41 pitches later, participants go their 3 post-its to go vote. I gave one of my vote to 60-minute a delivery service which looks to reduce carbon footprint in logistics, and a second vote to Maternal Care, a one-stop shop and information center for expectant and new mothers.
The last vote was meant to go to Hello Granny, a smart-house app that allows the elderly connect to their children an grand-children through audio messages placed strategically like ‘Good morning Granny‘ for wake-up alarm and ‘Welcome home Granny’ on returning from the market. Sadly I couldn’t find the idea owner and so my vote went to Color Me Happy which went on to make the final list.
Here are the 9 ideas to be developed during the Startup Weekend in Limerick:
1. Color Me Happy is tinder for hairstyles where you can see what looks good on you and then get connected to a hairstylist.
2. May Borrow allows users find and borrow tools like can-openers, lawn mower, etc. from neighbors.
3. Love Guru makes you a match maker in a tinder-type environment, letting you win points and gain credibility for successful matches.
4. Big Red Button wants to disrupt pension by allowing customers save money via premium SMS, coupons and vouchers.
5. Beer Friends is a social network connect for people with similar interests to arrange meetups and themed events.
6. WeTravel wants to enable people travel in groups to drive down prices.
For the first time ever, Startup Weekend Limerick had 3 kids under the age of 10 pitch ideas and then went ahead to use all of their cuteness and creativity to hustle votes to make it into top 9. They include:
7. The Sit Hair Chair is a machine that allows you wash you hair while riding a motor chair.
8. Stick-Shirts wants to fix return in fashion retail with smart stickers.
9. The Listening Watch allows kids record moods via emojis on smartwatch with an option to share with teachers and parents.
No doubt the last 3 ideas show how creative and entrepreneurial kids can be and it is even more impressive to see older folks rally around them to work with them over the next 54 hours to bring those ideas as well as the remaining six ideas to life.
Startup Weekend Limerick like all of its other sister events is a completely non-profit event only made possible by the hard work of a small, voluntary organising team.
Besides the hardwork, these events need financial support to cover food, clothing and printing costs and without the kind help of our generous sponsors, Startup Weekend simply wouldn’t be possible.
In this post I want to thank Bank of Ireland and Nexus Innovation Centre for their very kind support.
Bank of Ireland
A distinguishing feature to Bank of Ireland’s engagement with startups is through a multiplicity of events including; mentorship programmes, meet-ups, weekends and hackathons, in addition to its sponsorship of key initiatives such as Start Up Weekend Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Galway and the inaugural Start Up Ireland event which took place from October 5th to 10th.
Their support goes much further than finance as Pat Carroll, community manager at the Bank lent his hand in preparations and Tracy Keogh of BOI Galway will be facilitating.
They were even kind enough to lend us the expertise of Sean Byerly, Neville Burke and the legendary Liam Sheedy who takes to the hot-seat as judge, jury and executioner on Sunday evening.
I caught up with Pat Carroll just before this post was written and asked him Why Bank of Ireland likes to support Startup Weekend?‘Just as Startup Weekends are supported globally by Google for Entrepreneurs, we are delighted to be the main sponsor for Startup Weekends in Limerick and around Ireland, as we say, ‘for small steps, for big steps, for life’.
Nexus Innovation Centre
The Nexus Innovation Centre, UL forms the main hub of Startup Weekend. This contemporary venue with functional break-out areas, bean bags and bright open work-spaces is ideal for what we wanted to achieve for Startup Weekend Limerick.
Nexus continues to develop member-focused services that enable startups to accelerate their development in a highly connected and open environment. Leveraging knowledge, research and experience in the areas of entrepreneurship, technology and management.
Centre Manager Gert O’Rourke who has played a pivotal role as organizer for Startup Weekend Limerick said “Nexus are delighted to sponsor startup weekend Limerick. It’s a whirlwind weekend of opportunity, networking, community, hard work and constructive criticism. A perfect fit with Nexus and its objectives”
We were also very fortunate to have Simone Power lend a hand to ensure the small details were adhered to ensure that this weekend will have all the bells and whistles.
As well as venue sponsorship, Nexus have been very kind financially covering costs such as clothing, cleaning and security.
Here is a video from Simone Power, Administrator at Nexus Innovation Centre.
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So…We’re changing dates.
Not to next Spring or next summer, Just until November 20th so no need to despair.
What am I going to do with all this extra spare time?
No worries, The Startup Gathering kicks off on October 5th and there are a host of events around the Treaty to keep even the most avid and needy Startup Junkie from feeling the withdrawals. 🙂
The date also aligns with our 1 year anniversary so we said, Why not remove the shackles and make it a Startup Weekend Birthday Bonanza?..
That’s right, one year along an epic road of building startups and enhancing relationships right across the MidWest and we couldn’t be more proud of that.
What changes? Well nothing. All the awesome mentors and judges have just been confirmed for the new dates, the venue is still the University of Limerick, the focal point of which is the Nexus Innovation Centre.
What will I do if I have already booked my ticket?
No biggy…Your ticket will either be refunded or we will issue you with a new ticket. We will email all participants in the coming days with information.
Thank you to everyone for your continued support of Startup Weekend and looking forward to a bigger and even better event on November 20th.
From Peter, Shane and the Startup Weekend Limerick Team.
We are back and this time it is personal 🙂
We are launching Limericks third ever Startup Weekend, This October 2nd-October 4th at the Nexus Innovation Centre and the CSIS Building in the University of Limerick. On the back of two previous and highly successful startup weekends in Limerick. October is huge for Limerick, Innovate Limerick are running the first ever International Cluster Conference in Ireland, we have Startup Weekend and this is followed by The Startup Gathering week and Limerick Enterprise week. We had to run a Startup Weekend. 11-12 days straight of Startupppy events on in Limerick, this must be some kind of record!!!
What is a Startup Weekend?
“Startup Weekend is fundamentally disrupting the way the world is approaching entrepreneurial education” – Startup Weekend
“Startup Weekends are 54-hour events designed to provide experiential education for technical and non-technical entrepreneurs. The weekend events are centered on action, innovation, and education. Beginning with Friday night pitches and continuing through testing, business model development, and basic prototype creation, Startup Weekends culminate in Sunday night Pitch competition to a panel of potential investors and local entrepreneurs”
It is an electric experience of idea generation, validation and testing. Teams are pushed hard by each other, there are some really quality mentors there to guide and assist you… After all you are building a startup idea in just 54hrs. Minimal Viable Product is key!! Well that and getting to know Ed Fidgeon Kavanagh really early (That is a free Tip)
Here is a little Video: Startup Weekend Trailer
Who is it for?
Startup weekend is for anybody of any age who is interested in the Startup world, maybe you’re interested in testing an idea or maybe you just want to have an incredible experience while meeting really ambitious, cool and creative people. So we are calling out Product Designers, Developers, Marketers, Professionals, Students, Innovators to get involved. We have had solicitors, high ranking Multi-National staff and even professional rugby players involved before. Spread the word… That is your job (After you sign up of course 🙂
Why should you attend?
Outside of the free T-shirts, Advice, Food and Drink for the weekend, the new relationships you build and the chance to build a startup in 54hrs… it being a really cool experience with truly amazing people. It is a huge opportunity to test an idea and/or be involved in a team. The weekend is electric, the ideas are incredible and it really is a weekend you won’t forget.
What Startup Weekend can do for you?
This is an opportunity to not only meet new people, it is a real chance to challenge yourself and push social norms!! Startup Weekend gives you a very different way of thinking and this gets this new way of thinking embedded in your thoughts process really quickly. The place will be buzzing and so will you introverts and extroverts alike. I’ve personally seen people become very different after startup weekends. I’ll put it another don’t be shocked if for a couple of weeks after – the day job just isn’t enough.
How can you help?
By assisting us in spreading the word. We want to have a huge audience on the Sunday night for the pitch competition. We’re talking 200-300 people. That is what these teams deserve and that is what we will deliver with your help. So…. Get this out to Developers/Programmers, Media/Press, SMEs, Startups, Multi-Nationals, Business People, Lecturers and Students that you know and help us run the best Startup Weekend we possibly can.
If you have any questions Tweet us on @SWLimerick or Email on firstname.lastname@example.org
A Rookies Perspective
When I was asked to co-organise a Startup Weekend, I didn’t even know what a Startup Weekend was? 6 weeks later and I am much wiser about the raw excitement, energy and hard-work involved in an event like this. To be honest, I’m sorry I won’t get the chance to participate.
It has been a whirlwind experience and I can honestly say I am excited and energised heading down the final straight before the event climax on April 12th.
The support of the business community has been amazing. Lead sponsors Bank of Ireland have been very generous but we can’t forget the nuts and bolts of the local economy, companies like Canteen Asian Fusion, Tadhg Kearney jewellers, TaxAssist, Martina Murphy solicitors and so many more have all lent a generous hand to ensure the successful execution of this event.
Critical Success factors:
Beyond getting sponsorship there are 2 key factors to running a successful Startup Weekend.
Building a team
The team here at Startup Weekend Limerick includes veteran organisers Shane McCarthy and Stephan Dunworth and ex -participants Kieran Normoyle, Maree Lanigan and Mark Carey. We gained valuable insight from the former 3 on their experience attending the last Startup Weekend Limerick and armed with this knowledge, we are going to organise an event that has all the bells, whistles, colour and excitement to create a strong legacy for the future.
One key point that was highlighted from early meetings was the need to keep non-participants engaged. The solution is to create a prize pool for ‘Guests who Invest’. The investment won’t involve any cash sum, just a vote of confidence in the budding entrepreneur’s ideas.
At the end of the weekend, the ‘investors’ will be welcomed back for the judges decision where Startup Weekend winner 2015 will be crowned. Should the ‘investor’s’ team win, they will receive one of the many awesome prizes we have lined up, including a signed Munster jersey and several hotel vouchers from the Clarion Hotel Limerick to the picturesque Lakeside Hotel in Killaloe.
Getting people pumped up
With the team selected, it was time to summon the masses, we have been on the phone and marching on the ground to get the community excited about Startup Weekend. We have spoken to all the leading MNCs (multi-national corporations) in the local area including Dell, Vistakon and Johnson & Johnson to ensure we have the right balance of youth and experience. The team also wanted to attract complimentary skill-sets to ensure stronger business development from ideation right through to pitching on the Sunday.
Students have certainly heralded the strongest response, when we presented to class groups in LIT and UL, their excitement was contagious. The notion that these future change-makers could themselves start a business in just 3 days had audiences salivating. Many were eager to learn more and keen to ask questions while other were looking to sign up immediately!
Last call for budding entrepreneurs
With little over a week to go, the countdown is on to find the Limerick’s best Startup idea. We are very close to capacity so anyone who has a half baked business idea or a crazy concept that just might change the world, sign up here.
We all know that people do not participate at a Startup Weekend for the prizes, but at the end of the day after a grueling 54 hours of madness it is nice to be rewarded for your efforts. This year we have some pretty cool prizes for successful teams.
The team with the best fit for EI New Frontiers will have the opportunity to present to the New Frontiers panel in June along with coaching and mentoring from the LIT EI New Frontiers team based at the Hartnett Centre in preparation for the interview.
The New Frontiers Programme, which is the Enterprise Ireland national entrepreneur development programme, can provide you with help and support to accelerate your business development and to equip you with the skills and contacts that you need to successfully start and grow your company including Business Training, Mentoring from experienced business advisers and practitioners, Office space, €15,000 scholarship to cover full-time participation in the six-month course, Networking opportunities with other entrepreneurs and business development agencies, Introductions to seed and early-stage capital investment networks and access to the LIT ELF Fund for funding up to €25,000, Access to entrepreneurship best practice – both national and international, Peer group learning from participants in the region and across the country, Access to the expertise in Enterprise Ireland, Expertise from LIT and UL and more. The Programme’s primary purpose is to accelerate the development of sustainable new businesses that have strong employment and growth potential (particularly international growth) and contribute to job creation and economic activity in the region. www.newfrontiers.ie
The Web Summit has been described as “the best technology conference on the planet”. Dubbed “Europes most global tech event”, the Web Summit hosts the biggest Fortune 500 companies to the smallest and most exciting startups.
Technology is changing the world faster and further than at any point in human history. The Summit brings those responsible for that change together because they think it’s important to understand what that change means for our businesses and societies.
The lovely folks at the Web Summit have been kind enough to give us two tickets with a combined value of over €3,000. These tickets will go to the winning team. The Summit is a fantastic opportunity to see some of the greatest minds on the planet speak of successes, failures, opportunities and the ever changing world of technology. One thing that is for sure is that whoever wins these tickets is in for a real treat November 3-5th at the RDS.
The Nexus Innovation centre located on Campus at the beaufifully pituresque University of Limerick has kindly offered 3 months hot desk space for the winning team. The nexus is a fantastic location to grow a business, surround yourself with like minded people and receive the very best advice on how to scale a business both nationally and internationally. Not only that but being on campus at the University of Limerick, there is a vast range of resources available right on your doorstep, which can be utilised with a good attitude and plenty of hustle.
On top of this, there will also be 3X1 month free hot desk space for three teams that wish to persue their business. Fostering growth and innovation is what we are trying to do here at Startup Weekend Limerick and these prizes certainly represent a huge opportunity for participants.
We just cannot wait to see who grabs the ball and runs with it.
P.s We will also have a Munster jersey signed by the whole Munster team to give away as a spot prize during the weekend. HEAVE!!!!!!
After a hugely successful debut back in November of 2014, Startup Weekend Limerick is back. Taking place from April 10th-12th once again on campus at the University of Limerick, in the fantastic Nexus Innovation Centre. Startup Weekend Limerick will bring together designers, developers, marketers, entrepreneurs and dreamers for an a unique experience the likes of which has never been seen in the Treaty county before November last.
The event in November was one full of high energy, commitment, innovative concepts, hustle, bright ideas and new friendships. The ripple effect has been clear for all to see. A core group of “Startup Weekender’s” have emerged to build a strong, youthful network. They hold a common bond in that they all took part in this fantastic weekend and they all share a common goal of wanting to solve problems with innovative business ideas. We hope with the upcoming weekend we can help build upon this.
The startup and entrepreneurial ecosystem in Limerick is getting stronger with each passing day. Events like Startup Weekend, WASUP & 3D Camp are fantastic to help nurture the talent and innovation. The more of these types of events we have in this great City of ours the better. Only positive things can come of this.
Behind us volunteers, who give up our time to run these events, are businesses and organisations who, like us, understand the impact that these events can have in our region. They dig deep and put their hands in their pockets so some of our best and brightest can come together for a no talk, all action, fast paced weekend, designed for those who want to leave their mark on the world.
The main sponsor for all the Startup Weekend’s throughout Ireland is Bank of Ireland. Their vision and support for Irish Startups is second to none and without them these weekends would not be possible. Their generosity has meant that literally 100’s of Ireland’s best and brightest have been able to come together to form teams, validate ideas, grow their networks, receive expert mentorship and build startups. Sponsoring Startup Weekend is only the tip of the iceberg for Bank of Ireland and the Startup Community. They realise the importance indigenous business has to play in our recovery and have set up equity funds to provide startups with the support they need. The Start-Up and Emerging Sectors Equity Fund has been created for innovative and energetic young enterprises. Managed by Delta Partners on behalf of Bank of Ireland, their €17m fund has been created to support Irish start-up or early stage businesses.
The Nexus Innovation centre is regarded by many as Limerick’s premier incubation centre and have been supporters of Limerick’s Startup Weekend since the word go. It is here that Startup Weekend participants will spend 54 hours working on ideas from April 10th – 12th. Situated on campus in the heart of the beautiful University of Limerick the Nexus centre is home to some of Limericks hottest up and coming startup companies.
The centre is a purpose built environment that combines: individual offices, shared desk space, collaborative work spaces, a startup studio, small intimate meeting rooms, an impressive boardroom, high specification bio-labs and a reconfigurable lobby/exhibition space. Nexus, however, is about so much more than space, it’s about community! Nexus continues to develop member-focused services that enable startups to accelerate their development in a highly connected and open environment. Leveraging knowledge, research and experience in the areas of entrepreneurship, technology and management.
Around Noon, a sandwich and snack provider from Newry in County Down are back for a second round of providing hungry Startup Weekend participants with delicious sandwiches, wraps and salad pots for the duration of the weekend. Their Scribbles range went down an absolute treat back in November and participants are in for plenty of tasty delights once again. Their CEO Gareth Chambers and his wife Laura attended Startup Weekend back in November and provided invaluable advice and mentorship to the teams.
What started as a small business 25 years ago, set up by Gareth’s mother has grown into one of the most successful food companies in Northern Ireland. Their message is “Look after the world, we know there is only 1 world so we do everything we can to protect it”. With plans to expand to the UK in the near future, we only expect great success from Gareth, Laura and all the team.
When we contacted Roy Finucane of TaxAssist Limerick about supporting Startup Weekend Limerick he really did not need much persuasion. Understanding the benefits that events like startup weekend will bring to Limerick, Roy was only too happy to help out in any way possible. TaxAssist is a perfect partner as they specialise in startups, small businesses, sole traders, limited companies & partnerships.
TaxAssist Accountants in Limerick City provide a wide range of accountancy services including tax returns, payroll and bookkeeping. They are a part of the largest network of accountants who offer a huge range of experience and expertise to small businesses right across the Republic of Ireland.
Martina Murphy is a Limerick woman who studied Law at both the University of Limerick and the Law society of Ireland. An experienced litigation lawyer and principal of www.martinamurphy.ie, Martina is a firm supporter of local initiatives in Limerick and has kindly supported the Startup Weekend movement.
Martina’s past and present clients include companies who sought advice on drafting commerical agreements, franchise agreements, trade mark and licensing matters, lease agreements, commercial injunctions and technology law. She is especially interested in clients who are starting their own business and require advice on setting up companies, tax related matters, trademark or other regulatory matters. Startups at the weekend can expect some quality advice from Martina.
Tadhg Kearney has been at the heart of the Limerick business landscape for over 30 years. His jewellery offerings have dazzled thousands and his unrivalled focus on customer service has contributed to a huge list of loyal brand advocates. A bigger yet not well known part of his business is the bespoke jewellery he handcrafts for his clients. He works one-on-one to create a piece that is truly unique and intimately reflects the client’s personality.
His passion and drive as a jeweller has translated into a civic duty to ‘get the community working in Limerick’. He is committed to helping the local business ecosystem in Limerick as he believes that ’employment and education are key contributors to a flourishing society’. Proof of this commitment to the education and commercial ecosystem are the positions, he has held at Limerick Chamber of Commerce, University of Limerick and Plassey Campus Centre.
When the team at Startup Limerick approached him about supporting the event, he was very willing to lend his hand in support of a ‘key driver for economic and social improvement’.
To all our supporters and sponsors I would like to say a huge THANK YOU from myself, the organising team and all the participants. Without your generosity, support and belief in what we are trying to achieve, Startup Weekend Limerick would not be taking place. Because of you, our best and brightest minds both yound and old will have the opportunity to achieve something so very special. Take a business idea from concept to reality in just 54 hours. One thing is for sure, because of Bank of Ireland, Around Noon, The Nexus Innovation Centre, Martina Murphy, Tadhg Kearney Jewellers and TaxAssist Limerick, Startup Weekend Limerick is going to be one hell of an event!
Startup Weekend Limerick April 10th – 12th, 2015
“Startup Weekend is fundamentally disrupting the way the world is approaching entrepreneurial education” – Startup Weekend
“Startup Weekends are 54-hour events designed to provide superior experiential education for technical and non-technical entrepreneurs. The weekend events are centered on action, innovation, and education. Beginning with Friday night pitches and continuing through testing, business model development, and basic prototype creation, Startup Weekends culminate in Sunday night Pitch competition to a panel of potential investors and local entrepreneurs”
Startup Weekends to me are an opportunity to examine that idea you have had for a while, to test yourself in a fast paced problem solving environment and it as a way to grow a fantastic like-minded network. I’ve had the pleasure of attending as a guest and organising a startup weekend, this is my second but I feel the real value is in attending as a participant, being on the battlefield, I’m envious – this is something I have yet to do.
Pitching your idea, leading a team or being part of a team is an unbelievable opportunity that most people will never experience, this is your chance… take it.
Limericks Startup Weekend will be a fast moving 54hrs, problem solving will essential as will hustling, teamwork and creativity. The weekend will test you, it is energise you and it will drain you mentally yet I can say from the bottom of my heart, it will be one of the most valuable experiences of your life. I would say the event and weekend become addictive.
The format is built around building a startup, around formulating a team and trusting others. People come from far and wide, across various industries to participate and get mentoring from some of the top Entrepreneurs, Developers and Designers locally to help structure and validate their idea. At Startup Limerick we are lucky to have some fantastic mentors involved like Ed Kavanagh, Gillian Barry, David Quaid and Ronan Skehill to name but a few.
Pitching your idea with clarity and finding the right team in the Friday night is essential and this is where Hustling comes in :). Hustle, Hustle and Hustle all weekend long.
Be confident is your approach, plan the key segments to validate at an early stage while understanding how you will do this and set down roles and responsibilities within your team. Your team and how each member manages each other will differentiate who the real big winners are.
Startup Weekend hits Limerick November 21st to 23rd. It will be epic!
So it has finally arrived in Limerick. Famous across the world…. StartupWeekend is here this November. We could not be happier. One of only 4 cities participating in Ireland. Yes Limerick is one of them!! We are very proud and delighted to be able to be part of this “Global Startup Battle”. Limericks startup scene is picking up major traction over the last 18 Months… More young people are involved learning from experienced entrepreneurs, more vibrant events are taking place and this is an incredible opportunity for anyone out there interested in the startup world.
WHO IS IT FOR?
Anyone interested in Startups is the short answer!!
If you have an interesting idea or concept, If you have a solution or a vision, If you’re an innovator… will I keep going? 🙂 Maybe you want to learn the key aspects of building a startup. You may just want to assist on a team, validate your idea, mentor some of Limericks upcoming stars or just hang around with innovative like minded people – THIS IS FOR YOU!!! I REPEAT – THIS IS FOR YOU!! This is for all of us really. Entrepreneurs, Students, Lecturers, Developers and Designers alike. This is an amazing opportunity to grow, to learn and to build together.
Having an event like this in Limerick is key to the growth of our local startup scene, essential for local incubation centres and will go along way to stopping brain drain of some of our finest talent- This is where startup funnels are created, relationships are built and partnerships formed. We wanted to participate in bringing the first Startup weekend to Limerick because we appreciate the huge role this event can play both locally and nationally for our Startup landscape. This is just the beginning!!! Just think… I was there at the beginning of Startup Weekend in Limerick. Something I know will live with me forever.
We want attendees first and foremost to get a understanding of what #startuplife and building a startup is all about. To engage with people who are on the same journey with the same ambition and drive. We know your apprehensions and understand your worry… We have been there and we are still alive to share the tale :). We want to help you to help yourself. That is simply it.
Join us November 21st to 23rd for an all action weekend of Startup madness, creativity and fun. This is your opportunity. From all the StartupWeekend Limerick organisers we can’t wait to meet you, hear your ideas and assist in anyway we can. #SWLimerick