Small businesses and start-ups in Kildare are being encouraged by the Local Enterprise Office to enter this year’s National Enterprise Awards, for a chance to represent the county and share a €20,000 national prize fund.
The deadline to enter the LEO Kildare County Enterprise Awards is Friday, February 26.
Last year’s local winner was Kelly’s Mountain Brew from Clane and this year’s local winner will be announced by mid-March and will represent the county at the 2016 National Enterprise Awards in June, with twelve awards on offer and a top prize of €10,000.
Co-ordinated by the 31 Local Enterprise Offices in the Local Authorities Network, the National Enterprise Awards were set-up to celebrate the achievements of Ireland’s micro-enterprise sector.
Previous winners have included Irish Yogurts from West Cork, Hot Irishman Irish Coffee (Walsh Whiskey Distillery) from Carlow, Innovate IT and Telecoms from Wexford, Grouse Lodge Recording Studios from Westmeath, DesignPro from Limerick and Simtech Aviation from Fingal.
According to Mary Foley of the Local Enterprise Office Kildare, the National Enterprise Awards highlight the success stories behind Ireland’s small businesses.
First stop shop
Encouraging local businesses to enter this year’s competition, she said: “The Local Enterprise Office is the first stop shop for small businesses and start-ups here in the county and we want to celebrate their impressive achievements, giving them national recognition for their successes. Winning awards can open doors for businesses and we’re inviting local businesses and start-ups to take the next step by entering the National Enterprise Awards.”
Last year’s national winners included: MyBio (Overall Winners, supported by Local Enterprise Office Kilkenny), Áine Knitwear (Design Award, supported by Local Enterprise Office Clare), Vision Built Manufacturing (Export Award, supported by the Local Enterprise Office Galway), the Property Button, (Start-Up Award, supported by Local Enterprise Office Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown) and Gannon Eco (Innovation Award, supported by Local Enterprise Office Westmeath).
Three other national finalists from 2015 were: Glendalough Distillery (supported by Local Enterprise Office Wicklow), Elemex (supported by Local Enterprise Office Louth) and Kinnegar Brewing (supported by Local Enterprise Office Donegal).
Further details about the supports available to local start-ups and small businesses are available through www.localenterprise.ie.
Updates around the National Enterprise Awards are available by searching #NEAwards16 on social media.