Arizona State University teams up with DCU Ryan Academy

23 Dec 2010

DCU Ryan Academy for Entrepreneurship has agreed a deal with the Venture Catalyst initiative at Arizona State University to offer first-destination access for Irish start-ups into the US.

Start-ups that will be developing in the Propeller Venture Accelerator in Ireland from February 2011 will be able to establish a presence in the US market through the Arizona State University (ASU) SkySong facility in Scottsdale Arizona.

Launched in October 2010, with the help of a $1m grant from Arizona governor Jan Brewer, Venture Catalyst is ASU’s new entrepreneurial assistance initiative to help faculty, students and ASU-linked companies launch new start-ups or accelerate existing ventures.

“Developing the best venture accelerator for start-ups is our aim, and the new relationship with ASU’s Venture Catalyst and SkySong facility is part of the global angle we are taking,” says Gordon McConnell, deputy CEO, Ryan Academy.

Only a 90-minute flight away from Silicon Valley, McConnell says Arizona offers Irish start-ups a great “first landing” location to operate, with a good climate, low taxes and lower operating costs than California. SkySong already has a variety of established ventures from Ireland, Mexico, Singapore, Brazil, Turkey, India and Germany. 

“This partnership will not only help the next generation of Irish companies get access to doing business in the US but will also help start-ups in Arizona to get access to the important European markets through Dublin through our relationship with the Ryan Academy,” adds Julia Rosen, associate vice-president, ASU.

A number of Irish-based companies have already signed-up to support the Propeller Accelerator programme, including Sage Ireland, Arthur Cox, Publicis D and Tomkins IP. ISME and Enterprise Ireland are also partners.

“We have very much adapted the seed accelerator model to leverage the strengths of the Dublin region, so you will see a greater emphasis on senior executives as mentors on our programme, compared to similar programmes in the US like Techstars, adds McConnell.

For further information on the new alliance between Ryan Academy and ASU click on the Ryan Academy blog.

DCU Ryan Academy is a partnership between DCU and the family of the late Tony Ryan of Ryanair. The Academy exists to promote entrepreneurship and innovation and to help entrepreneurs and researchers develop ideas, learn new skills and network. The Ryan Academy is working with researchers and entrepreneurs to help them achieve their potential.








Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic