Waterford today hosted a Startup Gathering Town Hall meeting to accelerate Waterford’s plans for the Startup Gathering. Set to be the biggest regionally distributed startup event in the world, Startup Gathering 2015 will take place across Ireland from the 5th to 10th October with Waterford hosting its Startup Gathering Day on Tuesday, 6th October. In excess of 50 events are being planned across the week in Waterford, Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway for national and international entrepreneurs.
Under the theme 'Start, Scale and Succeed from Ireland', Startup Gathering 2015 aims to:
Promote entrepreneurship and help identify entrepreneurial talent at an early stage across the country.
Help develop world class regional startup hubs around the existing strengths in each region to accelerate the growth of startups in Ireland.
Raise the international profile of the startup sector in each region of Ireland to global entrepreneurs, investors and R&D teams.
In Waterford, there will be a strong emphasis on developing startup hubs around the key strengths in the Waterford region, the Pharma / BioTech and ICT Technology sectors, as well as promoting startups and entrepreneurship across all industry sectors.
In preparation for the Startup Gathering Waterford events, a 'Town Hall' meeting was hosted by the Startup Gathering Waterford City Coordinator Eugene Crehan, a well-known startup community leader in the region, together with Bank of Ireland. Attending the meeting, representatives from Waterford Institute of Technology, Waterford Council, Waterford Chamber, TSSG, Enterprise Ireland, IDA, Genzyme, Eirgen, Feedhenry, NearForm and GBR Direct gathered to discuss the goals of Startup Gathering 2015 and to assess the full scope of events and initiatives that can be accelerated for Startup Gathering Waterford and the development of the world class startup hubs around key industry strengths in Waterford.
Part of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation’s Action Plan for Jobs 2015, the Startup Gathering is a key building block towards making Ireland a global startup hub by 2020. It is also sponsored by Bank of Ireland, a key strategic partner, who will actively support this initiative through their extensive national network of branches and commitment to the development of the SME sector in Ireland.
Startup Gathering 2015 is being led by Startup Ireland, a public private not-for-profit partnership dedicated to the goal of making Ireland the best place in the world to start and scale a startup. The initiative is being championed by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton T.D., together with the Minister for Business and Employment, Ged Nash T.D., who is chairing the Startup Gathering National Steering Group.
Minister Nash said, “Startup companies create two thirds of all new jobs in their first five years and are vital in terms of the Government’s goal of reaching full employment by 2018. The Startup Gathering is an opportunity for us to showcase Ireland as a global startup hub and to attract international high potential startups to choose this country as their base. But, equally importantly is supporting and assisting our home grown startups to achieve their full potential. I believe if offers Waterford a real opportunity to showcase its potential as a startup hub for international and indigenous startups of all sizes.”
Eugene Crehan, City Coordinator for the Startup Gathering Waterford said “This is a real opportunity to create alignment across key public and private stakeholders in the Waterford region to build on Waterford's economic strengths and develop world class startup hubs in Waterford. The Town Hall meeting is an important step to engage influencers who are critical to achieving these goals and to align events and initiatives with Startup Gathering 2015.”
Eoin Costello, CEO of Startup Ireland said “The future growth of Ireland's economy in terms of innovation and jobs is closely linked to the performance of Ireland's startup sector. Creating a diverse pipeline of indigenous and international high-growth startups and the internationally competitive regional startup hubs that will accelerate their growth is essential and these are the key goals of the Startup Gathering 2015.”
Ian Mernagh, Waterford Area Manager for Bank of Ireland said “Bank of Ireland is the ‘Enterprise Bank’ for business in Ireland and we are committed to supporting the growth in business recovery in this country. As part of this commitment supporting and enabling businesses in Waterford is a key priority for us and we are delighted to champion the Startup Gathering, which will be a key enabler to support startups and develop world class startup hubs in Waterford. These hubs will play a critical role in future jobs growth for the region and I encourage all startups to attend the upcoming Townhall meeting and get involved in the Startup Gathering Day on Tuesday 6th October.”
To help accelerate the goals of the Startup Gathering, the campaign is part of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation’s Action Plan for Jobs 2015. The Action Plan for Jobs is a whole of Government, multi-annual initiative which mobilises all Government Departments and Agencies to work towards the objective of supporting job creation. The development of the Plan is coordinated by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, and is monitored by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and the Department of the Taoiseach to ensure delivery.
Partners from across Waterford’s public and private sector are currently being sought and the Waterford Town Hall meeting will be a key opportunity for key influencers in Waterford to engage.