Silicon Valley to roll into Cork in January as ITLG comes to town

12 Jul 2012

Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore and ITLG president and founder, John Hartnett at the announcement of the ITLG Silicon Valley Comes To Ireland - The Gathering Event, which will take place 21-22 January 2013 in Cork

Former Intel CEO and chairman Craig Barrett is leading a delegation of some of the top Irish and Irish-American businesspeople in Silicon Valley, Hollywood and America’s East Coast to Cork on 21 and 22 January 2013 as part of the Irish Technology Leadership Group’s (ITLG) annual pilgrimage to Ireland and ‘Gathering 2013’.

The two-day gathering of Irish executives has taken place in Limerick, Belfast and Dublin, and Cork is the obvious next destination when you consider not only the city’s start-up talent but the presence of technology giants like Apple, EMC, IBM, Trend Micro, Big Fish Games and many more in Cork city and region.

In fact, Cork was the first overseas location selected by a then-fledgling Apple Computer in 1983. In recent months, Apple announced 500 new jobs in addition to the 2,800 people it employs in Cork.

The two-day event will consist of keynote presentations, panel debates and company showcases.

It will be led by Barrett, who chairs the ITLG, and will be hosted by Cork Chamber of Commerce, Cork City Council, University College Cork and Cork Institute of Technology.

The Irish global ‘tech’ family

The news was welcomed by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny, TD. “I’m delighted that Cork has reached out to Silicon Valley and invited such a distinguished group of executives to meet with representatives from Ireland’s technology sector as part of the Gathering Ireland 2013,” Kenny said. 

“While the business links between the US and Ireland are undoubtedly crucial to Ireland’s economic growth, there are also strong bonds of friendship and kinship between our two countries. Some 38m Americans claim Irish ancestry. They are a part of the Irish global family and the gathering presents an opportunity for us to extend a unique invitation to these and many more.”

In addition to Barrett, speakers and panelists travelling to Ireland as part of the ITLG delegation will include Una Fox, VP, Disney Corp; John Hartnett, president and founder ITLG; Rory McInerney, vice-president, Intel Corp; Barry O’Sullivan, SVP, Cisco; James Herlihy, managing director, Private Wealth Management, Deutsche Bank; Sean O’Donoghue, CTO, Madison Square Garden Company; with additional high-profile delegates to be announced.

At the event, the delegation will participate in more than 50 pitch sessions with start-up and scaling technology companies from the island of Ireland, and will select a shortlist to participate at the 2013 Irish Technology Leadership Group/Irish Times Technology Awards in Silicon Valley, California, next spring.

“We are delighted for our event to be part of The Gathering Ireland 2013 and our Irish-American delegation are looking forward to meeting the latest innovative Irish companies, as well as business and government leaders at this year’s event,” said Hartnett.

“It is incredibly important for start-up companies to get exposure in the United States to capital and customers to allow them to scale and this can be done most effectively through a solid connection with the Irish diaspora,” he added.

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