Social Network 'Eventwolf' Scoops €10,000 Top Prize Plus Coveted Mentoring Programme at the 2009 Enterprise Ireland Student Enterprise Awards
Sponsors Enterprise Ireland, Invest Northern Ireland and Cruickshank Intellectual Property Attorneys announced today (Wednesday 10 June 2009) that student Allan Dixon from Dublin City University (DCU) has been awarded the prestigious top prize at the 2009 Enterprise Ireland Student Enterprise Awards, Ireland's biggest third level business awards. The award was made today at a ceremony in the University of Ulster, Coleraine.
Allan Dixon beat off stiff competition from hundreds of third level students across Ireland with his business proposal 'Eventwolf' scooping the coveted €10,000 top prize and title of 'College Entrepreneur of The Year'. Eventwolf is a unique new online social network that takes the idea of YouTube but replaces videos with limitless types of events located on Google's rich interactive maps.
This year marks the 26th anniversary of the Enterprise Ireland Student Enterprise Awards, an all island competition that offers third level student teams from the island of Ireland the chance to explore business ideas and realise their entrepreneurial ambitions. It is the largest and most prestigious third-level student enterprise competition, boasting an unrivalled prize fund totalling €50,000 cash.
As well as the overall College Entrepreneur of the Year, awards were also given in categories including: Most Technologically Innovative Idea, Export Capability, Professionalism of Business Approach and Solving Problems for Industry.
Speaking about the significance of the awards Richard Murphy, Head of Regional Development, Enterprise Ireland said:
"The Enterprise Ireland Student Enterprise Awards play a vital role in promoting and harnessing the research, innovation and entrepreneurial talent of our third level students. They are a real opportunity for students to experience both the challenge and the excitement of developing a business idea, and seeing that entrepreneurship can be a valuable and rewarding future career option. These young people are our successful entrepreneurs of the future, and I would strongly encourage students from all disciplines, with the ambition and drive to establish their own businesses, to take part. The success and long term strength of Ireland's economy is strongly reliant on the establishment and growth of Irish-owned companies with the potential to become thriving international businesses. The 2009 Student Enterprise Awards competition can act as an important springboard for Ireland's future entrepreneurs and business leaders and Enterprise Ireland is proud to play a part in promoting and encouraging this spirit of entrepreneurship."
Commenting after the awards announcement, Sharon Polson of Invest NI's Entrepreneurship Development team, said:
"The participants in this year's competition have demonstrated that local students are capable of generating world-class and commercially viable business ideas across a range of industry sectors. Our economy can benefit when these high quality innovations are combined with the entrepreneurial flair of the participants to achieve export success. Invest NI is firmly committed to putting support systems in place to help young entrepreneurs successfully bring their products and services to market."
Speaking at the Awards Donal O'Connor, Managing Partner, Cruickshank Intellectual Property Attorneys said:
"Cruickshank are delighted to be co-sponsor of Enterprise Ireland Student Enterprise Awards, in its 26th year. Recent studies have shown that intangible assets and specifically intellectual property have increased as a percentage of the market value of companies over the past decade from less than 20% to 80%. That this is happening is of considerable advantage to any economy which concentrates on innovation and the generation of intellectual property, specifically patentable inventions. We must do everything to foster innovation and enterprise and the logical place to start is in our schools and third level institutions. We in Cruickshanks are shortly launching a programme with third level institutions to publicise the commercial advantages that can arise from the generation of Intellectual Property."
Entrepreneur Ian Pennick of The Streat Franchise is the entrepreneurial expert on the 2009 judging panel. The competition finalists were put through their paces over the past few days and were given the opportunity to impress Ian with their own business acumen. Best described as a serial entrepreneur, Ian has been involved in the development of several market leading retail and retail technology businesses and as an investor and mentor to many young entrepreneurial companies.
Speaking at the awards ceremony, Ian said: "It's a great honour to be asked to judge at these awards. I am convinced that amongst these entrants are some real business success stories and this is a great platform and a superb opportunity for these new entrepreneurs to showcase their hard work. The island's third level institutions have a lot to be proud of. The next 10 years will be less about huge corporations and much more about real entrepreneurism and our future will be determined by business ideas like these to pull us out of our current economic gloom. I am sure that amongst these entrants are some really bright shining stars for our future. "
For further information please contact:
|Eileen Banks, Press Officer, Enterprise Ireland|
Tel: +353 1 7272805 or 087 2445814
Profile of Winning Team - 'Eventwolf' - College Entrepreneur of the Year 2009
Eventwolf - Dublin City University - (DCU) - Allan Dixon
This product is a unique new online social network that takes the idea of YouTube but replaces videos with limitless types of events located on Google's rich interactive maps. Events will be positions on an interactive map such as music gigs, festivals, house parties, birthdays, an array of sporting events, athletic, ball, motor, extreme, water, meet-ups, food, travel, comedy etc, an endless list of possibilities. Users that register will have a choice on their profile based on whether they are a member of the public or if they would like to list events as an author.
Award details by category
- Most Technologically Innovative Idea Award: sponsored by Cruickshank Intellectual Property Attorneys - €7,500
'Vision RE', Cork Institute of Technology (CIT)
- Export Capability Award - €7,500
'G-One Trading', University College Cork (UCC)
- Solving Problems for Industry Award - €7,500
'Nebulaer', Cork Institute of Technology (CIT)
- Professionalism of Business Approach Award - €7,500
'In Sav', Queens University Belfast
- Awards of Merit
'Baby Milk Maker', University of Ulster, 'Rigi Jig', CIT, and 'Neonatal EEG', UCC were presented with awards of merit worth €2,500.
- A prize of €2,500 was awarded to Sean F O'Leary of the Mechanical Engineering Department CIT as the academic institution with the best entries.
- The competition is open to all full-time undergraduate and post graduate students attending any third level educational institution on the island of Ireland.
- The competition offers a cash prize fund of €50,000. Enterprise Ireland will offer mentorship and guidance to all finalists to develop the commercial viability of their concepts. Cruickshank Intellectual Property Attorneys are offering a consultancy service to the value of up to €20,000 for all winners to aid the students to patent and protect the intellectual property arising from their projects.