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AIB Start-up Academy Summit tour kicks off with visit to The PorterShed
On Thursday 19th January, the PorterShed, Galway’s innovative, AIB backed, tech-hub hosted the first in a series of regional AIB Start-up Academy Summits. The Summits aim to bring together start-ups, business influencers and experts for an evening of learning and networking in an informal setting.
A full house, with guests coming from near and far, were treated to an outstanding evening, packed with great chat and invaluable advice. Local start-ups DoughBros Pizza and Independent Brewing Company were on hand to share their wonderful pizzas and beers with attendees, while 2016 AIB Start-up Academy runner-up Blackwater Distillery supplied the ever popular gin cocktails.
Hosted by Galway native Gráinne Seoige, the event kicked off with a panel discussion with some of the region’s leading entrepreneurs - Senator Pádraig Ó Céidigh, former owner of Aer Arann, Aoibheann McNamara, proprietor of ArdBia and co-founder of The Tweed Project, David Cunningham, CEO of Lean Start-up Summit and PorterShed board member and Padraic Joyce, founder of PJ Personnel and former Galway footballer. The panel discussed a wide range of business issues, with exceptional honesty and passion.
Two up-and-coming entrepreneurs, Emer Cooney of Hydrasure and Ciara Garvan of Workjuggle both delivered pitches to a judging panel of Evin Cusack, Head of AIB Galway, Mary Rodgers from PorterShed Innovation Community Manager, David Murphy of the Irish Times and John Breslin, NUI Galway and PorterShed Director.
The judges were faced with a difficult decision as both Emer and Ciara delivered excellent pitches. However, Emer Cooney of Hydrasure was selected as the winner, meaning that she now goes on to take part in the AIB Start-up Academy programme. Hydrasure is an award-winning start-up based in Co. Wicklow that provides smart stabling solutions to the equine & agricultural industries.
We now move on to Cork next week for the second AIB Start-up Academy Summit and if Galway is anything to go by, we’re in for a treat!
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