October 23, 2019
Business News

Enterprising Kilkenny man represents county in national finals at Google HQ

INNOVATIVE Kilkenny businessman John Duggan will represent his county at the finals of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur Competition in Dublin tomorrow.

The finals will take place at the Google Headquarters in the capital.

John, co-founder of Loanitt Ltd, will be representing Kilkenny in the Best Idea Category in the national final of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur Competition.

John and 23 other finalists will also compete for the title of Overall Best Young Entrepreneur. The IBYE programme is run by the 31 Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) in local authorities, funded by the Government of Ireland with the support of the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation and Enterprise Ireland.

John who hails from Tullahought, is the co- founder of Loanitt Ltd, a fin-tech company offering an innovative and disruptive new technology, which will optimise customer choice by creating a credit marketplace.

The company now acts as a financial broker working with multiple lenders in the Irish market and is authorized by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission.

John said: “The IBYE competition has been a fantastic journey, particularly now at the finals stage”. He added “there are so many amazing and successful entrepreneurs with great stories, who have built, and are in the process of building successful companies and brands”.

Kilkenny LEO Head of Enterprise Fiona Deegan wished John the best ahead of Sunday’s final.

She said: “John Duggan has been an exceptional entrepreneur to work with right through the IBYE process. Both he and his business partner Padraig Nolan have an excellent attitude to furthering their business and that makes our job a lot easier.  They are credit to the Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny and a further example of how the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in the region. We wish them the very best of luck in the National Final and we look forward to continuing to work with them beyond the Final to help them grow their business.”

The finalists for this year’s Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur include a recent BBC Dragons’ Den participant, an entrepreneur using artificial intelligence drones for river rescues, a serial entrepreneur bringing shopping from your phone to your door and a 19-year-old whose skills learned in transition year now sees her employ 23 people. They also include an entrepreneur using plant based nutrition to combat MS and diabetes and a young woman who is revolutionising the methods by which horses are bred.

The 24 IBYE Finalists for 2019 will be competing for a €100,000 fund across the three categories.  The winner of the Best Business Idea will receive a €15,000 investment with the runner up securing a €5,000 investment. The Best Start-Up Business and Best-Established Business winners will receive a €25,000 investment each with the runners up in those categories receiving a €5,000 investment, while the 2019 Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur selected from the three category winners will receive an additional €20,000 investment.

For more information on the competition, log on to: www.ibye.ie

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