receipt of considerable investment from the Irish banking sector, we have seen significant investment in high potential startups. The next generation of seed funds targeted for establishment under this initiative will create a new platform to support commercialisation of ideas, company establishment and most importantly, job creation. FOCUSED INITIATIVES In Ireland, there are numerous supports, funding and grants available to all businesses, be they start-up, high growth or exporting. And Irish SMEs have done remarkably well in accessing international funding too. So far, Ireland’s researchers and companies have been successful in winning €97m of funding in the first nine months of Horizon 2020 – the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. Performing well in areas such as ICT and research fellowships, Ireland’s researchers have been awarded over €24m and €13m respectively. Ireland has also been very successful in the

agri-food (€11m) and health (€10m) areas. Equally, Ireland’s success in competing for European Research Council (ERC) grants under Horizon 2020 has significantly exceeded our performance in previous programmes, with funding to ERC grantees in Horizon 2020 reaching over €19m so far. Sinnamon said these results from the EU Commission show that Irish SMEs continue to shine in Europe. “We are particularly interested to see our high potential start-ups and established companies with disruptive technologies reaping the rewards of the new SME-focused programmes. These programmes offer new and different opportunities to those in previous framework programmes, and are at a scale suited to real impact on company development.”

The inaugural eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards 2015 now begins the search for Ireland’s most dynamic, innovative and fastest growing companies

TALENT SHOWCASE Given our vibrant start-up ecosystem and our smart, innovative and visionary entrepreneurs who are driving significant businesses both domestically and across global markets, it is important to acknowledge and recognise their endeavours and achievements. The inaugural eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards 2015 now begins the search for Ireland’s most dynamic, innovative and fastest growing companies – in sectors such as tech, life sciences, energy, new media and financial services – across the island of Ireland. The Awards will recognise the success and ingenuity of the fastest growing businesses across Ireland and the unique drivers behind them. With a spotlight on innovation, international scalability, differentiation and strategic investment to the Irish economy, the eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards celebrate the success of Ireland’s fastest growing companies. The Awards are now open for entries following the official launch of the Awards which will take place on November 17th at The Marker Hotel Dublin. CEO of Business & Finance, Ian Hyland said the Awards programme is important in highlighting the achievements of Irish companies. “The eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards is indicative of Ireland’s position as an innovation nation and this Awards programme plays a critical role in showcasing creative and competitive enterprises across the island of Ireland.” The eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards categories include: Emerging Fast Company; Social Entrepreneurship; Health and Life Sciences; FMCG; Technology; Manufacturing; Services Industry, and Grand Prix. To enter, visit: w: n July 2015 Business & Finance


EIRCOM SPIDERS 2015 CALL FOR SPONSORSHIP The eircom Spider Awards are the most prestigious digital technology awards in Ireland, recognising the most innovative trailblazers in Ireland's digital business community. Celebrating its 20th Year, the awards will be held on Thursday, October 29th at The DoubleTree by Hilton, Burlington Road. There are 20 categories up for nomination including four new categories: Best Acquisition Campaign, Best Customer Service and Retention Campaign, Best Use of Mobile Technology & Best Digital Start Up. For those companies at the cutting edge of digital technology, and for anyone seeking to develop business within this powerful and fast moving marketplace, sponsorship of the eircom Spider Awards is an excellent opportunity to market your brand.



eRetail eEducation Irish Language News, Publishing and Entertainment Listings and Classifieds Travel, Sport, Leisure and Tourism

Acquisition Campaign Data and Web Analytics Creative Technology in Digital Marketing 01 237 7012

SPECIAL AWARDS Digital Start-Up Agency of the Year (less than 10 employees) Agency of the Year (over 10 employees)

ELEVATION 100 3D4MEDICAL Sector: Medical CEO: John Moore

ACTION POINT TECHNOLOGY GROUP Sector: Tech Managing director: David Jeffreys

3D4Medical is an awardwinning technology company that specialises in the development of medical, educational and health and fitness apps for professional reference as well as student and patient education. Its apps are expertly designed to encourage unique learning experiences through intuitive interactivity and stunning visualisations. 3D4Medical’s latest apps have revolutionised the teaching and learning of anatomy, physiology and exercise, enabling users to effortlessly navigate via 360° views of the human body. To date, 3D4Medical has enjoyed success with over 8.5 million app downloads worldwide and multiple appearances of its apps in iPad commercials. In addition to developing cutting edge apps, 3D4Medical also specialises in high-quality 3D medical stock image production and animations with images featuring in Time, Newsweek and The Scientist. Along with its ability to create custom images and animations for clients, 3D4Medical also offer customers an impressive selection of over 40,000 high-resolution images from its database.

Founded as a software development company providing services nationally and internationally, Action Point has delivered solutions to clients such as Fox Networks, where it developed a teleprompting system which is used to prompt shows such as MTV Music Awards, American Idol, The Academy Awards and many more. Action Point also developed the debt collection system for the M50 eFlow barrier-free tolling system which supports millions of euro worth of transactions on Ireland’s busiest stretch of motorway.

AGILE NETWORKS Sector: ICT Managing director: Darragh Richardson

Agile Networks designs, builds and supports IT networks for many of Ireland’s leading public and private sector companies offering a full life-cycle of network integration services – design, build, operate, and support of customer networks.

With its operational model and technical expertise around complex networking, Agile Networks supports 60 of the bestknown companies in Ireland across more than 1,200 sites, with over 1.2 million people using networks supported by Agile Networks.

AMATECH Sector: Tech CEO and founder: Dr David Finn


Agricultural Magnetics is an Irish company that is in the process of introducing an innovative patented technology called MagGrow into the agricultural industry. The technology is based around the premise of fitting a system of magnetic inserts into various types of spraying apparatus, which impart a magnetic charge into the sprayed chemical. All living things have a magnetic attraction and so the magnetised chemical is attracted to the entire surface of the plant. Laboratory and field trials have demonstrated that our Agricultural Magnetics’ system can achieve attraction rates of 85 to 95%, which enables growers to reduce the application of crop protection chemicals by 65 to 75%. More importantly, it has been proven to increase crop yields by 20 to 40%.

AmaTech was founded in 2007 by David Finn with engineers that had experience in radio frequency identification device (RFID) development and production. Many of these engineers were part of the development team that has designed the first machines using embedding technology. The company is organised into two divisions: machine engineering located in Füssen, Germany and inlay manufacturing at a secure facility in Galway. AmaTech brings more than 20 years of experience automating the production of contactless and dual interface financial payment cards and secure credentials.

AMELIO UTILITIES Sector: Engineering Managing director: Catherine O’Neill Catherine O’Neill founded Amelio whilst studying at Queen’s University, Belfast. Amelio Utilities is an engineering firm with particular emphasis on drainage and civil engineering. Amelio focuses on utilising the most advanced and innovative technology and equipment available. The company currently has July 2015 Business & Finance


ELEVATION 100 offices in Belfast, Dublin and Gloucester, UK. Amelio Utilities aims to increase its market share of the civil engineering and drainage industry throughout Ireland and the UK over the coming years. Services provided include: civil engineering projects; CCTV pipeline inspection surveys; sewer cleansing services; drain repair services; and utility mapping.

ASPIRACON Sector: Business management Managing director: Pat Lucey

acids. The formulation is 100% natural, and proven to be completely safe. Its products are ideal substitutes for synthetic and other harmful chemicals.

AVENTAMED Asystec is a data management solution provider based in Ireland. The company’s primary focus is to design solutions to assist companies to manage, secure and identify their key data assets within their organisation. Asystec provides independent solutions from a number of market leading vendors, choosing the most appropriate technologies for its customers. It also acts as a single source for customers by providing them with endto-end solutions.

AURANTA AspiraCon is an Irish company with the mission ‘to take the chaos out of project management’. With a track record of managing major projects worldwide, AspiraCon delivers business management services and consultancy to clients while aiming to simplify complex business management systems and streamline process workflows. With software deployed in Europe, USA, Middle East, Africa, India and Japan, AspiraCon specialises in robust solution architecture and design, all built for scalability and performance.

ASYSTEC Sector: Data management Founders: Les Byrne and Brendan McPhillips 18

Business & Finance July 2015

Sector: Pharma Managing director: John Cullen

Enhancing yield and reducing food waste, Auranta and its derivative products are natural broad-spectrum antimicrobial products that can complement and/or replace synthetic chemicals currently used in the food industry. Auranta is derived from natural plant extracts combined with a variety of natural food grade organic

Sector: Medical CEO: Olive O’Driscoll

AventaMed is a start-up medical device company focused on improving patient care and reducing healthcare costs. The company is a spin-out from the MEDIC research centre within the Cork Institute of Technology and has been founded upon technology developed from four years of product development. The company’s vision is to simplify surgical procedures through novel custom designed medical devices. AventaMed’s first product is a novel ear, nose and throat (ENT) device for the placement of tympanostomy tubes (grommets). This device will place a grommet in under one second and will allow the procedure to be carried out in a clinic without the need for traditional general anaesthetic.

BIOPLASTECH Sector: Life sciences Founder: Dr Kevin O’Connor Bioplastech is focused on the development of

green technologies, which offer alternatives for petrochemical polymers and their derivatives. Bioplastech is a University College Dublin (UCD) spinout company, founded in 2009. The Bioplastech team is a multidisciplinary mixture of technical and business specialists who share the same passion for production and commercialisation of environmentally friendly products. Dr Kevin O’Connor is a company founder, director, and scientific officer. Since 1999, he has worked at UCD as a senior lecturer in the area of microbiology and biotechnology. Enrico Alteri is also a Bioplastech founder and director and acts as business development manager.

BIZIMPLY Sector: ICT Founder: Gerard Forde

Bizimply offers simple but powerful workforce management software that improves productivity and business costs for any business. The software is useful for businesses with more than one location as it allows managers to schedule, set targets for each location and swap staff between them. As you schedule, Bizimply takes into account Sunday, holiday and overtime rates

ELEVATION 100 along with local labour taxes to give managers an accurate prediction of labour costs. The system allows the schedule to be sent straight to staff members’ smartphone and the schedule forecasting feature gives real-time notifications about payroll and labour targets.

BLUEFACE Sector: Tech CEO: Alan Foy Blueface is a high growth, innovative and dynamic IP telephony services company which is headquartered in Ireland with operations in Ireland, the UK and Italy. With landline and mobile operations, Blueface has leveraged its customised IP platform to deliver products and services to businesses, SMEs and professional consumers. Blueface was originally established in 2005 and has perfected its IP technology platform, which has been deployed successfully in over 12 countries worldwide. Blueface’s vision is to become the leading provider of converged IP telephony services to SME’s across Europe.

BRANDTONE Sector: Marketing CEO: Donald Fitzmaurice

Brandtone’s mobile specialists and experienced brand marketers have created a new element for the marketing mix. The company’s local teams work to create efficient mobile solutions that are fully integrated into clients’ campaign planning. Brandtone create large databases of permissioned brand shoppers to allow engagement with consumers via their mobiles to achieve brand objectives. Brandtone aims to close the loop between brand and consumer, between communications and purchase and through the reach and intimacy of the mobile phone – all with a clear, measurable return on marketing investment.

BRITE:BILL Sector: ICT Co-founders: Alan Coleman and Jim Hannon Brite:Bill transforms the way service providers present and manage billing communications. Cold notifications and demands for payment are transformed into customer centric and engaging communications. With the Brite:Bill platform, service providers can improve customer interactions by preempting questions, tackling issues and highlighting appropriate and new services through personalised, targeted messages and persuasive content. Business customers get the insights they need through tailored analytics and customisable dashboards to easily understand costs and service usage through graphs, tables and alerts.

Brite:Bill is used by tier one telecom operators around the globe. Founded in 2010, the company is headquartered in Dublin and has offices in London, Madrid, Toronto, Shanghai and San Francisco.

BROADLAKE Sector: Investment CEO: Pete Smyth

Broadlake invests in established, fast-growing, Irish services business looking to leverage a strong market position in the UK and Ireland to grow internationally. Partnering with an experienced management team, Broadlake can help support a company’s expansion into Europe and the US through a combination of organic growth and acquisition.

CATHX OCEAN Sector: Tech CEO: Adrian Boyle

regarded by navy and police forces, subsea construction and oceanographic research divers worldwide. Its mission is to work closely with customers on new innovations and applications to deliver measurable change in subsea operations. The company’s previous experience in the application of imaging and laser technology in other industries has helped Cathx Ocean to change how subsea imaging and measurement is performed today. In 2012, the Cathx LED lighting range for subsea vehicles was introduced to the market. Following the success of these lighting products and recognising the need for improvements in subsea imaging and measurement, Cathx Ocean began designing a subsea machine vision camera and laser system. Successful trials of this system were completed in the North Sea in 2014. The company was founded in 2009 by Adrian Boyle and Michael Flynn, and currently employs 23 people at its design and manufacturing facility based in Kildare, with additional office locations in Aberdeen, UK and Boston, USA.

CHIPRIGHT Sector: Tech Director: Kevin Keane

Cathx Ocean first entered the subsea market with its range of professional dive lights which are highly July 2015 Business & Finance





HOW ALIVE ARE YOU? Official fuel economy figures for the XF Range (l/100km): Urban 6.0 – 16.9; Extra Urban 4.6 – 7.9; Combined 5.1 – 11.3. CO2 emissions 135 – 268g/km. Image for illustration purposes only. Price quoted is for XF 2.2 D SE model and excludes delivery and related charges.

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ELEVATION 100 Chipright is a leading provider of internationally traded design services in the fields of micro-electronic design and development. The company was inaugurated in 2005 and developed relationships with several multinational companies in Europe with a vision to supply value added silicon services. In the early years of the company the focus was on integrated circuit verification activity as this was and still is a problematic requirement for many companies.

CLEVERBUG Sector: Tech CEO: Kealan Lennon Founded by well-known Irish entrepreneur, Kealan Lennon, Cleverbug employs a team of 25 in Ireland and five in Silicon Valley. Cleverbug is a technology business, which has solved a major problem for the gifting industry – understanding purchase intent on the one side, and what the recipient would like on the other. The company has built a social graph of closest friends and family for 450 million people around the world. Coining the term ‘gifting graph’ Cleverbug uses its technology and data to drive purchase intent for important personal occasions. While there is immense commercial competition around the obvious, publicly known gifting dates, the gifting market for birthdays and anniversaries is larger than Christmas, Mother’s Day, and Valentines Day combined. Cleverbug has raised $6m in funding led by Delta

Partners and a number of angel investors.

CLIMOTE Sector: Tech Managing director: Eamon Conway

as validation of our wider utility partnership strategy that focuses on partnering with utility companies to bring our technology to their customers.”

COINDRUM Sector: Financial CEO: Lukas Decker

climote is a revolution in heating control. It simply replaces an existing heating time clock, yet allows complete control of home heating, at any time, and from anywhere. Using the climote cloud on the internet from home, work or abroad, customers can manage their home heating remotely. In 2014, climote announced a partnership with ScottishPower, winning a global tender that will enable the utility giant to offer their 5.6 million UK customers a simple and effective way to control their heating remotely. Later that year, Eamon Conway, managing director of climote announced that both John Mullins and Ian Marchant, ex-CEOs of Bord Gáis and SSE respectively, were investing in the company. Speaking at the time, Conway said: “Following on from our recent ScottishPower announcement, we are extremely pleased to welcome both Ian Marchant and John Mullins on to climote’s advisory board. Both are renowned in the energy space and their acknowledgment and investment in the company is a hallmark for the product itself, as well

Coindrum provides selfservice machines in airports that passengers can use to convert unwanted coins into airport shopping vouchers Coindrum offers a unique convenience service for airline travellers as the Coindrum machine can turn coins into a voucher that allows shoppers to buy anything in the participating airport shops. Coindrum is a free service. CEO Lukas Decker is a passionate entrepreneur with a vastly international background having worked in varies sectors including, financial control, consulting and public relations.

CONTINUUM Sector: Tech Managing director: Colin Meagle

Continuum is a full service digital media agency based in Dublin, Ireland. The company works with some of Ireland’s biggest brands to connect with their customers by creating and delivering innovative digital communications and technology with scientific precision. Continuum’s in-house team create interactive digital experiences for web and mobile platforms, using agile development and design processes to turn ideas into superb online experiences. Leading brands such as Tesco Mobile, Prepay Power and CPA Ireland trust Continuum to help them provide their customers with rich digital products using the right blend of scientific strategy, creative, and technology. Engaging websites are created through the company’s design process of research, concept development, delivery and quality assurance.

CREME GLOBAL Sector: Tech CEO and director: Cronan McNamara With over 14 years of experience developing cloud-based software in the area of predictive intake modelling, Crème Global has gathered unique data sets on consumer habits, practices, consumption and chemical occurrence from all over the world. These data sets have been installed and validated in the company’s regulatory accepted and employed models. Crème Global’s experts in mathematical modelling, July 2015 Business & Finance


ELEVATION 100 statistics, software development, food science and nutrition develop and deploy software models for consumer intake modelling, product safety assessment, regulatory affairs and innovation projects. The company believes that when decision makers have access to the right data, better decisions are made, based on real data and expert models.

CUPPRINT Sector: Manufacturing Founder: Terry Fox CupPrint is one of the leading producers of paper cups in Europe. The Irish company has revolutionised the market for personalised to-go and promotional cups by introducing a production process that is as unique as it is closely guarded, using paper and ink that are certified food safe and fully compostable basic materials.

CURRENCYFAIR Sector: Financial Co-founders: Brett Meyers, Sean Barrett and Jonathan Potter

CurrencyFair was created to give individuals and businesses access to the same exchange rates for international currency transfers normally reserved only for banks and market 24

Business & Finance July 2015

professionals dealing in millions. Three ex-bankers (Brett Meyers, Sean Barrett and Jonathan Potter) with the knowledge, the experience, and the network to come up with a better system combined to set up CurrencyFair. “The best advances in technology make the world a smaller place and the services provided by CurrencyFair will help people all over the world to transfer money cheaply,” once noted An Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD when speaking about CurrencyFair.

DATAHUG Sector: Tech Co-founders: Connor Murphy and Ray Smith Datahug was founded in 2010 with the goal of breaking down barriers within businesses in order to better share and leverage business relationships. Launched at The Summit, Europe’s largest tech conference, Datahug won the Spark of Genius award for a networking tool based on email data. In the years since, the company made strides applying cutting-edge data science to the art of sales. Now with offices in San Francisco and Dublin, Datahug arms the world’s sales teams with the power of their own data. Datahug’s mission from the start has been to help sales teams focus on their most important job: building trust with customers and the key to this is data.



Sector: ICT CEO: Ciaran Connell

Sector: Financial CEO: Jon Bayle

DecaWave is an Irish semiconductor company that develops integrated circuits for indoor location and communication based on its ultra-wideband wireless technology platform. Its ScenSor family of parts for the first time gives developers the ability to locate indoor tagged objects to a precision of 10cm at a distance of up to 300m in Line-of-Sight mode and 40m in NonLine-of-Sight mode. DecaWave’s technology allows both accurate measurement of time and data communications to occur simultaneously, enabling applications across a wide range of vertical markets. DecaWave is headquartered in Dublin, Ireland with offices in France, China, and South Korea. DecaWave has raised about €4m in its latest funding round, bringing the total raised by the firm to €26m since 2007. This finance will be used to accelerate its R&D programme for a next generation of location chips that are being targeted at the consumer sector.

Deposify is a deposit management service for landlords and tenants. Paying and holding rental deposits and resolving deposit-related disputes causes problems for landlords, tenants and letting agents. Deposify allows landlords and tenants to manage and control how and when deposits are paid in a safe way. Deposify was co-founded by entrepreneur Jon Bayle and Tracy Keogh.

DIGIT GAME STUDIOS Sector: Tech Founder and CEO: Richard Barnwell

Founded in 2012, DIGIT is a cross-platform game developer based in Dublin, Ireland. The company is the largest game developer in the country with an international team of

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ELEVATION 100 experienced and passionate game-makers. Its first game, Kings of the Realm, was launched in September 2014 and is available on browser, iOS, Android and Windows. The exceptionally talented, international team at DIGIT boasts an enviable collective experience, having worked on some of the world’s most successful franchises in browser, console, MMO, mobile and social games. Gathered from all around the globe, the group of designers, developers, artists and engineers already includes over seven different nationalities, adding character to the ever-evolving DIGIT cultural mix.

anywhere in the world. The leading mobile top-up provider has recently acquired iSend, the largest international top-up network in the US. The deal was part-funded by AIB Corporate Banking and doubles the size of Ding’s business globally and sees significant expansion of its retail distribution network across the Americas. Building on its already remarkable reach of 500,000 outlets globally, iSend brings an additional 150,000 retail stores, mainly in North America.

“I started the company as I was passionate about running high quality trips which focused on my guest’s safety, fun and experiences. I wanted to start a professional company with itineraries, destinations and a service that amazed clients. Happy clients always put a smile on my face and are the corner stone of our business. I am also passionate about providing sustainable employment to good people and local suppliers in this industry,” said McManus.



Sector: Entertainment Founder: James McManus

DING Sector: ICT CEO: Mark Roden

With a belief that mobile phones can change peoples’ lives, Mark Roden established ding to enable people from emerging markets working abroad to instantly transfer small values of airtime to friends’ and family’s mobile phones back home. The inspiration for ding came in 2005 when Mark Roden embarked on developing a technology to enable the instant delivery of airtime to mobile phones

Earth’s Edge is an Irish licensed adventure travel company. The company is a family-run Irish business passionate about delivering a high quality product with a strong emphasis on safety, fun and professionalism. The company philosophy of ‘explore, experience, evolve’ epitomises its ultimate goal to provide a life-changing experience for guests in a safe and fun environment. The company was set up in 2007 by Tipperary native James McManus. With the help of his wife Rosie, the company grew from concept to inception.

Sector: Education CEO: Adrian Harvey Elephants Don’t Forget provides a unique, intelligent and engaging application that reinforces training and embeds knowledge, increasing employee capability and competency. Through continuous assessment and measurement, it provides you with precise insight, enabling you to save money and drive future business performance. Elephants Don’t Forget was set up to fill an important gap and the directors have worked across sales, finance, HR, commercial, operations and marketing disciplines and share the common concern that the training retention of employees needs to be improved. The company has worked at board director level with, and for, a range of companies from multinationals right down to SMEs.

EMBO MEDICAL Sector: Medical CEO: Wayne Allen

Embo Medical was founded in December 2012 by Wayne Allen, Colin Forde and Liam Mullins. The founders were members of the inaugural BioInnovate Ireland Fellowship (2011), a specialist medical device innovation programme where teams spend three months in hospitals observing surgical procedures and healthcare professionals in a clinical setting. The three men witnessed a number of minimally invasive surgical procedures where physicians used metallic coils to shut down blood flow in diseased blood vessels and organs (embolisation). Current embolisation devices are far from optimal and so Embo Medical developed the Caterpillar, which is a unique technology intended to be the first true oneshot peripheral vascular embolisation device. Embo Medical’s objective is to bring the Caterpillar product suite to market and prove its clinical and commercial advantages. The company also aims to give value by creating products that patients need and clinicians will use. July 2015 Business & Finance


ELEVATION 100 personnel and management that support them – FieldAware is focused on providing field service organisations, both large and small.

EQUILUME Sector: Equine Chief Scientific Officer and founder: Barbara Anne Murphy


Equilume is a world leader in the research and development of light therapy solutions to assist the global horse industry in maximising reproductive efficiency and performance. Headquartered in Co. Kildare, at the heart of the Irish horse industry, Equilume was established in 2012 as a result of pioneering research by company founder Dr Barbara Anne Murphy, whose academic research at University College Dublin identified the optimum light level required to advance the breeding season in horses. The Equilume Light Mask is an innovative new method of providing artificial light to horses. The automated device provides the optimum level of blue light to a single eye to successfully advance the breeding season, which helps to prevent prolonged gestations and allows natural behaviour for healthier horses.

EVB Sport was founded by Yvonne Brady in 2010. After graduating from Trinity College Dublin, she set up her own consultancy practice and worked on some of the leading structural projects in the country. However, in 2010 soon after the birth of her third child, she completed the Dublin City Marathon, and it was during the training for this event she realised that the deep core muscles, having gone through the trauma of childbirth, required extra support. Realising that there was nothing suitable on the market, EVB was formed. EVB’s Compression Sport Shorts are revolutionary compression shorts specifically designed to address the changing needs of every woman after giving birth. The company is currently working with a team of world-class designers and manufactures who have a track record of producing premium sports apparel for leading sports brands, as well as collaborating with the top physiotherapists and universities in Ireland.



Sector: Manufacturing Managing director: Yvonne Brady

Sector: ICT Managing director: Paul Casey


Business & Finance July 2015

Exigent Networks was founded to offer network design, implementation and network management service to Ireland’s corporate and government sectors. Paul Casey, Cillian McCarthy and Rob Norton created Exigent Networks to address a need in the Irish network integration market. Exigent Networks delivers high-quality design and maintenance services spanning microwave wireless, LAN, WAN and business IP telephony solutions to high-profile clients across Ireland. The company monitors industry developments, and invests heavily in research and training to ensure its clients get the best possible service and performance.

FIELDAWARE Sector: ICT CEO: Charles Jackson FieldAware’s made-formobile, cloud-based software was designed from the ground up to provide ease of use with incredible flexibility. The software was developed as a mobile platform, with no incumbent legacy software, features or functions. Based on the founders’ intimate knowledge of the unique needs of engineers and technicians in the field – and the operational

Sector: Financial CEO: Brian Conlon

First Derivatives is a leading provider of products and consulting services to the capital markets industry. Focused on financial institutions that work cross-asset, often with multi-system and/ or high volume trading activities, the company scopes, designs, develops, implements and supports a broad range of mission critical data and trading systems across front, middle and back-office operations. Incorporated in 1996, First Derivatives has served the capital markets industry since its incorporation. The company continues to work closely with leading global financial institutions to enable client proprietary and third-party systems cope with the demands of high volume, complex trading in an increasingly regulated market. First Derivatives is a publicly held company, trading on the London Stock Exchange and Irish Stock Exchange. The company is headquartered

ELEVATION 100 in Newry, Northern Ireland from where it has established its research and development centre, its Capital Markets Competency Centre and its near-shore support facilities. The company has continued to expand its service offering and now has operational bases in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia which service its global client base and now employs over 1,000 employees worldwide.

FLAVOUR OF ITALY Sector: Food and beverage Founder: Maurizio Mastrangelo

The Flavour of Italy Group was founded in 2005 by two Italian entrepreneurs – Maurizio Mastrangelo and Marco Giannantonio – and since then it has been operating by combining tradition and innovation. The Flavour of Italy Group operates in Dublin and in Italy and has two head offices. The Irish arm of the business includes, the Italian School of Cooking, Flavour of Italy Catering, Pinocchio Italian Restaurant and Wine Bar, Flavour of Italy Cash and Carry and the operations in Italy, in Campobasso houses the administrative offices and the travel agency Flavour of Italy Travel.

GETBULB Sector: ICT Founder: Oliver Mooney

GetBulb is a Dublin-based venture that has come up with a data visualisation tool to allow people to create infographics to communicate their data more meaningfully. With the growing popularity of infographics, GetBulb is on a mission to make data visualisation more compelling via its tool – a HTML5 app that can be downloaded for any modern desktop web browser. Oliver Mooney founded GetBulb in 2011 and has since taken part in the Startupbootcamp, a start-up accelerator in Dublin, as well as winning The Irish Times Digital Challenge last year.

and a vision to build a great company, one that changes the market with our innovative technology, while at the same time delivering exceptional stock plan services. Today Global Shares is a market-leading provider of highly innovative web-based software for equity administration and financial reporting in the global employee share plan arena. The company has offices in New York, California, London and Ireland, working with large and small, private and public companies with participants in more than 100 countries worldwide. Global Shares’ aim is to be the leading provider of equity administration and compensation management solutions through the delivery of software and services to its corporate clients and their employees.

GROUPLEADER.COM Sector: Tech Founder: Bob Haugh

GLOBAL SHARES Sector: ICT CEO: Tim Houstoun

Global Shares was founded in 2005 with a passion for equity administration is an Irish company based in Dublin co-founded by Bob Haugh, the founder and owner of successful travel businesses Travel Department, ClickandGo. com and comparethefare. ie and Fergal O’Brien, who has worked extensively in the media, marketing

and technology industries around the world. serves the group travel market by providing a one-stop shop for group travel organisers to find and book great travel experiences for their groups online, focusing on group travel partners such as hotels, ground transport and guides. The company is situated in Dublin’s digital docklands, where it has local exposure to a valuable creative and technical ecosystem.

H2 COMPLIANCE Sector: Life sciences CEO: Grant Kinsman H2 Compliance provides chemical and environmental regulatory sustainability services that support company compliance, market access and competitive advantage goals in the market place. H2 Compliance has offices in Ireland (Cork and Dublin) and the USA (New York) and a network of partners and associates in the USA, Europe, China and Canada. The company has been actively involved in the development of the European regulatory process first-hand; both politically and technically, and have actively participated in many senior committees and working groups. H2 Compliance utilises state-of-the-art email encryption technology, secure information technology firewalls and laptop anti-theft tracking software to safeguard data in transit, in storage and on the move. July 2015 Business & Finance


ELEVATION 100 HEYSTAKS TECHNOLOGIES Sector: Tech CEO and founder: Dr Maurice Coyle Founded in 2010, HeyStaks is a leader in next generation search and discovery technologies that are designed to harness the wisdom of the crowd to make information retrieval both collaborative and productive. Implementation of HeyStaks’ products fosters innovation across organisations and converts casual unique visitors into loyal customers across the consumer web. The HeyStaks platform is the product of more than 30 years of cutting-edge research in University College Dublin, The Clarity Centre for Sensor Web Technologies and Science Foundation Ireland. HeyStaks has patented algorithms in areas of collaborative search, social discovery, reputation modelling, community modelling and meta techniques to calculate relevance.

and Wellbeing in 2008. The centre provided 25 classes per week in various natural health modalities, as well as a broad range of natural therapies. In 2010, Hogan moved her clinic to The Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Clinic in Gorey, and in 2012, she also opened a clinic in Evolv health store in Enniscorthy. Hogan is a teacher of yoga, exercise and meditation and has provided many workshops in stress management and positive lifestyles. In January 2013, Holos moved from the kitchen to a dedicated space in Enniscorthy Enterprise and Technology Centre. Following the launch of Holos Skincare in January 2014, the company went on in October of 2014 to win the Bank of Ireland Home or Craft-based Start-up of the Year Award, which was presented to her by Gavin Duffy.

HORSE FIRST Sector: Equine Owner: Patrick ‘Paddy’ Hughes

dietary supplements during his 30 years in the horse business, Hughes felt that the products that were available were disappointing, and with his equestrian knowledge, set up the company. Today top riders such as Michael Whitaker, Ludger Beerbaum, Jessica Kurten and William Fox Pitt are all active users of Horse First products. Horse First currently exports in 30 countries worldwide. The company won the Exporter of the Year Award sponsored by InvestNI at the Greater Newry Business Awards recently. The Horse First product range includes Relax Me which is used to settle nerves, Hoof First which promotes stronger hooves, B Well which is used to rebalance the digestive system and many more.

INHANCE TECHNOLOGY Sector: Tech CEO: Paul Prendergast

HOLOS Sector: Healthcare Founder: Niamh Hogan

Niamh Hogan opened a natural health centre in Gorey called Holos Health 30

Business & Finance July 2015

Horse First was founded in 2008 by Paddy Hughes, a well-known and respected horse producer in the show jumping and eventing spheres, who has sent horses all over the world. Having tried and tested a huge variety of equine

Inhance Technology is a leading provider of crossplatform mobile solutions for wireless retailers, insurers and trade-in companies. Inhance Mobile enables clients to support their customers throughout the complete lifecycle of their device.

Features app include content transfer, mobile device and family security, malware and apps permission checker, content back-up features and mobile trade-in valuation. It can also facilitate eCommerce (including contextual communications), customer support and a range of integration options including CRM systems integration, store location and more. Founded in Cork, Ireland in 2005, with sales hubs in the USA and UK, the company works with leading international companies including Best Buy, AIG and Carphone Warehouse.

INISHTECH Sector: Tech CEO: Aidan Gallagher Founded in 2009 and based in Dublin, InishTech’s vision is to help software developers unlock the commercial potential in their software. The company is privately held, with the major shareholders being the founders, private investors, Enterprise Ireland and Microsoft Corp. Software Potential from InishTech is an innovative cloud-based service that enables you to unlock the commercial potential in your on premise, SaaS and web-based applications. With licensing, packaging, code protection and usage analytics all combined into an easy-to-use SaaS service, you can manage and control your software in the marketplace like never before. Several hundred customers depend on the Software Potential service

ELEVATION 100 to protect and license thousands of applications in the marketplace, InishTech is already an international leader in the field of software licensing.

INITIAFY Sector: ICT CEO and co-founder: Sean Fennell

Initiafy is an online tool which allows users to pre-induct newstarters before they arrive on site. The service is fast and cost effective. The Initiafy platform is fully customisable to any branding and content – embed company videos, audio, maps, images, documents and text which can be viewed on any mobile device or laptop. The Initiafy platform is currently helping many organisations in managing the initial steps of their contingent workforce. The platform is continuously being improved on, allowing organisations to deliver safety and HR training effectively.

INSTIL SOFTWARE Sector: Tech CEO: Tara Simpson

Instil is a one-stop software development consultancy specialising in the creation of bespoke mobile, desktop and enterprise systems. The company provides secondment, mentoring, and training services to clients worldwide, including global Fortune 500 firms such as Bell, Deloitte, Intel, and Visa, as well as local micro-firms. Instil Software develops one-off, bespoke solutions for the desktop, mobile, web and server-side, providing short, medium and longterm on-site development assistance and training on all aspects of software development. CEO Tara Simpson has worked across many domains and technologies, including 10 years writing compilers, databases and emulation software, three years working in insurance software and the last 10 years working in telco, medical and network software.

INSULCHECK Sector: Medical Managing director: John Hughes InsulCheck was set up in 2009 by founders John Hughes and William Cirillo. Hughes has type 1 diabetes which is how the concept of InsulCheck was born. InsulCheck removes the doubt for insulin pen users while offering their care team an extra level of security as their patients deal with their condition. Using a simple, light addon that clips to their existing pen, the time since the last injection is recorded on a digital display. Registered in the Republic of Ireland, the company is

based in the Learning and Innovation Centre at the Institute of Technology, Blanchardstown, Dublin.

LOGENTRIES Sector: ICT CEO: Andrew Burton

patterns, numbers, or fields within log files and offering one-way hash coding, the DataHub provides an additional layer of security and protection and assures that no sensitive log data leaves the network.

MAXIMUM MEDIA Sector: Media CEO: Niall McGarry

Logentries aims to eliminate the complexity of managing applications and systems in today’s distributed environments, delivering valuable log data insight. Logentries users can easily create automated, custom tags based on search criteria. Tags only take seconds to create and are automatically applied to logs coming into the Logentries service and highlighted in the log view. Logentries monitors, searches and correlates log data in real-time, providing live tail visibility within seconds. All logs pass through a pre-processing engine, tagging and filtering important events in live mode. Filtering can also be applied automatically to only view events that contain particular definition. Logentries DataHub is offering the first cloudbased service for log management real-time analytics designed to enable security, privacy, and sensitive data protection. By automatically detecting and tracking specific

Maximum Media is the umbrella brand behind,, and From the inception of Joe. ie in 2010 to the addition of in 2012, in 2014 and in 2015, the Maximum Media Network has established its position as the provider of one of Ireland’s leading lifestyle websites. Maximum Media has grown significantly since its humble beginnings in 2010 In 2015, Maximum Media expanded into the UK market with the launch of

MCOR TECHNOLOGIES Sector: Tech Founders: Conor and Fintan MacCormack

Mcor Technologies is an innovative manufacturer of the world’s most affordable, full-colour, safe and ecofriendly 3D printers. They are the only 3D printers to use ordinary business-A4/ July 2015 Business & Finance


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ELEVATION 100 letter paper as they build material. Mcor Technologies was formed by brothers Dr Conor MacCormack and Fintan MacCormack. They wanted to create a set of accessible tools based on selective deposition lamination (SDL) technology that would provide the freedom to innovate in an unlimited way. Their journey started in 2005 with the vision of a future where everyone can easily turn their ideas into low-cost, full-colour, safe and eco-friendly 3D objects. Providing accessibility to a once niche technology is the driving force behind the company, with the Matrix and IRIS range of 3D printers the result of this vision. Mcor’s mission with the Matrix and IRIS is to bring 3D printing to the masses and to make 3D printing as easy as printing on paper. Mcor has doubled its’ revenue and employees year-on-year over the last four years, raising over $16m from private and venture capital sources and building up a patent portfolio of over 40 patents. Mcor Technologies vision is to build the business into a billion dollar Irish-based company.

Medcoll is an independently owned biotechnology company that specialises in health and beauty nutraceutical supplements and is at the forefront of producing high-quality products that have been scientifically formulated. The company’s mission is to improve the health and function of the skin in a natural, safe and noninvasive manner. Founded by Roz Martin, the Mullingar-based firm recently secured a €5m contract to supply its anti-ageing and skincare supplements into pharmacy chains across the United Arab Emirates. MedColl also signed two further deals worth €2m to distribute its products in Iraq and Lebanon. The deals follow on from a €1 million distribution deal signed by the company with Il Ittihad Drugs in the UAE last year.

MEETINGSBOOKER. COM Sector: Conferencing Founder: Ciaran Delaney

MEDSERV Sector: Medical Founder: Cormac Loughrey

MEDCOLL Sector: Medical CEO: Roz Martin

Ireland, including surgeons, physicians, anaesthetists, radiologists and pathologists from all major hospitals. Given the sensitive nature of the information Medserv processes, the company has all the necessary processes and checks in place when it comes to data protection and has been independently audited by PwC and the Data Protection Commissioners to test the robustness of its IT security systems.

Medserv is an Irish company that was established by Cormac Loughrey in 2005 which has rapidly grown to become the largest company specialising in medical billing in Ireland. The company’s clients include many of the top hospital consultants/ consultant groups in is a Dublin-based meeting venue booking portal offering access to over 70,000 meeting rooms in 134 countries around the world. The company has recently completed a €1m funding round.’s investment was led by the AIB Start Up Accelerator Fund managed by ACT Venture Capital and includes funding from Enterprise Ireland and the Bank of Ireland StartUp and Emerging Sectors Equity Fund managed by Delta Partners. In addition, the founder and former chairman of HostelWorld. com, Tom Kennedy and Paddy Holahan, have

invested along with’s current CEO Feargal Mooney. The funding will allow to continue its international expansion by further developing its booking engine, investing in online advertising and rolling out an enterprise platform. The company plans to create 25 new roles.

METABOLOMIC DIAGNOSTICS Sector: Medical CEO: Charles Garvey Metabolomic Diagnostics is an innovative medical diagnostics company involved in the development of a breakthrough technology in conjunction with University College Cork (UCC) to provide predictive diagnosis of preeclampsia in early pregnancy. This technology has the potential to revolutionise prenatal care and dramatically reduce overall healthcare costs globally. In February this year. Metabolomic Diagnostics announced it had secured an additional €750K in venture funding bringing the total investment in the company in the last year to €1.5m. This latest funding round values the company at 44% higher than the previous round. The SOSventures Ireland Fund, as well as the AIB Seed Capital Fund and Enterprise Ireland, have invested in the company, will be extremely beneficial to the firm. “The second round of funding shows the sustained confidence in our pre-eclampsia tests, which are being developed at our July 2015 Business & Finance


ELEVATION 100 site in Little Island in Cork,” said Charles Garvey, CEO Metabolomic Diagnostics. “With almost 80,000 deaths each year globally as a result of pre-eclampsia, this technology has the potential to save lives and revolutionise pre-natal care.”

MONERE DEVELOPMENT SERVICES Sector: Education CEO: Monica Murphy

Monere Development Services is a learning and development business established in 2011. The company designs, implements and evaluates training and learning interventions. It specialises in graduate training programmes, career development and management development programmes. The company is headquartered in Waterford with a satellite office in Dublin. Learning and development professional Monica Murphy established the business after she spotted a gap in the market. The company has been self-funded to date but has received some support from Waterford Leadership Partnership and Waterford Enterprise Board. Murphy and her team identified 14 key objectives to help grow the business 34

Business & Finance July 2015

in 2015, including securing finance for a larger office and adding more employees. Ultimately, the plan is for the company to become the partner of choice for world-class learning, development and training solutions.

MOVIDIUS Sector: Tech Chief operating officer: Sean Mitchell Movidius envisions a future where cameras in connected devices will approach – and eventually surpass – the capabilities of human vision. To enable that future, the company is developing visual sensing technology that brings awareness and perception to cameras in connected devices. Movidiu s enables them to create totally new vision capabilities that transform how the devices and their users will interact with the world around them through intelligent, vision- based technology. Since 2006, the company has been building and refining its vision-centric technology to deliver better performance at low power requirements. Movidius headquarters are located in San Mateo, California. The company also operates development centres out of Dublin and Timisoara, Romania. Movidius is backed by a number of venture investors, including: AIB Seed Capital Fund, ARCH Venture Partners, Atlantic Bridge Capital, Capital-E, DFJ Esprit, Robert Bosch Venture Capital, Summit Bridge Capital, and Sunny Optical Technology Group.



Sector: Consultancy Managing director: James Mulhall

Sector: ICT CEO: Peadar Gormley

Murphy Mulhall is a niche property consultancy firm, recognised as being specialists in office agency, investments, valuations, tenant representation, strategic solutions, asset management and retail agency. In 2014, Murphy Mulhall, through its association with leading UK property partnership Gerald Eve, became part of a new real estate alliance network across Europe. Making the announcement James Mulhall, managing director of Murphy Mulhall said:“Having known Gerald Eve for over five years, we have seen the benefits of working together on investment transactions and most recently in the areas of rating and hotel valuations. Through this alliance, we will benefit from new European investor and corporate clients who have requirements/holdings in Ireland.” Early this year, Jason Miller was appointed as a director with responsibility for leading the firm’s retail team. Mulhall commented: “Having already cemented our reputation in office and investment agency, the next logical step is for us to bolster our retail team. Jason brings with him bags of experience on the occupier and leasing side and will be a valuable resource for existing and new clients.”

The MyPlace Connect portal allows companies to better get to know customers and increase customer loyalty by using email alerts to keep them up-to-date with promotions. MyPlace Connect’s mission to bring wi-fi to everyone’s favourite café, pub, or public hangout in Ireland. The MyPlace Connect network is solely funded by the venues where the service is available and eliminates the need for codes to access the internet following a one-off registration. Initially developed as an advertising platform, MyPlace Connect has grown to become a highly adaptable, mobile cloudbased, hotspot solution.

NEARFORM Sector: ICT CEO: Cian O’Maidín When Cian Ó’Maidín and Richard Rodger started nearForm in 2011, their vision was to transform the way that software is built. Ó’Maidín and Rodger were among Europe’s first software experts to adopt the new software technology Node.js. In 2012, the company

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ELEVATION 100 organised and ran NodeDublin, the first major European Node.js conference. As time has progressed, more and more organisations are realising the benefits of using Node. js to innovate and to speed up the process of software delivery. nearForm’s goal is to de-risk Node.js as a technology and to help enterprise development teams transition to using the software.

monitor in excess of 33,000 cameras across the globe. Netwatch was the first company in Europe to combine specialist video processing technologies with satellite communications to provide cost effective protection solutions for clients. The company now employs over 150 staff and operates in four continents with clients across Europe, South Africa, the Middle East and the US.



Sector: Tech Co-founder and CEO: David Walsh

Established in Carlow in 2003, Netwatch deploys the most advanced video processing technologies to proactively monitor and protect their client’s properties and assets. Netwatch is unique as it proactively protects properties using live audio warnings to ward off intruders. Intervention specialists direct operations remotely from the Netwatch Communication Hub in Carlow, visually verifying the intruders, and intervene as soon as security is breached by verbally alerting the intruders they are being watched with a personalised warning. Since 2003, Netwatch has prevented more than 40,000 crimes and currently

Sector: Medical CEO: Dr Ross O’Neill

Neuromod Devices is an Irish medical device company which has developed an innovative tinnitus treatment called mutebutton. The treatment is based on neuromodulation, a branch of medicine that uses sensory stimulation to manipulate the brain’s ability to learn and re-learn, known as neuroplasticity. Founded in 2010, the company has developed a stable platform technology, which it can use for rapid development and evaluation of neuromodulatory interventions. The company’s first product, mutebutton is currently available exclusively in Ireland,

ahead of wider phased European and global launches scheduled for 2015.

NEWSWHIP Sector: Media CEO: Paul Quigley

Paul Quigley and Andrew Mullaney co-founded NewsWhip in 2011. Their plan was to use social data to identify the best content on the web in real-time. The team won a place on the National Digital Research Centre’s (NDRC) Launchpad Accelerator programme in September 2011, and launched an early version of NewsWhip, earning coverage from the BBC, The Next Web, Mashable and many other outlets. NewsWhip unveiled its Spike platform for newsrooms in 2012. The tool attracted positive reviews and soon had hundreds of active users. Those users now include newsrooms all over the world, including the US. Today, the Huffington Post, BuzzFeed and Bild. NewsWhip continues to attract significant media attention, especially for its regular analysis of content performance on social media. NewsWhip data and analysis is frequently referenced in digital media stories from the Wall Street Journal to Mashable.

NewsWhip is based on Dublin’s South William Street, and at NeueHouse, on East 25th Street, New York City.

NOBÓ Sector: Food and beverage Founders: Rachel and Brian Nolan

Nobó is a company dedicated to creating delicious and healthy, dairy-free foods. All of its products are handmade in Ireland. Founders, Rachel and Brian Nolan are selfconfessed food geeks. After spending time living in New York working in finance and advertising respectively, the two moved to Italy to work in a restaurant and to immerse themselves in a ‘culture of food’. Nobó uses a small number natural, highly nutritious ingredients and nothing else. No gums, stabalisers, preservatives or additives are used in its products. In May this year, Nobó invented a new ice-cream that doesn’t have dairy or additives. Selling to 300 shops around Ireland, the company also shipped to the United Arab Emirates. Boosted by a three-star gold medal win in the UK Great Taste Awards last year, Nobó is now talking to distributors and multiples July 2015 Business & Finance



NOSTRA Sector: ICT Founder: Kevin O’Loughlin

Nostra focus on providing IT service support to businesses in many sectors, such as education, IT support, hotel IT support and retail IT support. With the emerging cloud computing technology boom, Nostra provide support and maintenance to a variety of different client sectors. Nostra has signed a number of significant deals recently including a partnership agreement with the Office of Public Works (OPW) to take over its ICT support contract for the next few years. Senior IT consultant and Co-founder of Nostra, Gary Byrne commented: “Nostra has gone through a period of sustained growth over the past few years, and this is a direct result of our dedication to great customer service. We now offer a 24 x 7 IT support service to a large number of companies around Ireland, the UK, and across the globe.”

NUA NATURALS Sector: Food and beverage Managing director: Hilary Foley 38

Business & Finance July 2015

NUA Naturals is a health food business situated at the cutting edge of the rapidly growing global trends of health and wellness such as raw foods, gluten-free and vegan. Based in Galway, the company is a supplier and producer of organic health and super foods across the globe. Formally known as Ireland’s Raw Kitchen, the company produce and supply raw and organic products sourced from around the world. The company was originally founded in 2011 by a group of friends to strived to make nutritious, raw, gluten free foods readily available to the Irish market. The owner’s first success in the health food industry came from importing Maca powder and White Mulberries. This inspired them to find and import other previously obscure superfoods that are now bursting onto the health food scene due to their amazing nutrition benefits including: Chia seeds, Acai, Golden berries, and Goji berries.

NVP ENERGY LIMITED Sector: Life sciences Managing director: Michael Murray NVP Energy’s low temperature anaerobic digestion (Lt-AD) technology

is a cost-effective, energypositive wastewater treatment solution which when used can lowering a plant’s operational expenditure and greenhouse gas emissions. This unique treatment solution is ideal for low strength wastewater producers, such as those in the food and drinks, dairy, brewery, municipal waste water and pharmaceutical sectors, as it provides a sustainable technology which requires no input of heat to produce high-quality solution. NVP Energy’s mission is to establish Lt-AD as the preferred method for treating low strength wastewater around the globe due to its financial and environmental benefits. NVP Energy is made up of several highly qualified and skilled people who work towards bringing new environmentally friendly wastewater treatment technologies to the market. The company works in close collaboration with its technology development partners based in NUI Galway.

OCEAN HARVEST TECHNOLOGY Sector: Tech Founders: Dr Stefan Kraan and Patrick Martin

Founded in 2005 by Dr Stefan Kraan and Patrick Martin, Ocean Harvest Technology (OHT) has grown from a single headquarters in Galway to having a strong presence in North America, Asia, Europe and Australia. This global reach supports the mission of the company to develop and provide a range of natural solutions to enhance the health of the animals, the environment and the customer. OHT have created a variety of patented seaweed-based formulas centred on the bioactive ingredients. These ingredients allow its feeds to replace many of the synthetic components found in a range of agricultural and aquacultural feed ingredients. OHT is in its early stages as a company but already has a significant position in the global feed sectors of salmon, shrimp and swine. After significant R&D, OceanFeed is now being commercialised in equine, bovine, sheep and pet varieties.

ONCOMARK Sector: Medical Co-founder: Prof. William Gallagher OncoMark is a company dedicated to the discovery and development of novel diagnostics and therapeutic targets that help to save lives and improve the quality of life of cancer patients. With a strong focus on the development and application of biomarker panels, particularly supporting oncology clinical decisions and drug development, one of the company’s key areas of focus

ELEVATION 100 lies in the field of biomarker assay development. The technologies used in the development of these assays include digital slide scanning, tissue microarray construction and automated image analysis. The development and application of biomarker panels is an area of major importance, as biomarkers in cancer diagnosis are of particular help for oncologists in making clinical decisions in the development of effective anti-cancer drugs. OncoMark also conducts in-house research and development to create unique multi-marker assays for use in the discrimination of patient response to drug therapies. These products will be of particular benefit to the large pharmaceutical and health authority sectors.

OPENET Sector: Tech CEO: Niall Norton

Openet is a leading independent supplier of realtime BSS (business support systems) to communication service providers. Openet software ensures that more than 600 million mobile telecoms users around the world enjoy the best network and data experience while enabling operators to monetise data use in ‘realtime’.

Since its foundation in 1999, Openet has constantly been at the forefront of telecoms software development and innovation. The company has fostered a number of key partnerships with the largest, most progressive, and demanding operators across the globe. In 2014 the company announced it was expanding by creating 45 new positions – 30 in Dublin and 15 at its Asian hub in Kuala Lumpur.

OXYMEM Sector: Life sciences Managing director: Wayne Byrne OxyMem is a rapidly growing Irish company that spun out from University College Dublin in 2013. After 10 years of development, the OxyMem Membrane Aerated Biofilm Reactor (MABR) is set to disrupt the ageing activated sludge process. Since the early 1980s, researchers have recognised the potential of MABR but progress had been hampered due to the difficulties in controlling biofilm on the membranes. In 2003, Eoin Casey, professor at University College Dublin and his research team developed a biofilm control concept to overcome this technical hurdle. Following a further four years of research and development a prototype bioreactor for wastewater treatment was created. In 2012, the OxyMem biofilm control technology was patented and the research team extended their work in order to confirm the commercial viability of the OxyMem MABR.

More than 10 years after the first concept, and 100 years after the inception of the now ageing AS process, 2013 saw OxyMem commercialise a compelling breakthrough technology to address the urgent global need for a more energy efficient aeration solution for wastewater treatment.

The company currently has five direct employees, but that is expected to grow to 10 by the end of this year, and they anticipate that once they get to full scale production next year, they will need another 20 people to join the team.



Sector: ICT Director: Philip Hayes

Sector: Construction Director: Pat Walsh PanelDuct is a ventilation duct system composed of flat pack panels which push fit together onsite. The Mayo-based company supplies pre-insulated flatpack metal ducting which easily push-fits together onsite. This unique patented ventilation system is mass produced and is readily available off-the-shelf for immediate delivery. All panels feature integral compression seals, creating an innovative airtight system. In 2015, PanelDuct won the Irish Times InterTradeIreland Innovation Awards. Speaking after winning the award, Conal O’Neill, research and development manager of Panel Duct said: “Winning this award hopefully gives the inspirational message to the next generation of engineers that you don’t have to be working in renewable energy, or at the frontiers of medical science, to gain recognition for coming up with a clever innovation. Our innovation has come about simply by thinking about how an existing process can be accomplished in a more efficient way.”

ParkMagic is a leading developer and operator of electronic payment systems for the transport sector, designing, delivering and operating electronic toll collection (ETC) systems; on street parking (pay by phone) systems; and parking and ancillary services reservation systems. ParkMagic’s tolling brand provides the widest range of toll and parking payment systems in Ireland. The company develops its solutions in Ireland and have displayed innovation in delivering industry leading services such as Pay-by-Tweet, an industry first, and Ireland’s first payment app. Based in Limerick, the company’s staff have amassed significant expertise in the area of the design, development and operation of payment solutions for the transport sector. July 2015 Business & Finance


ELEVATION 100 PLATFORM AVENUE Sector: ICT Managing director: Patrick Dinneen Platform Avenue provides talent management software, helping organisations to source, interview and manage applications. From multinational organisations to a sole trader that needs to find the right individual, the platform is ideal for any career and opportunities page. With Platform Avenue the applicants apply in realtime whenever they choose. It also allows users to create an application form, ask applicants to upload documents, set video interview questions, and it also allows people to attach a short video or streamed video to their application to convey their skill set.

technology is based on a new innovation in noncontact ultra low volume acoustic dispensing. This platform technology brings new features, benefits and possibilities to applications where precision low volume fluid dispensing is required. The company’s multidisciplinary team has a broad range of expertise in areas such as micro-fluidics, electronics, software development, mechanical engineering, business development and biotechnology.

PolyPico Technologies is a provider of innovative fluid dispensing technology based in Galway, Ireland. Founded in 2012, the privately owned company designs, and manufactures, fluid dispensing solutions for both life science and industrial applications. PolyPico’s core platform 40

its first films in theatres and on TV this year and next year.


Rubicoin is a financial and investment app designed to transform users into informed, confident investors. Users can take a short, easy to understand audio lesson for the basics; explore curated company stock profiles and recommendations; receive premium investment advice; and watch trends in stock preferences. The Rubicoin team is made up of lifelong investors and tech experts who combine various skill sets to bring a simple method of investing to everyone. Emmet Savage is CEO and chief investor of Rubicoin. Born in Dublin, he is passionate about the stock market.

Sector: Lifestyle Founder: Danielle Ryan

POPDEEM Sector: ICT CEO: Richard Whelan


rewards or sweepstakes entries for social actions. The company then measures the performance of these campaigns through a number of redemptions, social reach and referrals.

Popdeem is an Irish born company with offices in Dublin and London. The Popdeem platform allows brands to reward customers for sharing local experiences on social networks. The system allows marketers to identify and activate their most influential customers, to start peer-to-peer conversation and drive word-of-mouth marketing. Brands can avail of their own custom branded social rewards app or integrate Popdeem into existing apps using the Popdeem Mobile SDK. In order to incentivising users to share brand experiences, the system offers customers instant

Roads Luxury is a contemporary and highly creative lifestyle brand based in Dublin. The Group consists of three companies: Roads Fragrances, Roads Publishing and Roads Entertainment. Founded by businesswoman Danielle Ryan, the brand is built around the cornerstones of present-day culture, freethinking, storytelling, original design and intelligence. Having graduated from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, Ryan began to develop the concept for Roads – a brand that creates beautiful products influenced by all aspects of culture. Four new fragrances will be launched in September 2015 and Roads Publishing will continue to publish a range of fine art, architecture, design and lifestyle illustrated books throughout 2015. In addition, Roads Entertainment will premiere

RUBICOIN Sector: Financial CEO: Emmet Savage

SIMPLY BLUE ENERGY Sector: Energy CEO: Sam Roch-Perks

Simply Blue Energy was established in 2011 to bring together a qualified team capable of developing wave energy farms in the oceans around Ireland and the UK. Ocean waves contain significant energy density

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ELEVATION 100 and have substantial commercial potential if the energy is extracted using reliable, environmentally beneficial and cost-effective technology. Recent research indicates that in order to limit global warming to 2°C and avoid the most damaging implications of climate change on human societies, one-third of the currently known oil reserves, half of the gas reserves and 80% of the coal reserves should remain unused between 2010 and 2050. Simply Blue is dedicated to harvesting the untapped potential of wave power and will play a critical role in filling the gap and balancing ecological and human needs to achieve a successful transition from fossil-fuel dependency to renewables. Simply Blue recently signed a deal with Wavehub, a UK government-backed renewable energy test site, to deploy about 200 small wave energy generators at the site. The project will cost about £45m, with some of the money coming from research and development grants.

SOCOWAVE Sector: Life sciences CEO and founder: Joe Moore

Established in 2008, Socowave is headquartered 42

Business & Finance July 2015

in the NovaUCD Innovation Park, Dublin with its R&D centre based in the National Software Centre in Cork, Ireland. Initially, Socowave licensed university research outputs in array calibration and set out to solve some key cellular application challenges. After completing proof-of-concept work in 2009 the company secured investment to fund the development of a commercial-grade active antenna system solution. Socowave delivers technology-assets to infrastructure vendors in the form of products, subsystems, testbeds and modules and the company is focused on multi-transceiver high performance radio system challenges. Socowave participates in Irish Government-funded research programmes, engaging with academic institutes to progress leading-edge technology innovations. Socowave has three external investors: Enterprise Ireland, Balderton Capital and Analog Devices.

STAYHOLD Sector: Manufacturing Co-founder: Alan Harrison

Stayhold is an Irish company founded in 2013 with a brand new patent pending

product available now online and coming to retailers soon. Stayhold products keep items safe during transporting by gripping the carpet in your car, stopping items from moving around. It is easily removable by using one of the handles and can be repositioned anywhere in your boot/ trunk. The company is growing into an international team with a variety of personnel from designers, skilled sales and marketing people, manufacturing experts and experienced logistics staff.

TENDERSCOUT Sector: Business management Founder: Tony Corrigan

with market analytics, opportunity qualification and personalisation to give companies a unique ability to compete for public sector tenders. TenderScout was established in 2003 by Tony Corrigan as a means of helping companies to find the best proposals and ventures for their needs. “In Ireland each year nearly €200 million is spent by suppliers writing proposals and bidding on government contracts,” he says. “Given that only 20pc of proposals are successful, that means that some €150 million is wasted by businesses,” he explained. “My business concept was to give suppliers the ability to predict and then improve their chances of success. I started in 2011 but it took until late 2013 to launch the product.”

THE CARE TEAM Sector: Healthcare Director: Niamh Wallace

TenderScout helps companies win tenders. The TenderScout team is comprised of technologists, data analysts and procurement experts. Its expertise is in competitive intelligence, bid/no bid analysis, partnership development, bid management, tender preparation and tender evaluation. The company’s experience is based on its work with 100s of tenders for both buyers and suppliers, right around the globe, winning tenders in sectors as diverse as medical devices, office supplies, recruitment, legal and ICT. TenderScout combines sales pipeline management

The Care Team is a home healthcare company owned and managed by nurses. Its goal is to achieve and maintain excellence in care, providing healthcare services that range from basic support and home help through to complex multi-disciplinary care in the home. The Care Team can simplify care at home by acting as a communication portal between hospitals, GPs, public health nurses, voluntary and private service providers. All staff are qualified and registered with their associated professional bodies, reference checked and Garda vetted and all healthcare workers have current CPR and manual handling certificates. The company can coordinate care from start to


Embracing Challenge and Maximising Potential THE PRINTWORKS DUBLIN CASTLE Wednesday, November 11th 2015

To reserve your place or to become a sponsor contact:

ELEVATION 100 developed a highly innovative technological software solution to help bring visibility and clarity to all aspects of compliance. It has secured a high-profile client base with healthcare companies such as Mowlam, MHA, and most recently the NHS, using its technology solution. In financial services, ViClarity boasts over 85 Irish-based credit unions and insurance related clients. With offices now in Ireland, London and Chicago, the company continues to grow its client base globally. In addition, ViClarity is now extending its unique technology into the Alternative Investment Management arena in an effort to revolutionise compliance monitoring standards in a growing industry sector.

videos via smartphones, tablets, and web applications especially in areas such as brand communications, entertainment, news reporting, e-commerce, and recruiting. Vbot TV makes it easy for users to shoot, upload and publish videos in a matter of seconds. Vbot mobile video recording applications are easily customisable to fit into the many different video workflows; from technical inspections in automotive industry, through remote recruitment interviews to crowd-sourced news reporting.

Sector: Client services Chief executive: Dan Kiely

Sector: ICT Co-founder: Bartek Czerwinski


Business & Finance July 2015

VOYA Sector: Cosmetics Founders: Mark and Kira Walton

exceptional beauty and skincare treatments with integrity and in full harmony with nature. Inspired by the longstanding traditions of the area, Voya has adopted organic and sustainable ways of creating its products and the company uses only sustainable harvesting practices for its certified organic seaweed.

WATTICS Sector: ICT CEO: Antonio Ruzzelli



Videobot is an experienced team of specialists in video archiving, encoding, interfaces and social media aiming to change the way enterprises aggregate, publish and monetise video assets. Headquartered in Dundalk, Co. Louth, co-founders Bartek Czerwinski and Frédéric Herrera have been on a mission to disrupt the way SMEs and large corporations record, manage and playback

assistance or experiential clients such as Airbnb, Travelzoo or It Works!, Voxpro continues to deliver compelling offerings to its customers and also continues to grow and expand across global markets.

Voxpro is an award winning provider of multilingual customer experience and technical support solutions to giant global brands. Headquartered in Cork, the company also has offices in Dublin and San Francisco. Voxpro started with six people above a pub in Cork and now employs 900 and is growing fast. The company continues to develop multiple sites in Cork and Dublin, build on its presence in California, and also expand into other territories. Whether the partners are Google or Nest, requiring high-level technical

Voya has grown out of a very successful family-run seaweed baths business in Strandhill, Co. Sligo, on the Atlantic coast of Ireland. Set up by Neil Walton, as the popularity of the Walton’s Seaweed Baths grew and spread, more and more patrons wondered if there was some way they could replicate the experience in their own homes. Walton then set about creating a full range of seaweed-based organic products. By combining their knowledge of the therapeutic properties of wild seaweed with the expertise of highly skilled natural cosmetic scientists, marine biologists and dermatologists from around the world, Mark and Kira Walton have been able to carry some of the unique qualities and effects of seaweed into their beauty and skincare products. Voya’s goal is to create

Wattics is a leading international company pioneering self-learning software intelligence for energy management specialists. Wattics solutions are designed to integrate all types of data for measurement and verification. Its cloud-based tool streamlines project management and offers an advanced and effective alternative to conventional solutions based on spread sheets. It is Wattics mission to assist businesses and energy professionals in turning complex energy data into clear, actionable insights. The company is dedicated to supporting resource conservation and creating unique energy-saving solutions for its customers to considerably reduce their energy and environmental costs.

ELEVATION 100 Based in Dublin, the company also operates in the UK, Europe, Northern America and Asia through its partnerships.


all over the world.

WYLDSSON Sector: Food and beverage Founder: Dave McGeady

Sector: ICT CEO: Caelen King helps patients find, compare and book the right clinics in more than 100 countries. provides detailed listings for over 100,000 clinics on its site; these include doctors, dentists, beauty and cosmetic surgery, physiotherapy, fertility and holistics. was founded in 2006 and in just a few short years the company has grown to over 50 employees. The company’s main offices are in Dublin, though it also has a presence in Poland, Brazil and Mexico. Over one million patients use every single month to find and compare clinics. In 2012, launched in Brazil with a fully localised service in Portuguese, in response to Brazil’s leading position in the plastic surgery sector. In 2013 the company launched in Mexico, in Spanish, where the dental industry is one of the most competitive in the world. Over the coming years, will continue to roll out more localised language services to patients

Wyldsson develops and manufactures premium snack and breakfast products, sold exclusively online from Wyldsson uses a calibre of ingredient that isn’t often found in supermarket products including organic Persian mulberries and Californian pomegranate. Wyldsson products have been seen in the hands of Rory McIlroy and Europe’s Ryder Cup team, the English and Scottish rugby teams, QPR, the LA Lakers, the British swimming team and TeamSKY cycling team. Wyldsson was founded by Dave McGeady. Graduating with a first in engineering from TCD, McGeady completed an MSc at Helsinki University of Technology before going to work in investment banking in London. He became interested in the huge potential to disrupt the food industry with higher quality, ‘cleaner’ food products and innovative distributions models while doing an MBA at Tel Aviv University and Kellogg School of Management. Wyldsson’s is on course to break into the UK market, and

the company is concurrently working on several new products to add to its range.

ZENDOC Sector: ICT CEO and founder: Robert Fenton

ZenDoc was founded in 2012 by Robert Fenton to simplify quality and compliance for businesses in regulated industries. The inspiration for ZenDoc came from a combination of Fenton’s background in the pharmaceutical industry and his experience in his first company, a market leading consulting company that made accreditation easy for healthcare businesses in Ireland. Based in Dublin, ZenDoc is transforming compliance for small and mid-sized organisations. It’s a quality management system that uses powerful reporting and increased transparency, and according to the founder, Robert Fenton, the potential market for ZenDoc’s product is estimated to be worth over €1bn and growing.

ZEUS PACKAGING GROUP Sector: Manufacturing CEO: Brian O’Sullivan Zeus Packaging Group is a leading specialist distribution and manufacturing group, supplying a diverse range of products and supply solutions

to a wide range of customer markets. The company’s product offering includes industrial and food service packaging alongside janitorial products in a variety of industry sectors. Established in 1998, Zeus Packaging has grown significantly from its base in Dublin and now employs over 235 people at sites in the UK, Spain, Poland and China. Customers such as Kuehne + Nagel, Cadbury, Greencore and Harrods have found Zeus Packaging invaluable in assisting operations across a network of locations. Throughout its history, the company has made a number of strategic acquisitions allowing the firm to diversify and grow across new markets

ZINOPY Sector: ICT Co-founder and CEO: John Ryan Zinopy is a leading IT solutions and services provider and Ireland’s sole Citrix Platinum Solution advisor. The company helps enterprise, SMB and public sector organisations address a wide range of IT challenges, software licensing needs, and innovate new solutions and managed services offerings. Zinopy delivers mobility, virtualisation, and security solutions designed to enable customers to work securely from any place, at any time, and manage the risks associated with increased dependence on technology. John Ryan is CEO of Zinopy, which he co-founded in 2010. Ryan has over 20 years’ experience in the IT industry in high-profile roles in the IT security sector with Entropy, and in software development with Expert Edge. n July 2015 Business & Finance





he thought of international expansion can often seem daunting. Unfamiliar markets, cultures, languages and taxation are just some of the concerns – some perceived and some very real – that regularly inhibit startups from capitalising on a growing global market. While these concerns are understandable, international expansion does have its rewards. It can help protect your business from the various fluctuations when relying on one market, it can attract funding, increase revenue and ultimately provide a more attractive investment if your exit strategy is to sell-up. It’s therefore not surprising that Irish start-ups are considering their overseas strategy right from the very outset. However, there are a number of areas to consider fully that will ensure you make the very best decision for both you and your business.

POTENTIAL LOCATIONS With 196 countries throughout the world, there’s a lot of choice. Each country has its own unique set of legislation, taxation, government incentives, markets, workforce, visas and permits. The sheer scale of information required can often be overwhelming. Creating a shortlist of potential locations will help make the process more manageable. To do this it’s important not to consider which countries look the most attractive, but to look at your own business requirements first. Ask yourself: what are the key requirements for your start-up; do you need a physical office; how long will you need to be in the country; do you plan to move overseas permanently; will you be hiring local staff or sending over existing employees; how quickly do you need to be up and running; and what is the competition and demand for your product or service? Once you’ve defined what’s important for your business, you can determine which 46

Business & Finance July 2015

country (or countries) best suit your needs. A combination of desk research and speaking with specialists who have the necessary expertise can help you make an initial shortlist of prospective locations.

TESTING THE WATER If your start-up is designed to sell its products online, a great way to learn about your potential overseas customer base is to start selling your products on websites like eBay and Amazon. Although your margins may be reduced with the commission fees associated with some sites, you can learn a lot about your potential customer base by testing the water online.

Heather Landau offers advice and assistance for start-ups looking to expand overseas.

Heather Landau, managing director,

STRUCTURE SELECTION While tax considerations should never drive the decision for your choice of location, the various tax and commercial implications of your corporate structure can have a bearing on the overall success of your business. Selecting the most effective international trading company structure requires careful planning to navigate foreign tax rules that are often complex and frequently subject to change. The various tax considerations will include: local country taxation of ongoing profits; access to tax treaties; and local country incentives. Two of the options available to you when setting up your business overseas is whether to set up a branch or a subsidiary. REWARDING OPPORTUNITIES Your company structure, local tax, employment requirements, bureaucracy, local infrastructure and competition are just some of the considerations that all need to be carefully researched before making your final decision. But by taking the time to conduct the necessary research, it can often highlight extremely rewarding opportunities; and you may just find that international expansion is a very real possibility for your start-up. n

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On the fast track The eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards, which recognise the fastest growing and most innovative companies across Ireland, officially opened for entries on July 14th at The Marker Hotel.


ith a spotlight on innovation, international scalability, differentiation and strategic investment to the Irish economy, the eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards celebrates the success of Ireland’s most innovative companies. Speaking at the launch of the awards programme, Eavann Murphy, chief

commercial officer, eircom Business Solutions, encouraged companies to get involved. “We work with so many of Ireland’s best and brightest companies and this is a wonderful opportunity to shine a light on the innovation that is so often overlooked in the hustle and bustle of an enterprise in its early days.

Mark Little, Eavann Murphy and Ian Hyland

Lisa Gibbons, CaminoWays; Trevor Hull, Independent Media Sales


Business & Finance July 2015

The eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards will be a platform to showcase the talent, creativity and success of Irish business on an international stage, and we are delighted to support these awards.” To enter the eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards visit: W: n

Katie Nolan, Monica Murphy, Ciara Ahearne, MONERE Development Services

The eircom Elevation Fast Company digital magazine


Nilakanthi Ford, KFV Consulting; Dan Feaheny, InSource Recruitment; Kritika Ashok,

Sarah Hennessy; Niall McGarry, Maximum Media; Kevin McDonald, Zomato; Karen Aherne, Zomato

Niamh Hogan, Holos Skincare; Melissa Curley, SocialBee Afternoon Tea

Simon Kennedy, Tekenable; Niall O’Connell, MidPoint HR; Eoin Houlihan, SouthWestern

Rita Iammarino, Robot Ted and Maurizio Mastrangelo, Flavour of Italy

Orlaith Blaney, CEO McCann Blue; John Cullen Aurantan; Alison Healy, Agricultural Magnetics Limited

Tara Peterman & Mark Little

Leonard Hobbs, Intel; Bill Archer, eircom

Mark Little speaking at the launch of the eircom Elevation Fast Company Awards

July 2015 Business & Finance


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