Viddyad named winner of ESB Spark of Genius Award 2013 (video)

30 Oct 2013

John McKiernan, strategic partnership development manager with ESB, and Grainne Barron from Viddyad, the 2013 ESB Spark of Genius Award winner

Cloud-based video ad creation tool Viddyad has been named the winner of the 2013 ESB Spark of Genius Award, beating off competition from 100 Irish technology companies.

Viddyad is a cloud-based video ad creation tool, with access to more than 10m videos and images. Users can simply select the videos and images, add text, logo, music and special effects, and the Viddyad platform creates a video commercial in seconds for use online, through social media, blogs or websites.

Viddyad will now pick up a cash prize of €25,000.

On the win, Viddyad CEO Grainne Barron said: “I’m really proud of my team, their professionalism and everything we have built together.”

The ESB Spark of Genius Award focuses on high-potential technology start-ups and was open to any Irish start-up which has been in operation for less than three years and has received less than €1m in funding to date. Entrants were judged on the uniqueness of their idea, their level of development thus far, and their potential for future growth.

“The calibre of this year’s entries highlights the talent and creativity that exists in Ireland today, and the spirit of enterprise that will help to uphold our reputation as a centre for innovation excellence,” said John McKiernan, strategic partnership development manager with ESB.

Two rounds of pitching took place during the Dublin Web Summit, with the grand finale playing out on the Main Stage in front of an audience of thousands of leading international start-ups and technology investors. An expert panel of judges including Noel Ruane of Polaris Ventures, Sean Blanchfield of Scale Front, and John McInernan of ESB, were tasked with crowning the overall winner.

“This award offers a superb opportunity for fledgling Irish tech start-ups to showcase their product to some of the world’s top investors and tech leaders, as well as the international media,” said Dublin Web Summit founder Paddy Cosgrave.

“We congratulate Viddyad on winning this prestigious prize against stiff competition. They join an elite group of previous winners of the award, including Datahug, which has since gone on to raise €6m in funding from Salesforce, DFJ and several others, and last year’s winner, Smartthings, who has raised €3m in funding to date,” Cosgrave said.

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