€23m investment to push up tech entrepreneurship around Ireland

21 Oct 2013

The Irish Government is set to pump €23m into a new initiative to help technology companies around the regions of Ireland ramp up their R&D efforts, Séan Sherlock, TD, Minister of State responsible for Research and Innovation, has announced this morning.

In at Thomond Park in Limerick today, Sherlock announced the new €23m investment drive, which Enterprise Ireland will manage.

Broken down, this funding will be used to spawn a nationwide network of what the Government is describing as 12 ‘Technology Gateways‘. The aim is for these gateways to feed into the institute of technology system in Ireland to help companies deliver technology-based solutions.

These 12 gateways will be housed in eight institutes of technology: Athlone IT, Cork Institute of Technology, Dublin Institute of Technology, IT Tallaght, IT Tralee, Letterkenny Institute of Technology, Limerick Institute of Technology and Waterford Institute of Technology.

The overarching aim is to help such gateways as the R&D arm of companies.

They will focus on spawning technology solutions through collaborative projects with the research teams in the eight institutes of technology.

Expertise, according to Sherlock, will be open to companies in areas such as applied biotechnology, connected media, biodiagnostics, engineering materials, pharmaceutical and healthcare.

This is in addition to mobile services, coatings innovations, embedded systems, polymer technologies, intelligent sensor systems,
photonics and wireless solutions.

The Government’s primary goal, said Sherlock, is to generate growth and create employment in towns and cities around Ireland.

“The Technology Gateway Network will give companies all over Ireland access to technology solutions for their business challenges.”

He said Enterprise Ireland’s involvement in this process would ensure the commercial value of these solutions could be converted into new products and services so that “quality” employment opportunities can spin-out as a result.

Declan Lyons from Enterprise Ireland added that these tech gateways will connect the research and innovation capabilities of the institutes of technology to the companies that need novel technology solutions.

Ireland road sign image via Shutterstock.com

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic