News & Events

Ministers Bruton and Nash launch the StartUp Gathering, a programme of more than 300 events taking place from 5 - 10 October, 2015

Programme of Events to take place around Dublin, Waterford, Cork, Limerick and Galway, with additional Startup Gathering programmes also taking place in Ireland North East and North West.

Startup Gathering Week spearheaded by not-for-profit organisation Startup Ireland, with the support of the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, and sponsored by Bank of Ireland.


The Startup Gathering 2015 programme of events was launched today by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton, T.D together with Minister of State for Business and Employment, Ged Nash TD in NDRC, Digital Exchange, Dublin 8. Over 300 Startup Gatherings will take place in five cities across Ireland, making the 5 to 10 of October one of the biggest national startup weeks in the world. The aim of the Startup Gathering 2015 is to promote entrepreneurship and help develop world class regional startup hubs as well as highlighting Ireland’s startup sector to global entrepreneurs, investors and R&D teams. 

Led by the not-for-profit organisation Startup Ireland, supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, with Bank of Ireland as sponsor and key Corporate partner, the 300 Startup Gathering 2015 events will take place across five days in Dublin, Waterford, and Cork, Limerick and Galway, with additional Startup Gathering programmes also taking place in Ireland North East and North West. Participants will have an opportunity to showcase their startups, discover the supports and services available to them, take part in networking opportunities and collaborate with other startups and established corporates. 

Speaking at the launch of the Startup Gathering 2015 programme, Minister Bruton, said “As I have said before, we have great entrepreneurs in Ireland, we just don’t have enough of them. Two thirds of all new jobs across the economy are created by startups – that’s why it is so crucial that we get our policies on entrepreneurship right. We have put in place a startup plan aiming to create almost 100,000 extra jobs from startups over the coming years, and we have created new mentoring supports, new incubation spaces, new tax measures and a new competition to find Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur. The Startup Gathering is a major part of this plan, and the response to the initiative to date is more evidence of the huge potential that exists. I would encourage anyone with an interest in starting a business to get involved, and I look forward to meeting hundreds of our existing and future entrepreneurs at events across the country”. 

Minister Nash, who chairs the Steering Committee of the Startup Gathering, said “We know that Ireland has lots of ambitious entrepreneurs and we are looking for even more of them to come forward and build a Startup revolution. With more than 300 events taking place across the country in the Startup Gathering I would encourage Ireland’s entrepreneurs, investors and mentors to get involved, make connections, and strengthen Ireland’s startup ecosystem right across the country. Through harnessing the talent, ambition and drive of our entrepreneurs we can create more opportunities for companies to start, scale and succeed and ultimately create more jobs.” 

Among the flagship events taking place during Startup Gathering Week: from Monday 5 to Friday 9 October, each of the five cities will host an Open Forum conference event, inviting the startup ecosystem to come together to discuss the big ideas that will turn their location into a startup hub. These sessions will be facilitated by Oscar Ramirez of Startup Commons Global which specialises in online solution for governments to manage, measure and monitor startup ecosystems. 

The StartUp Gathering also has the privilege to host the 12 participating ‘early stage’ companies from the inaugural ChallengeUP programme, a joint incubation programme supported by Intel, Cisco and Deutsche Telekom.  These 12 companies were selected from over 300 applicants across EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) and are visiting the StartUp Gathering as part of an extensive learning and networking experience offered by the ChallengeUp Programme.  We welcome too the numerous mentors supporting the ChallengeUP companies from Intel, Cisco and Deutsche Telekom. 

To attract overseas entrepreneurs, Enterprise Ireland has established a dedicated €500k Startup fund in conjunction with the Startup Gathering to attract international startups to locate in Ireland.  

A sample of the events taking place during Startup Gathering 2015 week include: 

Silicon Stroll 2015 @ the Marker Hotel, Dublin

Early stage entrepreneurs will engage with Tech Giants and Business Influencers at the “Current Trends and Future Insights” Conference in the Marker Hotel Dublin. Multinationals from the Internet, enterprise software and the ‘Internet of Things’ will deliver insights on where their industries are currently and where they may be in 3-5 or 10 years’ time.  

Smart Agri Food Business @ Garyvoe Hotel, Cork

This event will bring together farmers, producers, and restaurants to help them understand how their businesses connect, discover new opportunities for growing their business and creating jobs.  

Funding and Innovative Supports for Start Ups and SMEs @ Shannon Applied Biotechnology Centre, Limerick

This will bring together stakeholders in the Irish biotech/biopharma sector to determine the interest of industry in an open innovation funding strategy and the benefits to Ireland of this this funding model which brings together an anchor large company client and a number of smaller companies ranging from startup to established. 

Design Your Future@Biosciences Building NUI Galway

This event promotes entrepreneurship as a career path to researchers at different stages of their career. The event provides an outstanding opportunity to help young scientists in their career development and offers them an interdisciplinary discussion forum within an exclusive circle. 

Export Awareness Workshop @ The Garden Room, The Mall, Waterford

Organised by Enterprise Ireland this Startup Gathering will assist Startup companies and promoters who are considering developing an export market, with information on how to develop their export potential and providing business intelligence in the form of country, company, and market and sector information. 

Bank of Ireland

Bank of Ireland will also run a dedicated programme of events across each City in support of the Startup Gathering. A sample of the programme includestalks with leading sectorial and industry experts in Bank of Ireland branches in College Green, Grand Canal Square and Enterprise Lounge Grafton Street; a series of events in Waterford concluding with Pitch Night featuring titan of industry Dr. Michael O’Foghlu. In Cork, Limerick and Galway, Bank of Ireland branches will host events including partnerships with IBEC for Speed Networking, Advice Clinics, Innovation and Your Business  (Patrick St, Cork) and Moving your Business from Startup to Growth (South Mall, Cork).   

Eoin Costello, co-founder of Startup Ireland said “Ireland simply doesn’t have time for a gradual evolution of our startup industry, the increasing rate of change brought about by technology requires a ‘startup revolution’ if Ireland is to continue to be a high growth economy in the next 10 years. Startup Gathering 2015 is more than just an awareness campaign. It’s about driving real change across the startup sector, creating better networks, connections and collaborations with all of the players – in short from October the 5th to 10th we want to kick start Ireland’s Startup revolution. From today, people can download the Startup Gathering app and see how they can get involved, where the Startup Gatherings are taking place, whose expertise they can learn from and what connections they can make. I am confident that within this programme of events, great ideas small and large will be transformed into excellent new businesses, new jobs and bring us closer to the ambition for Ireland to become a global startup hub. 

“We already have most of the key elements in place. As the Forbes’ best country in the world for business, Ireland has lots in its favour with an enviable presence of leading international companies, good rankings in the Global Innovation Index, a skilled workforce, good accelerators and incubators for early stage companies and well-established support systems from State agencies.” 

Gerry Prizeman Head of Enterprise Development, Bank of Ireland, sponsor and key Corporate partner of the Startup Gathering 2015, said “We know that all startups have to start somewhere, from the kitchen table to the scaling of a business with global ambitions. Our entrepreneurs are driving their businesses forward every day and we want to support them. In the programme announced today for the Startup Gathering Week, we can see some of Ireland’s hardest working, determined entrepreneurs coming together to share their skills and expertise. We look forward to the week itself and want to encourage people to come forward and get involved by either hosting or attending a gathering.” 

The full programme of events is available for download on the Startup Gathering 2015 app online at while the direct link to the app on App Store is - and on Google Play - 



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Startup Commons - Startup Commons Global brings efficiency, transparency and measurement to startup and innovation support services. They help cities, regions and countries to map out, visualize, measure, maintain and further develop a healthy and vibrant startup ecosystem, generating new businesses, jobs and innovations, while improving the ROI of the city’s startup ecosystem activities and help attract to new talent and investments to the region. Startup Commons works with international agencies and governments around the world. 

Their White Paper on Startup Ecosystems is available to download here -

Startup Ireland Partnership – Startup Ireland is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to the goal of making Ireland a global startup hub by 2020, a Startup Island. Startups that are designed to scale have the potential to grow rapidly internationally thereby creating significant jobs and innovation in Ireland. The Government’s goal is to make Ireland the best small country in the world for business, a global hub for investors, entrepreneurs, researchers and corporates. Startup Ireland’s goal is to complement this objective by helping build a world class startup ecosystem here so that Ireland becomes a leading destination from which to ‘Start, Scale, Succeed’. To be internationally competitive these startup hubs must reflect the natural advantages and resources unique to each of Ireland’s cities and complement the strategies of Enterprise Ireland, the IDA and other state agencies. 

Startup Ireland’s membership of Startup Nations, the global network of national entrepreneurship initiatives, gives us unrivalled access to international best practice. There are significant benefits to be gained from the learnings of 40 fellow members (such as Startup Chile, Startup Canada and Startup Korea) in terms of establishing and accelerating high impact startups.


Bank of Ireland Startup Gathering events programme 

Bank of Ireland will also run a dedicated programme of events across each city in support of the Startup Gathering, including five days of digital skills, mentor and legends talks with leading sectorial and industry experts taking place in Bank of Ireland branches in College Green, Grand Canal Square and Enterprise Lounge Grafton Street; a series of events in Waterford in partnership with WLR; At Ours At Yours; Open Hours Advice Clinics (with our VC partners Kernel Capital); Techy Teen Student Awards, concluding with concluding with Pitch Night featuring titan of industry Dr. Michael O’Foghlu. 

In Cork, Limerick and Galway, Bank of Ireland branches will host events including partnerships with IBEC for Speed Networking (BOI Douglas, Cork), Advice Clinics addressing How to get your business moving, (Blackpool, Cork) Innovation and Your Business  (Patrick St, Cork) and Moving your Business from Startup to Growth (South Mall, Cork); taking a wide-view of what entrepreneurs and startups need. 

Bank of Ireland Limerick will host a programme which includes Education sessionsPromotion of Sports, Health and Well-Being (Caherdavin, Limerick), Social Media for your Business (Dooradoyle, Limerick) and tech Mentoring evening event Start Scale Succeed in partnership with Mobanode; the Galway city and region programme addresses such questions as: Startups – How to Launch? (Workbench, Mainguard Street) and How to scale a startup? (Eyre Square), alongside topical events; Power of Big Data (Workbench Mainguard Street) with Bank of Ireland data expert Olivier Van Paryis and Cloud Computing (Eyre Square) with Bank of Ireland Head of Technology Sector, Adrian Mullet. 

Challenge Up Programme - Challenge Up! is the most innovative corporate start-up program of 2015, by Intel, Cisco & hub:raum powered by Deutsche Telekom. The biggest value for participating startups is the support to accelerate the go-to-market preparation and commercialization of the projects. Access to expert networks all around the world offers startups the technology and business know-how need to succeed. 

The startups that are best at executing their solution while in the program are eligible for potential co-investment from Cisco, Intel and Deutsche Telekom also from leading corporate venture funds. 

For more information about the programme please see