I attended the 4th SCCUL Enterprise Awards (St. Columba’s Credit Union) in The Bailey Hall, NUIG last Monday 27th January. This event has gone from strength to strength since its inception culminating in 200 entries this year for the overall prize of €10,000 and 8 category prizes of €1000 each plus various ‘One to Watch’ awards. This years’ event also involved a student category for the first time which greatly added to the success of this years’ awards.
130 companies exhibited their very diverse range of products and services at this years’ event and all of the students entrants displayed posters highlight their products. The exhibition was declared open by the Mayor of Galway Padraic Conneely and the awards were presented by the Junior Minister for Enterprise, Innovation and Jobs Sean Sherlock T.D. It was a truly inspirational day and attracted a huge crowd to what is to my knowledge the leading event nationally for new businesses. Many of the award winners this year will surely go on to secure Enterprise Ireland grants and Venture Capital funding as has been the case with two previous overall award winners and several category winners.
Many of the exhibitors also signed up for mentoring with the SCCUL Mentors Group which is a group of 80 mentors made of some of Galway’s most successful business leaders who will provide pro bono assistance to these budding entrepreneurs. This is another case of Galway taking a leading role in fostering and encouraging new business. It is a model which several other towns and counties have already shown an interest in emulating. It is a credit to the founders of the Credit Union that they had the vision to expand their remit beyond lending to members to provide this outstanding opportunity for new businesses in Galway.
Founder & Management Consultant
Collins McNicholas Recruitment & HR Service Group