Today sees the launch of Invent, an annual competition run by Catalyst Inc and sponsored by Bank of Ireland UK, that is hoping to attract more than 100 entrepreneurs and inventors from across Northern Ireland.
The Invent competition offers the applicants from a range of sectors including Engineering, Agri Science, Life & Health, Enterprise software, Electronics and Creative media the opportunity to glean support, validate their product and gain valuable exposure to a network of business experts and influencers and potentially scoop part of the £33,000 prize fund.
Gavin Kennedy, Head of Business Banking, Northern Ireland at Bank of Ireland UK who sponsor the competition commented “Participants develop invaluable skills, connections and insights with hands on support from a phenomenal collaborative ecosystem. Invent is focused on helping to refine participant’s proposition and pitch, to enable them to take vital steps in seeking funding, going to market and scaling. It’s so much more than a competition and my advice would be that anyone even thinking about applying should just go for it.”
Previous winners are now successfully growing their companies and exporting innovative products and services across the globe. They include Jumpack who has created the world’s first portable skate ramp, See.Sense who recently signed a four-year deal with British Cycling to supply its ground-breaking bespoke bike safety light, and the 2018 overall winner, Gray’s Clip who has been able to use the financial win to help transform its insulated staple product to open up its global sales opportunities.
Invent is open to anyone who is a resident of Northern Ireland and offers an opportunity for enthusiastic and passionate innovators and entrepreneurs to be part of a unique competition.
Elaine Smyth, Interim Director of Connect said,“Invent provides a unique opportunity for early stage companies to showcase their ideas to the best in the business, and as the former winners have shown, the possibilities are endless. In Northern Ireland we have a rightful place in leading the world. We aren’t going to follow anybody. Through competitions such as Invent we can get back to leading the world.”
The highlight of the Invent competition will be the annual awards ceremony held on 10 October 2019, where around 700 business leaders, innovators and investors will gather to discover who will be crowned the overall winner. Closing date for entries is 15 March 2019. Apply here