Third Regional Start-up Summit to take place in Limerick

The Third Regional Start-up Summit led by Scale Ireland will focus on the potential and the challenges facing start-ups and scaling companies around Ireland.

Scale Ireland’s Third Annual Start-up Summit will take place in Limerick at the end of February

Featuring a wide range of regionally-based start-ups and scaling companies such as Kneat, Provizio, SwiftComply, HookeBio and YellowSchedule, to name a few, the event will focus on the opportunities and challenges facing start-ups and scaling businesses around Ireland.

“This is an important opportunity for tech leaders around the country to debate the significant opportunities of Ireland’s indigenous tech sector to our economic future – a conversation which is of growing importance”

The event is supported by Google, the Ireland Strategic Investment Fund (ISIF), Enterprise Ireland and Atlantic Bridge.

Defining Ireland’s economic future

Scale Ireland CEO Martina Fitzgerald said that the Summit takes place at a time when Ireland’s Government has voiced its ambition for Ireland to be positioned as a global innovation leader.

“So this is an important opportunity for tech leaders around the country to debate the significant opportunities of Ireland’s indigenous tech sector to our economic future – a conversation which is of growing importance,” Fitzgerald said.

“Our State of Start-ups survey will provide us with vital information on the key issues and opportunities facing founders.”

Positioning Irish companies to become global leaders is paramount, said Adaire Fox-Martin, managing director of Google Ireland and president, Google Cloud.

“Google has a strong and proud record of supporting Irish tech start-ups and scaling companies, as well as the wider indigenous tech sector.

“Scale Ireland’s Regional Summit is an important opportunity to promote dynamic companies across the country which are contributing so much to their communities through employment, innovation and growth. It is equally important for Google to support the ambition of these companies to become global leaders. So the Regional Start-up Summit places an important focus on how Ireland can best achieve this.”

State of Start-ups survey

Ahead of the Summit, Scale Ireland has launched the third State of Start-ups Survey 2024 to get the views of founders and CEOs on key issues that affect the overall sector. The survey can be accessed here

These include the availability of capital, potential of AI, staffing and skills as well as the effectiveness of key State supports and regulations.

Almost 250 CEOs/Founders responded to last year’s survey – one of the biggest of its kind for the sector.

The survey last year found that 51.6% of CEOs and founders considered funding to be their biggest challenge, up from 47% a year earlier.

This year’s survey also focuses on other issues including student internships, greater diversity in the sector, and increasing awareness of sustainability.

Scale Ireland will publish the survey results to coincide with the Regional Start-up Summit next month. Scale Ireland is collaborating on the Summit with Dr Briga Hynes, Associate Professor and Entrepreneurship Lead, the Kemmy Business School, and Professor Stephen Kinsella, Professor of Economics and Co Director of the innovative Immersive Software Engineering Programme, University of Limerick.

“It is critical that we get the feedback of founders across the country on the key issues and challenges that they are facing at this important juncture,” said Scale-up Ireland chair Brian Caulfield.

“Our Regional Start-up Summit and State of Start-up Survey will ensure that there is a greater understanding of the potential of the sector, as well as the challenges facing entrepreneurs. Given the current environment, this year we have also included questions on current issues such as AI, while access to capital is expected to remain a key concern alongside the rising cost of doing business.”

Main image at top: Nick Ashmore, Director, Ireland Strategic Investment Fund, Jenny Melia, Executive Director, Enterprise Ireland Martina Fitzgerald, CEO, Scale Ireland, Adaire Fox-Martin, Head, Google Ireland and President, Google Cloud and Brian Caulfield, Chair, Scale Ireland

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