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Ludgate launches €450,000 seed fund as Digital Week kicks off

November 10th, 2016 12:56 PM

By Siobhan Cronin

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AS National Digital Week (NDW) kicks off in Skibbereen, a second round of seed funding for start-up tech firms has been launched by NDW organisers Ludgate.

The Round II call has been issued to release a €450,000 Ludgate seed capital fund designed to support start-up and early stage companies with job creation potential. Selected companies for the fund will locate in the Ludgate Hub in Skibbereen, Ireland’s first rural hub to receive a massive 1GB (1000Mb) connectivity. 

Start-ups are encouraged to apply for the seed fund to help develop and scale their business, attract new talent, or develop their product or service. Those wishing to apply are invited to meet the Ludgate investment team on Friday November 11th during National Digital Week.

The Digital get-together is set to attract over 1,600 people for discussion and debate on some of the most topical issues facing entrepreneurship and digital accessibility in Ireland. Dedicated speaker sessions will focus on topics including agri-tech, female founders & leadership and the sharing economy.

Taking place from November 10th-12th, National Digital Week is organised by the Ludgate Digital Hub and is supported by event partners AIB, Vodafone and Google. The only event of its kind in a non-urban area in Ireland, National Digital Week will cater for everyone and anyone with an interest in the future of digital technology.

With no ‘VIP’ areas, attendees will have access to all stages, workshops and one-to-one clinics. At night, National Digital Week offers a festival-like atmosphere where attendees can enjoy activities around West Cork, as well as access to all entertainment in the arenas each night.

Speakers will include Ben Verwaayen, former CEO of Alcatel-Lucent, Mark MacGann of Uber, Gráinne McCarthy of the Wall Street Journal and Robin Barnett, British Ambassador to Ireland. Saturday afternoon will have broadcaster Pat Kenny MC for a panel discussion on ‘Creating Ireland’s gigabit society’.

Meanwhile, the Ludgate Digital Hub in Skibbereen has made it to the finals of the European Broadband Awards.

The 1MB hub, established by a committee of local business people, has been selected as a finalist in the European Broadband Awards 2016 by a jury that chose 16 finalists.

Altogether 66 projects applied for the European Broadband Award 2016 from all over Europe. Günther Oettinger, Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, will announce the five winners on November 14th at a special award ceremony in Brussels.

Ireland South MEP Deirdre Clune congratulated the Ludgate Hub on its inclusion as a finalist in the awards.

‘Hubs like Ludgate create an entrepreneurial culture in an area and drive job creation. This is a model that should be rolled out in other towns across Cork,’ she said. 

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