Tech industry group it@cork has expanded its European Tech Cluster programme ‘Innovation That Matters’ to focus on building innovation networks between Cork and China.
This year the five shortlisted finalists will each receive access to various online UCC “Doing Business in China” modules and the winner will receive a trip to China sponsored by Cork City Council who will also provide direct access to strategic partners. The winner will also be awarded a prize of €2,000 sponsored by Avnet/Client Solutions.
“This year the focus of Innovation that Matters turns to the East as we want to create an awareness of the Chinese market as well as highlighting the existing partnerships in place between Cork and China”, explained Ian O’Flynn, Bord Gáis Networks & Innovation that Matters programme manager.
“The winning company will benefit from the Innovation that Matters process and will be rewarded with a trip to China with the added benefit of potential funding and introductions to support their business”, he added.
Russell Quigley, Pickacab, won the Innovation that Matters initiative in 2012 and was awarded a cash prize and an invitation to a trade mission to Chicago.
Cork: the tech gateway to Europe
“Innovation That Matters is one strand, among many others we will deploy in 2013” said Denis Collins, chairman of the board, European Tech Cluster, it@Cork.
Ireland’s IT industry hasn’t reached its full potential and could yet grow to five times its size, Collins told the ITLG’s Silicon Valley Comes to Cork event in January.
Collins, whose organisation counts 300 firms as members, said a number of key steps would ensure the industry reaches its full potential.
“The IT Industry could be a minimum five times more that it is now by Horizon 2020,” Collins said.
“It can also contribute an additional two to one or three to one spin-off jobs in top of this. As chairman of over 300 members, which represents €300bn globally and over €1bn in Ireland, the IT industry is positioned as a leading industry but we haven’t stretched to its full potential,” he said.