Home > DCU Ryan Academy for Entrepreneurship, Propeller Venture Accelerator > Growth in Technology Start-ups Continues as Applications Double for DCU Ryan Academy Propeller Venture Accelerator Programme

Growth in Technology Start-ups Continues as Applications Double for DCU Ryan Academy Propeller Venture Accelerator Programme

The second year of the DCU Ryan Academy’s Propeller Venture Accelerator Programme for technology start-ups has been vastly oversubscribed, with applications outstripping places available by almost 95 per cent.  Applications to the Fund, which provides capital investment and a three month intensive mentoring programme for entrepreneurs, were received from over 20 countries including Ireland, Germany, Finland, USA, Australia, Iran, India, Israel, South Africa, Brazil, Rwanda and China. The interest shown is a clear indication that Ireland is seen as a hub for entrepreneurship and innovation both at home and abroad.

The Propeller Venture Accelerator Programme, which has been ranked 7th best in Europe in an independent study of accelerator programmes commissioned by the Kauffman Fellows Program, was established in 2010 with the aim of fast-tracking early stage Irish and international technology start-up companies in Dublin.  Each of the chosen companies receives €30,000 seed fund injection, tailored and targeted mentoring and training, as well as three months incubation with free space and services.

The chosen companies will enter the Propeller Venture Accelerator offices on 2 January 2012, and will be met by over 60 mentors whose invaluable experience will be used to advise and lead these companies on a path of success.

While recruitment of mentors continues, many well-known businesspeople are already involved, including Frank Hannigan – Chairman – Goshido, John Canacott – Serial Entrepreneur, Maurice Mason – Partner Irelandia Aviation and Liam Mullaney – Managing Director Sage. At the end of the three month programme, each company will pitch their business and products to potential investors from around the globe at a special ‘Demo Day’.

Terence Bowden, Venture Manager of the Programme said, “We are delighted with the huge level of interest shown from Ireland and all over the world because it highlights just how much this programme has to offer start-up companies and it’s a clear sign of the appetite for entrepreneurism and innovation in Ireland’.

Our aim here at the DCU Ryan Academy is to find good people with good ideas, and give them all the tools and support they need to take their ideas to market. Ireland is awash with entrepreneurs and we seek to help nurture and foster innovation.’

The first year of the programme, which finished in April 2011, brought huge success for the six companies that took part. Operating in technology areas ranging from mobile applications to clean tech, online gaming, health informatics and internet applications, the start-ups are now in the process of closing seed funding deals totally over €1 million. The companies, who include Associate Mobile, Fantom, GreenEgg Technologies, Healthcomms, Simple Lifeforms and VendorShopSocial, each employed two people when starting the programme, have now created an additional 18 jobs since finishing the programme.

Speaking about his experience, Tom Byrne, CEO and Founder of HealthComms said, The Propeller Venture Accelerator has been a great experience and one that has truly accelerated our company by at least 2 years, if not more, in just 3 months. With easy access to a number of experienced mentors we were able to achieve results so much faster than if we had been on our own.”

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