Wednesday, 19 June 2019

The Final of The Ireland Funds Business Plan Competition 2019

Date : Wednesday, 19 June 2019

The Ireland Funds Business Plan Competition, now in its eighth year, seeks to nurture creativity and hone entrepreneurial skills amongst Irish-based early-stage technology entrepreneurs. Candidates will have the opportunity to develop their business ideas and compete for cash prizes, other supports and the chance to pitch for a place on one of NDRC’s investment programmes.

What is it?

We are looking for smart new business ideas from amongst Ireland’s early-stage technology entrepreneurs. Convince us that your business idea is the next big thing and you will receive support to develop it from concept to pitch. Ten companies will be selected to participate in four pre-acceleration workshops at NDRC in Dublin. At the final, our judging panel comprising of leading entrepreneurs, executives and investors, will select the winner and runners-up.

The Competition

The Ireland Funds has partnered with NDRC to help you bring your idea from concept to pitch. Ten business ideas will receive mentoring and support from NDRC through a series of workshops during May and June, with the opportunity to compete for €29,000 in prize money, other supports, and to pitch and for a place on one of NDRC’s investment programmes.

First prize
€15,000 cash prize and the opportunity to pitch for a place on one of NDRC’s investment programmes. NDRC is Ireland’s most successful digital accelerator, specifically designed to enable entrepreneurial teams transform solid ideas into commercially viable start-ups.

Runner-up prizes
€7,000 cash prize (1st runner-up)
€2,000 cash prize (2nd runner-up)
All finalists will receive detailed feedback on their business ideas and pitches from the NDRC Venture Investment team and judging panel.

Mental health innovation prize
€5,000 cash prize for a technology idea that focuses on mental health, courtesy of St Patrick’s Mental Health Services.


  • Wednesday, 15 May 2019 Shortlist selection announced

Workshop Days at NDRC, Dublin (teams must be available for all sessions)

  • Workshop 1: Thursday, 23 May 2019 Problem Canvas
  • Workshop 2: Wednesday, 29 May 2019 Customer Validation
  • Workshop 3: Wednesday, 5 June 2019 Value Proposition + Market Opportunity
  • Workshop 4: Monday, 10 June 2019 Pitch Preparation
  • Final pitches and prize presentation Final pitches will take place in Belfast on Wednesday, 19 June 2019.

About The Ireland Funds
The Ireland Funds’ mission is to harness the power of a global philanthropic network of friends of Ireland to promote and support peace, culture, education and community development across the island of Ireland and among Irish communities around the world.

About NDRC
NDRC sources and builds digital companies to invest in. NDRC has a mandate from the State (Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment) to make commercial investments in early stage startups, ensuring digital entrepreneurship is a vibrant and growing part of the economy.

For more information, please contact:

Hannah Brogan
The Ireland Funds
+353 (0) 1 6627878

Helen Fullen
+353 (0) 87 977 1804


Hannah Brogan

Denshaw House, 121-122 Baggot Street Lower, Dublin 2, Ireland

T - +353-1-662-7878


Mentor Insight Series

William (Bill) S. McKiernan, President of WSM Capital LLC, and founder of CyberSource Corporation
Bill McKiernan

Sarah Friar, CEO of Nextdoor
Sarah Friar

Orla Gogarty, Director of Digital Health, Transformation and Partnerships at
St Patricks Mental Health Services
Orla Gogarty

Fintan McGovern, founder of Firmwave
Fintan McGovern

Gareth Quinn, founder of Digital DNA
Gareth Quinn

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