Start-up of the week: Tr3dent

4 Jan 2016

Kevin McCaffrey, Tr3dent's founder, and John Frizzell, software developer.

Our start-up of the week is Tr3dent, a Galway-based company that produces innovative 3D data visualisation software that helps organisations see their data in a natural three-dimensional environment, leading to better decision-making.

“We help companies identify and capitalise on opportunities to improve performance by seeing their business data in ways never seen before,” says Tr3dent founder and CEO Kevin McCaffrey.

“We are currently targeting our data visualisation platform at enterprise clients in the ICT market and look to expand into other verticals such as health, finance and travel over the next 18 months.”

The founder

McCaffrey has over 20 years’ experience in the ICT sector, delivering enterprise solutions globally and working in Canada, the US, Europe and Africa.

“I returned to Ireland in late 2014 from Cape Town, South Africa, where I lived for nine years and had built a successful consulting and software development company.

“Prior to that, I had been in Canada for 13 years, where I worked for Reuters and then was a co-owner of a Software Development and Training company in Toronto,” he says.

The technology

“Without giving away any of our secrets, our platform firstly connects to clients’ existing data sources using APIs to gather the necessary data. This is then transformed and mapped using our proprietary visualisation engine to enable the 3D model of the data to be dynamically created,” McCaffrey explains.

“We are currently using technology from the gaming industry and, for certain clients, we are also using the Xbox Kinect or the Leap Motion Controller to provide the user with a fully interactive experience.”

McCaffrey says the ultimate goal is to be the enterprise and SME market leader in 3D data visualisation.

Revenue is king

McCaffrey is satisfied with the progress Tr3dent has made over the past year.

“We are generating revenue, we currently have over 4,000 users in more than 100 countries, we have had great feedback from presenting at the Web Summit, and we have grown the company now to a team of five.

“It was also a great endorsement to have received CSF funding from Enterprise Ireland, and we look forward to becoming HPSU funded in 2016.

“We have also identified key enterprise software vendors that we will be collaborating with in the coming year.”

‘As a start-up, one of the buzzes you get from being an entrepreneur is the satisfaction from overcoming challenges. My approach is to face them head on, deal with them and then move forward’

According to McCaffrey, the team has some very specific goals for 2016, one of which is to secure funding to provide an 18-month runway for product development and marketing activities.

“We have already commenced discussions with several private investors and angel syndicates, but are always open to talk to potential investors.”

He says that, in starting up a business, there are always challenges, whether they are financial, resourcing or client related.

“As a start-up, one of the buzzes you get from being an entrepreneur is the satisfaction from overcoming challenges. My approach is to face them head on, deal with them and then move forward.”

Sales and market validation


Tr3dent CEO Kevin McCaffrey with sales and marketing director Michael Burke

McCaffrey says the start-up scene in Ireland is very active. “I have been very impressed with the level of support provided by Enterprise Ireland, West Bic, HBAN and, of course, the team at the GMIT Innovation Hub where we are based.

“The local start-up scene is really picking up momentum and the work that people such as John Breslin, Dave Cunningham and Tracy Keogh are doing to promote the Galway Innovation District is excellent.”

His advice to other start-ups is to focus on revenues and selling from the get-go. “Only once you have real customers that have spent money on your product, you have true market validation.

“This is incredibly important for discussions with investors, but equally important as you must have the revenue to pay the bills.”

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