Pat Carroll, Startup Grind Limerick and Network Limerick President Louise Lawlor, Blink Design
ONE of the positive effects of the economic downturn over recent years has been the emergence of a great energy amongst our local start-up community.
The past five years have challenged many young entrepreneurs to think differently about how they do business.
At a higher level the spirit of collaboration and engagement across many Limerick stakeholders, something fostered by our local authority, has allowed our business community to share ideas, develop relationships and play their part in the future of the city.
One example has been the introduction of Startup Grind to Limerick.
Startup Grind is the largest independent startup community, actively educating, inspiring, and connecting 215,000 founders in over 185 cities.
The initiative nurtures startup ecosystems in 70 countries through events, media, and partnerships with organisations like Google for Entrepreneurs.
The Limerick Startup Grind was established by well-known social media networker Pat Carroll. Pat is the Startup Community Manager with Bank of Ireland Startups in Limerick and is a real believer in the importance of combining face-to-face and virtual in order to achieve really effective networking.
The cornerstone of the Startup Grind community is monthly events featuring successful local founders, innovators, educators and investors who share lessons learned on the road to building great companies.
Founded in Silicon Valley, Startup Grind has now hosted 2,000 ‘fireside chats’ since its founding in 2010.
To date, Startup Grind has helped millions of entrepreneurs find mentorship, connect to partners and hires, pursue funding, and reach new users.
Since its introduction to Limerick last year the Limerick Startup Grind has hosted four fireside chat featuring names like Uber’s Kieran Harte, Yellowschedule’s Martina Skelly and Chris Byrne of Sensorpro.
This Thursday will see Startup Grind Limerick welcoming Paul Quigley home to the city.
Quigley is co-founder of NewsWhip, a technology company based in Dublin and New York. NewsWhip identifies and tracks the main content getting engagement online.
Their innovative use of data drawn from billions of social network users is then used globally by publishers, brand marketers & PR firms. Global customers include NBC, Bloomberg, BBC, Guardian News & Media, Bild, Die Welt, China Daily and many others. Limerick city native, Paul is a graduate of Trinity College. Prior to co-founding Newswhip six years ago, Paul practised law in New York.
Startup Grind is a vibrant initiative which shines a light on the incredible innovation and success taking place in Limerick whilst also changing how entrepreneurs, innovators and educators collaborate and engage together.
As more and more young educated people choose to stay in Limerick and as we see more of our expats choosing to return home, Limerick finds itself in a really interesting place when it comes to our start-up and scale-up community. Already we are seeing the likes of Techro, Tippytalk, Shadowman Sports and many others being received to critical acclaim. It is crucial we nurture this community. They are our city’s future.
Tickets for this Thursday’s Startup Grind at the Strand Hotel are available at https://www.startupgrind.com/limerick
Reversing doughnut effect in Limerick
AS the Greater Limerick region shows strong signs of recovery with numerous positive announcements, it is imperative that the city centre feels the effects of this recovery and the infamous "doughnut effect" is reversed.
While there are numerous stakeholders that each have to play their part, Limerick Chamber is encouraging the business community to lead the charge and demand more of others to ensure the full rejuvenation of the city in line with our 2030 plan.
The Chamber is hosting an event at the Hunt Museum on Wednesday March 9 which will highlight some of the opportunities we have in Limerick city if we get it right.
Dr Lisa O'Malley will paint a picture and facilitate debate on the night to establish what the business community can do to make this happen.
With over 20 years of experience as an academic in the UK and Ireland, Dr O'Malley has a reputation for excellence in research and teaching and will show examples of other cities that have been through similar processes and how they managed it.
This event is an excellent opportunity for those with a vested interest in the successful future of our city to engage and play their part.
If you wish to attend the event you can log on to https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/reimagining-and-rejuvenating-limerick-city-centre-an-event-for-city-centre-traders-tickets-21726418302
Credit due to literary team
I must give great credit to the team behind the Limerick Literary Festival for the cracking line-up of guests scheduled this weekend.
The festival, now in its 32nd year, honours the distinguished Limerick author Kate O’Brien.
Limerick Literary Festival seeks to promote Limerick nationally as a place of literary excellence and to provide a platform where readers can meet their favourite authors and other readers.
The Festival this year will take place over the weekend of February 26-28 with the theme of the weekend being “Rebellion” - appropriate given the year that's in it.
Guests include Louis DeBernieres, Pauline Bewick, Theo Dorgan, Kevin Myers, Donal Ryan, Tim Pat Coogan, Tom Clogan and many others.