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The European Commission has released evaluation results showing that five Enterprise Ireland-backed companies have been recommended for more than €20.5m in funding from the first final-stage European Innovation Council (EIC) Accelerator call under Horizon Europe, the EU’s key funding programme for research and innovation.
The EIC Accelerator supports start-ups and SMEs to develop and scale up game-changing innovations. More than 2,700 applications were submitted to the first stage evaluation up to July and this level of interest demonstrates the popularity and competitiveness of the programme.
A total of 65 projects across Europe and Horizon Europe received recommendations for more than €360m in funding. The five successful Enterprise Ireland client companies are AVeta Medical, Akara Robotics, CrannMED, Contego Sports and ProVerum. Ireland ranks fourth in terms of the number of companies recommended for funding alongside Denmark and after France, Germany and the Netherlands.
The success of these predominantly healthcare start-ups reflects the strength and innovativeness of this sector in Ireland according to Garrett Murray, National Director for Horizon Europe at Enterprise Ireland: “This announcement is a great success for Ireland and is testament to the capability and talent within the Irish innovation and commercialisation system and the vibrancy and international competitiveness of the Irish start-up community. In line with Enterprise Ireland’s strategy, this funding will help our clients to build on their existing capabilities, scale and create jobs.
“This is the first call under the EIC Accelerator in Horizon Europe. At Enterprise Ireland we are looking to work with innovative start-ups and SMEs across all sectors to build on this success in future EIC funding calls and across the wider Horizon Europe programme”.
Following the announcement, Liam Farrissey, CEO at CrannMed said: “We are delighted to receive this EIC grant and equity funding. It will enable our team to accelerate efforts to bring this exciting new therapy to patients suffering with knee Osteoarthritis. The combination of grant and equity funding in this award is particularly meaningful for CrannMed as it not only allows us to complete the development of the product but will also be used to support the scale up we need for the generation of our first sales. Enterprise Ireland played an important role in guiding us through the new and evolving EIC process, without their support and experience we would not have been successful.”
Following the announcement, Paula Newell, CEO and Founder at AVeta said: “We are delighted that the EIC Accelerator funding has acknowledged our disruptive and innovative woman’s health medical device. This funding will bring the AVeta device a step closer to providing a much-wanted hormone-free, safe solution to millions of women suffering from vaginal atrophy. These women currently have no treatment option and are seeking an alternative solution. We would like to thank Enterprise Ireland, NUIG and the Bio-Innovate programme for their continued support. We are really excited about growing an innovative Irish company in the Femtech space and this funding gives us a fantastic boost in making this happen.
“It is so apt that AVeta Medical receives this European funding in the month of October, which is World Menopause, and Women’s Health Awareness month. We hope that AVeta Medical will play a significant role increasing awareness about women’s health issues in Europe and internationally”.