Seán Sherlock T.D., Minister for Research and Innovation, joined Paddy Cosgrave, founder and CEO, Dublin Web Summit and Margaret Colton, Head of Marketing , Electric Ireland, today to announce the finalists of Ireland’smost prestigious startup competition, The Electric Ireland Spark of Genius Competition, the winner of which will be announced at the Dublin Web Summit on October 18th 2012 with a prize fund worth €100,000.
The competition, now in its third year, focuses on the most promising high potential startups. 1,000 entries have been shortlisted to 100, who will be offered an opportunity to pitch to leading international investors (Google Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, Kleiner Perkins, Atomico, Accel and many others), industry leaders, startup experts at the Dublin Web Summit taking place at the RDS on the 17th and 18th of October.
Speaking at the launch, Seán Sherlock T.D., Minister for Research and Innovation said “The government is committed to encouraging entrepreneurship and I’m delighted to see such a large response to the Electric Ireland Spark of Genius. The competition will give Irish start-ups a great opportunity, putting them in touch with international investors as well as giving them crucial legal and accounting advice”.
Paddy Cosgrave, CEO, Web Summit said “We see this competition as an incredible platform for Irish startups to pitch to the world’s top investors and media. This is the third year of the Electric Ireland Spark of Genius Award and we have received a 5 fold increase, almost 1,000 applications this year. The finalists will present from one of four separate stages – social, mobile, consumer and enterprise – to judges of investors, industry and startup experts. We’ve seen a huge increase in the numbers of startups at this October’s Summit with over 250 startups exhibiting. Of the 3,000 attendees at the summit, over half will come from outside of Ireland”.
Margaret Colton, Head of Marketing, Electric Ireland, commenting on the list of finalists said, “At Electric Ireland, we are committed to powering the innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit that is inherent in start-up companies developing in Ireland today. The large number of entries to the Spark of Genius Award this year is only testament to the hunger and drive that is part of the start-up companies in Ireland today and we are delighted to support such ambitions through the Dublin Web Summit.”
Former winners of the Electric Ireland Spark of Genius Award include daily deals software providers Redeem&Get who have enjoyed success since their 2011 award, with a launch to a global audience and the securement of private investment of €1.5 million.
The Electric Ireland Spark of Genius Awards will take place at The Dublin Web Summit on the 17th & 18th October, the winner will be announced at the close of the summit.
Congratulations to all companies, the full list is available Here.