8th June 2023
The ten finalists have been announced for INVENT 2023, the premier showcase for aspiring innovators and entrepreneurs. From an inclusive, purpose-driven fashion solution, to a menopause support app and emotional wellbeing solutions for children, the range of innovative ideas is immense.
Run by science and technology hub Catalyst, in partnership with Bank of Ireland, the competition recognizes innovative businesses with smart and creative concepts which have high commercial potential.
The epicentre of Northern Ireland’s tech sector, Catalyst is focused on fostering inclusive innovation and developing entrepreneurs in Northern Ireland by providing everything entrepreneurs need to reach higher and succeed faster.
INVENT has been in the running for over a decade. It is an important breakthrough vehicle for exciting businesses which has enabled past finalists to gain media exposure, win customers, attract investment and make connections with partners and mentors.
This year's INVENT has five categories – Greentech, Health and Wellbeing, Product, Business Software and Consumer Software.
The ten finalists are:
- Greentech: Wake and Make – Energy, GoPluggable
- Health and Wellbeing: AXONNR, Little Sunflower
- Product: CycleAid, WearMatter
- Business Software: SEQO, Track
- Consumer Software: Feminatech, Learning Me
The wide range of finalists are attempting to solve some of the most pressing issues facing the world including climate change and mental illness. To help bring their ideas to life they are using AI, apps, online platforms, robotics and digital resources.
INVENT’s overall prize fund totals £50,000, with each category winner taking home £5,000, and the overall winner walking away with an additional £20,000. Additional prizes of £1,000 for best student entry and the best pitch will also be up for grabs on the night.
Programme alumni include CropSafe, which recently raised $3m in seed funding, and Overwatch Research, which was acquired by US tech company Benchling last year.
Meg Magill, INVENT Programme Manager at Catalyst, said: “Catalyst’s vision is to create opportunity for all from world-leading innovation and INVENT provides a brilliant opportunity to recognize some of those who will hopefully be leading the way when it comes to innovation in the very near future.
“Every year we are blown away by the caliber of the entrepreneurs and companies that come through the competition and this year we are really encouraged by the variety and diversity of the teams and their business ideas.”
Niall Devlin, Head of Business Banking NI at Bank of Ireland, said: “We have been hugely impressed by the incredibly high standard of innovation and entrepreneurship evident across the entries for this year’s INVENT awards, which made it a real challenge for the judging panel to select our ten finalists.
“It’s inspiring to see the ambition, creativity and vision within our early-stage start-up and entrepreneur community, who remain relentless in their pursuit of new and innovative ways to address real problems and create new opportunities.
“On behalf of Bank of Ireland, I want to pass our congratulations to the finalists.”
The INVENT awards ceremony will be hosted at the ICC Waterfront in Belfast on Thursday 21st September. To book tickets go to invent23.co/awards.