YOUNG innovators from all over Cork have been their paces as part of the nationwide search to find Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE).
Some 43 applicants, shortlisted from almost 200, came together for an intensive residential business boot camp held at the Celtic Ross Hotel in Rosscarbery.
Designed to help participants develop the skills required to take their entrepreneurial ideas and businesses to the next level with support from experts, the two day bootcamp is an important part of the competition which includes learning as well as networking.
This is the fourth year of the IBYE competition, which was open to anyone aged between 18 and 35 with an innovative and original idea or concept for a product or service that is either at start up or early development stage.
In Cork alone there is a €150,000 investment fund up for grabs, and LEO Cork City, LEO South Cork and LEO Cork North and West are each looking for the best entrepreneurs with the potential to shine in the one of three categories - ‘Best Business Idea’, ‘Best Start-Up Business’ and ‘Best Established Business’.
Each of the young entrepreneurs who attended the boot camp will present their business plan and pitch to a judging panel in their region in the coming weeks to vie for a share of the investment fund available according to criteria including businesses’ investment needs and business prospects.
At a County Final on December 14th, each LEO in Cork will award up to six investments to three category winners and three runners-up for their region.
The local winners in the ‘Best Start-Up Business’ and ‘Best Established Business’ categories will receive investments of €15,000 each and runner-up in each will each receive €5,000. While the ‘Best Business Idea’ winner will receive an investment of €7,000 and the runner-up will receive €3,000 investment.
The county winners will then go forward to represent their respective LEO in a regional final in January 2018, and if successful there, will fly the Cork flag at the national final to find ‘Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur’ before the end of the year.
See www.ibye.ie for more.