The Innovation Exchange goes nationwide

Expansion of The Innovation Exchange nationwide will allow more Irish tech SMEs to collaborate with large corporates.

The Innovation Exchange is expanding nationally with Galway Technology Centre named the first regional channel partner.

An innovation marketplace that connects large companies facing digital transformation challenges with smaller tech companies to fast-track the solutions, Innovation Exchange is a partnership between Skillnet Ireland and Further, formerly Dublin BIC.

“We look forward to showcasing the extraordinary talent that companies in the West have to offer and to supporting them in scaling their businesses”

The partnership will offer SMEs located in the west of Ireland, and operating in the digital transformation space, the unique opportunity to pitch to, and collaborate with, large corporates looking to access innovation.

“Galway Technology Centre has always had a regional perspective on how we work with innovative, scaling businesses across the west of Ireland and those involved promoting tech enterprise,” said Oliver Daniels, CEO of Galway Technology Centre.

“We have strived to build a strong spirit of collaboration in our dealings throughout the region and look forward to collaborating with The Innovation Exchange.

“This new association will allow us to provide even more support to those businesses and the wider scaling ecosystem in the west. We are honoured to have been chosen as the first regional channel partner for the Innovation Exchange and we look forward to seeing the benefits of this partnership felt across the west of Ireland in the coming months and years.”

Market intelligence

The Innovation Exchange’s aim is to establish a nationwide footprint by onboarding up to ten regional channel partners throughout 2023. The expansion of The Innovation Exchange, which currently has 350 participants, will offer even more SMEs access to the programme’s benefits, including an instant sales pipeline, market intelligence and the capability to sell to large corporates.

“Skillnet Ireland is delighted to announce The Innovation Exchanges’ expansion to all regions of the country and to celebrate today the first of a series of partnerships,” said Liz Thomas, head of Strategic Projects at Skillnet Ireland.

“This nationwide expansion will foster growth and development in all regions of Ireland. Our indigenous SMEs have plenty to offer when it comes to digital innovation. This is a great opportunity for them to easily access the benefits of The Innovation Exchange and collaborate with leading Irish and global corporates throughout the country.” 

Skillnet Ireland has committed €5m to fund The Innovation Exchange which is designed to address the barriers that exist for scaling companies when selling to large companies and multinationals. The programme will support over 1,000 companies between 2022-2025. Since its inception, five deals have been concluded with 20 more in the pipeline. The Innovation Exchange is calling on scale-ups and corporates located in the West of Ireland to register via

“We are looking forward to working with Galway Technology Centre and fostering new and meaningful relationships with innovation hubs in the West,” said Conor Carmody, programme director of The Innovation Exchange.

“In particular, we look forward to showcasing the extraordinary talent that companies in the West have to offer and to supporting them in scaling their businesses.”

Main image at top: Conor Carmody, Programme Director of The Innovation Exchange; Minister Anne Rabbitte; Oliver Daniels, CEO of Galway Technology Centre; Senator Pauline O’Reilly; and Liz Thomas Head of Strategic Projects, Skillnets Ireland

John Kennedy
Award-winning editor John Kennedy is one of Ireland's most experienced business and technology journalists.