Energy Tech Start-Up Wins National Enterprise Award
Taoiseach presents National Enterprise Awards with Minister Mitchell O’ Connor and Minister Breen
South Dublin-based energy tech company, supported by Local Enterprise Offices, wins overall National Enterprise Awards at gala event in Dublin’s Mansion House
A start-up energy technology company from South Dublin has won the top award at this year’s National Enterprise Awards, which is organised by the Local Enterprise Offices every year to celebrate Ireland’s micro-enterprises (May 25th).
Set-up in 2015 and supported by Local Enterprise Office South Dublin, Acutrace has developed hardware and software that collects energy data in commercial buildings in the UK and Ireland. The company founders were presented with the National Enterprise Award by An Taoiseach, Mr. Enda Kenny T.D., the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Ms. Mary Mitchell O’ Connor T.D. and the Minister of State for Employment and Small Business, Pat Breen T.D. at a black-tie ceremony in the Mansion House.
Another Dublin company, Hope Beer in Fingal, won the ‘Best Start-Up’ award, Hexafly in Meath took the award for ‘Innovation’ and Monaghan Brothers Bar Furniture Manufacturers Ltd from County Mayo won the ‘Best Export’ category.
The Taoiseach, Mr. Enda Kenny T.D. speaking at the Awards said: “Congratulations to all the micro-enterprises and small businesses that are being honoured and celebrated through the National Enterprise Awards this year. The winners here tonight are examples of the confidence, ambition and creative talent at Ireland’s core.”
He added: “Local Enterprise Offices exist to help small Irish companies starting out. Since the LEOs were established in 2014, they have supported in excess of 11,000 new jobs. We will continue to deliver on that potential, continue to unearth the new generation of entrepreneurs and continue to promote a culture of self-help and self-start, across every county, parish and community in Ireland. Unemployment has dropped from 15.4% to 6.4% in recent times and LEO offices have played their part in this. Jobs are now growing in every region in the country.”
Minister Mitchell O’ Connor said: “I am delighted to join An Taoiseach, Minister Breen and the Local Enterprise Offices to celebrate the outstanding entrepreneurial achievements of Ireland’s micro and small businesses at the National Enterprise Awards. My priority as Minister is to ensure that an environment exists that nurtures entrepreneurship, innovation and job creation in every part of Ireland. The Local Enterprise Offices are a key element of that supportive environment and I would like to pay tribute to their vision and hard work.
“Heartiest congratulations to all of the winners tonight, and to all of the participants in this year’s competition who are an inspiration to others to consider entrepreneurship as a career”.
Minister Breen said: “National Enterprise Awards showcase Ireland’s most innovative micro-enterprises and small businesses, putting their stories of success into the national spotlight. As Minister for Small Business, I want to do everything I can to help nurture Ireland’s entrepreneurial potential and to help more people start-up and grow their own business across every region. I would like to join An Taoiseach and Minister Mitchell O’ Connor in adding my gratitude and congratulations to all of this year’s participants, finalists and winners, who are representing the 31 Local Enterprise Offices here in the Mansion House.”
Eight regional awards were also presented at the ceremony and the winners were:
- Acutrace in South Dublin (for the Dublin Region)
- Irish Host Family Ltd in Kerry (for the South West Region)
- Broghies Ireland in Kildare (for the Mid East Region)
- Pip and Pear Chilled Baby Food in Waterford (for the South Region)
- Goldfish.ie in Wicklow (for the South East Region)
- Studyclix in Sligo (for the North West Region)
- Aphix Software Ltd in Louth (for the North East Region)
- 9th Impact in Galway City (for the West Region)
Speaking at the awards ceremony, Sheelagh Daly, Chair of the Network of the Local Enterprise Offices said: “Acutrace started-up just two years ago and already the company is making its mark on the international energy management sector, having worked on more than 50 projects for companies like Google, Twitter and IBM. Micro-enterprises like Acutrace, which make up more than 90% of all businesses in Ireland, are powering the national economy with the Local Enterprise Offices as their ‘first-stop-shop’ for accessing enterprise supports. The National Enterprise Awards are a celebration of courage, vision and success behind Ireland’s micro-enterprises .”
Oisin Geoghegan, Chair of the National Enterprise Awards’ organising committee, delivered the closing address at this evening’s ceremony, confirming that the award winners share a €40,000 prize fund from the Local Enterprise Offices, to help fund expansion and further growth.
The judges this year were Michael Hanley (former Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Cork North and West), Barry Egan (Regional Director with Enterprise Ireland) and Anne Cusack (entrepreneur and founder of Critical Healthcare in Westmeath, a medical emergency product supplier).
Previous winners of the National Enterprise Awards have included Applied Concepts in Offaly, Agrispread in Mayo, Innovate in Wexford and Irish Yoghurts in West Cork.
The full list of results and details about the supports available to micro-enterprises and start-ups through the network of Local Enterprise Offices can be found at www.localenterprise.ie.