Start-ups have until Wednesday to enter Spark of Genius competition

30 Sep 2013

Ruby McHugh and Paddy Cosgrave, founder and CEO of the Dublin Web Summit, at the launch of applications for this year's ESB Spark of Genius Award earlier this month. Image via Marc O'Sullivan

ESB has extended the deadline for entries to this year’s Spark of Genius competition, which will see 30 technology-led start-up finalists battle it out on stage at the Dublin Web Summit in late October. They will be vying to get their hands on a €25,000 prize fund. The deadline for entries is now 2 October.

Start-ups that have been set up in Ireland can submit their entries up until 6pm on Wednesday, ESB said. The former deadline had been 26 September.

Entrance criteria

In order to be eligible to enter, ventures must be designated as high potential and be operating in the technology field. They must be up and running for less than three years, and have received less than €1m in funding to date.

From these entries, ESB and the Dublin Web Summit organisers will announce the shortlist of 30 finalists on Friday, 11 October.

These tech ventures will then head to the Dublin Web Summit that’s taking place in the RDS in Dublin in late October.

The 30 chosen companies will then each be on a mission to net the overall prize: a cash windfall to the tune of €25,000, to help them scale up, plus a fund of services.

The start-ups will be judged on the uniqueness of their idea, their level of development thus far, and their potential for future growth, ESB said.

Past winners

As part of the Dublin Web Summit, ESB has been running this contest for start-ups for the past four years.

Previous winners have included Brite:Bill, Redeem & Get and Datahug.

Datahug, for instance, has raised €6m from Salesforce, DFJ Esprit, Oyster Capital and Silicon Valley investor Ron Conway, plus others, since scooping the Spark of Genius prize in 2010.

And, last year’s winner, Smartthings, has since raised €3m.

Carmel Doyle was a long-time reporter with Silicon Republic