20 new Irish tech start-ups get €100k each

First-of-its-kind programme in Ireland, operated by Dogpatch Labs and funded by NDRC, selects individuals with entrepreneurial edge and helps them find co-founder and build a start-up.

Irish talent accelerator Founders has created more than 20 new tech start-ups and has selected its top eight for €100,000 in pre-seed funding.

For its inaugural 12-week programme, which captured the attention of at least 500 applicants, Founders selected 40 individuals to partner up and embark on an immersive journey to creating global tech startups.

“Ireland has an abundance of tech talent, one of the best education systems in the world, and has been home to the European headquarters of the tech giants for the last decade”

What sets this initiative apart is the fact that these visionary duos, from diverse backgrounds, were complete strangers brought together by their shared passion for driving change.

The results speak for themselves; eight of these outstanding duos have already secured €100k in pre-seed funding. This achievement not only showcases their entrepreneurial edge but also underscores the efficacy of the Founders programme. Operated by Dogpatch Labs and funded by NDRC, Founders is a first-of-its-kind for Ireland and that has attracted some of the top mentors from across the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Diversity in action

Kicking off just over three months ago, a highly diverse first cohort reflected over 30% women, 5 different ethnic backgrounds and 20% international participants. Phase 1 included individuals from a wide range of backgrounds, including tech giants Google, Meta, and Stripe, experts from SpaceX and NASA, PHDs in machine learning and data science, and domain experts in energy, healthcare, gaming and sustainability.

“Ireland has an abundance of tech talent, one of the best education systems in the world, and has been home to the European headquarters of the tech giants for the last decade,” said Heather Morris, managing director of Founders.

“The Founders Talent Accelerator creates a new pathway for amazingly talented, outside-the-box thinkers to unleash their entrepreneurial potential and create meaningful change globally”.

An example of one of the startups is GlitchAds co-founded by Aisling Browne, former global expansion and partnerships from Irish unicorn Wayflier and Kingsley Kelly, an engineer with decade-long leadership at Google.

Browne credits Founders as the driving force behind their rapid progress, emphasising the invaluable support system they found: “I discovered my co-founder and an indispensable community of entrepreneurs who genuinely want to see us succeed.”

Founders Portfolio 2024

  • Glitch Ads democratises advertising leveraging the power of ads and AI
  • Inspeq AI is a low-code platform to improve AI applications faster, cheaper and more reliably
  • Gemell provides software to revolutionise fabric visualisation in the textile industry
  • Cocu is an AI tender writer with a model trained on individual  business data to optimise success
  • Talio helps content creators collaborate with followers and unlock product insight for brands
  • Shōden unlocks effortless sales message personalisation through integrated composer UI
  • GamesGrid amplifies brands’ reach and engages audiences through the power of games
  • NocoMed is a measurement and reduction platform for carbon emissions

The programme culminates in an investor showcase of the newly created companies in person at Dogpatch Labs in April 2024.

Applications for the next Founders cohort for September 2024 open in March 2024. For further information or to register your interest, visit the Founders webpage or Dogpatch Labs

ThinkBusiness.ie, powered by Bank of Ireland, has been created for Irish business owners and managers who are seeking information, resources and help on a range of business topics. It provides practical, actionable information and guidance on starting, growing and running a business.