Longford’s Best Young Entrepreneurs for 2019 were revealed at an awards ceremony hosted by Local Enterprise Office Longford last Tuesday week in the Longford Golf Club.
As part of a nationwide search launched by Ministers Heather Humphreys and Pat Breen to find Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneurs (IBYE), the six were chosen from 18 local finalists and will share a €50,000 investment fund. IBYE, now in its fifth year, is a nationwide young enterprise initiative to help 18 to 35-year-olds with an innovative business idea, new start-up or established business.
The ‘Best New Idea’ category, with a €7,000 investment fund, was won by Aisling Lyons aged 27, founder of Soul Recovery.
Soul Recovery is a physiotherapy practice, with advanced recovery and rehab facilities. The runner-up award and €3,000 investment fund went to Raymond Dooley aged 32, of Next Generation Farm Safety, a training company specialising in educational farm safety awareness training for post primary school students.
The winner of the ‘Best Start-Up Business’ category and the €15,000 investment fund was Aine O’Reilly, aged 24, founder of Zobi in Aughnacliffe. Zobi is a Fashion Design Consultancy and sewing academy that works with designers on the production of their garment designs.
The runner-up in this category, collecting a €5,000 investment fund, was Robert Higgins aged 29, of Harp Media in Granard.
Harp Media is a multi-discipline film production company that develop films and TV series for general audiences, music videos for established and emerging artists, as well as creative and corporate videos for brands and companies.
Meanwhile, the title of ‘Best Established Business’, with an investment fund of €15,000, went to Micheal Savage, aged 30, founder of Lir Analytical Ltd. Lir Analytical Ltd specialise in the creation of chemically designed solutions that are of real interest to food producers and food processors in helping eradicate harmful bacteria affecting food chain production facilities.
The runner-up in this category, scooping a €5,000 investment fund, was Niall Mimnagh aged 30, of Mimergy Ltd in Longford.
Mimergy Ltd use innovative technology to convert waste tyres and other rubber products into clean fuels and chemicals with greater sustainability than other technologies relying on crude oil.
Micheal Savage of Lir Analytical Ltd was also awarded the title of ‘Best Young Entrepreneur’ for county Longford.
Michael Nevin, Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Longford said: “As our winners clearly demonstrate, young entrepreneurship is thriving here in Longford. IBYE is about discovering local potential and nurturing that talent. In 2019, Local Enterprise Office Longford supported 32 young entrepreneurs through the IBYE competition and over 130 young entrepreneurs in total, since the competition began in 2014. We want to build on that success by supporting Longford’s young entrepreneurs today and into the future.”
The county winners progress to the regional finals, which take place on Thursday, June 6. In all, 24 national finalists will be selected at regional finals across the country to compete for the overall title of 'Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur'.
At the IBYE national final on Sunday, September 15, which takes place at Google’s European Headquarters in Dublin, a €100,000 investment fund will be awarded to winners.
PICTURES: Shelley Corcoran