Innovation fund to attract world’s top venture capitalists

12 Jul 2010

Innovation Fund Ireland – a major €500m venture capital fund created by the Irish Government – has been launched in New York by Taoiseach Brian Cowen and will attract venture capitalists to Ireland’s shores.

“The Innovation Fund Ireland will attract leading international venture capital firms and experienced investment managers to Ireland, where they will invest in innovation-intensive small and medium-sized firms and open doors to powerful networks of contacts and decision-makers,” the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation, Batt O’Keeffe TD, said today.

“Venture capital is relatively underdeveloped in Ireland so this is our opportunity to leverage the power of the global investor community and create high-quality Irish jobs in the process.

“The objective is to drive the creation of sustainable jobs in Ireland in the technology, life science, financial services, clean-tech and other sectors.”

O’Keefe said that Ireland has a strong technical human capital base, significant public investment in research and development and a high concentration of major enterprises which now must be translated into more home-grown success stories.

“To create a thriving high-value indigenous enterprise sector, we must expand the indigenous enterprise base.

“And we can do that by enabling entrepreneurs to co-invest with the Government in high-potential start-ups that can create ‘smart’ jobs in key growth sectors of the economy.”

O’Keeffe said he will be working closely with the Taoiseach and Enterprise Ireland in driving the venture capital agenda as we take further steps to position Ireland as “the global innovation hub.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years