Elite Entrepreneurs Connecting with Northern Ireland’s Most Promising Innovators

Added Thursday, June 1 2017

INVENT 2017 Mentor Day brings together the twelve finalists with a group of experienced Entrepreneurs to help them fine tune their business models.

The 12 finalists competing in the prestigious Invent Awards from Connect at Catalyst Inc, are now gearing up for the final hurdle of the competition after a mentor day in Belfast featuring some of our brightest entrepreneurial talent.

Sponsored and hosted by leading law firm Arthur Cox, the event, which took place on 31st May, involved more than 20 of the entrepreneurs and investors involved in the Connect programmes.

Lynsey Mallon, Partner at Arthur Cox Corporate and Commercial Department, commented, “Arthur Cox is proud of its long-standing links with Catalyst Inc and the innovative companies that it supports.  We are delighted to sponsor the Invent Mentor Day but also, and much more importantly, to offer legal support and input to the participants. Naturally, inventors are focused on creating and developing new ideas but they also need to be business-savvy in order to realise their vision. Gaining the right advice at this stage can be critical to a business’s success.”

Specialist Arthur Cox solicitors were on hand to provide each inventor with advice on protecting their unique intellectual property, both for the benefit of the inventor and any potential investors, and also how to attract and secure much needed funding in order to grow and develop their ideas into businesses.

This year the Invent 2017 competition received a record number of entries with over 140 applicants entering across 6 categories – Agri-Science, Engineering, Life & Health, Electronics, Enterprise Software and Creative Media & Consumer Internet. 

Connect Director, Steve Orr, explained ‘Mentor day is a critical component of the Invent competition. We have an incredible talent pool and we continue to leverage our networks to connect our most experienced people with our most promising, to accelerate their success’.

Engineering category finalist Fiona Bennington has developed Hug, a wraparound, wearable heat pack designed to help soothe lower back or abdominal pain, and adjusts to different waist sizes.  The unique design allows Hug to be worn directly against the skin offering comfort that is discreet and practical. Speaking after taking part in the Mentor Day, Fiona said ‘today has given me a unique opportunity to speak and engage with experienced entrepreneurs. Their invaluable advice has helped me to identify how to further develop and advance the business aspect of my innovation’

The climax of the competition will be the Invent Awards, sponsored by Bank of Ireland UK, at the Belfast Waterfront on Thursday 5th October 2017. More than 600 investors, entrepreneurs, executives and student innovators will gather to hear the announcement of the winners. 

Tickets are on sale now at www.invent2017.co 

Fiona Bennington showing her innovation 'Hug' to Lynsey Mallon from Sponsor Arthur Cox