connect 2018 • 41 “The teams were the best prepared that we have seen in the seven years that we have been hosting the com- petition. The ideas were innovative, the presentations were thoughtful, and the teams were passionate about their businesses. I am very encouraged by the state of entrepreneurship in Ireland and it is very gratifying to see how interest in entrepreneurship among young people has grown since we started the competition. It is espe- cially gratifying to see so many women participating in the competition and indeed our winners this year were two bright young women.” – Bill McKiernan, founder of The Ireland Funds Business Plan Competition Third runner-up: Safecility Innovation Prize Winner: Machine Eye Second runner-up: RecEasy