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07/05/19 - Ballybofey businessman wins overall Best Young Entrepreneur title

 

IBYE Donegal Finalists 2019 379x269

Finalists in this year’s Donegal final of Ireland’s Best Young

Entrepreneur pictured with mentor Thomas Cullen at last week’s

awards ceremony in Letterkenny

 

 

Ballybofey businessman wins overall Best Young Entrepreneur title

  

Ballybofey businessman Martin O’Reilly, has said he was absolutely delighted to have been named overall winner of the Donegal final of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur last week. The former Donegal player was also winner of the best start-up business category at the 5th annual awards held in the Radisson Blu Hotel, Letterkenny.

 

IBYE 2019 Rakesh Kumar 379x269

Winner of the Best Idea category Rakesh Kumar, EirChem receives

his award from Eve Anne McCarron, business advisor at Local

Enterprise Office, Donegal and Chief Executive of Donegal County

Council, Seamus Neely

 

 

Donegal Town man Rakesh Kumar took the award in the best idea category while the best established business award went to Letterkenny businesswoman Siobhan Boyle.

 

Speaking after the awards, Martin O’Reilly who runs O’Reilly Sports with his brother Steven, said he was absolutely thrilled.

 

“I am absolutely delighted to have won Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur of the Year Competition in Donegal. I really want to say a huge thank you to all our customers who have been with us from the beginning. Without you, this would not have been possible.”

 

 

IBYE 2019 Martin O'Reilly, O'Reilly Sports 379x269

Winner in the Best Start Up category and overall winner, Martin O’Reilly,

O’Reilly Sports receives his award from Eve Anne McCarron,

business advisor at Local Enterprise Office, Donegal and

Chief Executive of Donegal County Council, Seamus Neely.

 

 

O’Reilly’s Sports based in Ballybofey was founded in October 2017 by Martin and Steven O’Reilly. In the last year, they have designed and manufactured a vast range of personalised and bespoke clothing from playing gear, to leisure wear and workwear for over 100 clubs, businesses and organisations throughout Ireland and the U.K with the a focus on quality and service.

 

Runner up in the start up category was Inishowen’s Laura Bonner who co-founded The Muff Liquor Company in 2017. They produce award winning premium, distilled spirits and launched their flagship product Muff Irish Potato Craft Gin in 2018.

 

IBYE 2019 Laura Bonner Muff Liquor Company 379x269

Runner Up in the Best Start Up category, Laura Bonner – Muff

Liquor Company receives her award from Eve Anne McCarron,

business advisor at Local Enterprise Office, Donegal and Chief

Executive of Donegal County Council, Seamus Neely

 

 

The Best Established Business category was won by Letterkenny businesswoman Siobhan Boyle of Sculpt Cosmetics who offer customers the very best in make up and beauty through three divisions; retail website, physical store and a training academy.

 

IBYE 2019 Siobhan Boyle Sculpt Cosmetics 379x269

Winner in the Best Established category Siobhan Boyle – Sculpt

Cosmetics, receives her award from Eve Anne McCarron, business

advisor at Local Enterprise Office, Donegal and Chief Executive

of Donegal County Council, Seamus Neely

 

 

Kilcar’s Catriona McGinley of Orwell and Browne, an Irish heritage brand that manufactures and supplies Donegal tweed products worldwide, was runner up in the best established category.

 

IBYE 2019 Catriona McGinley Orwell & Browne 379x269

Runner Up in the Best Established category, Catriona McGinley

– Orwell & Browne, receives her award from Eve Anne McCarron,

business advisor at Local Enterprise Office, Donegal and Chief

Executive of Donegal County Council, Seamus Neely

 

 

Winner of the category for the best new business idea was Rakesh Kumar from Donegal Town.

 

Rakesh is the founding CEO for EĢireChem who develop and produce safe, competitive and sustainable products for the life sciences and innovative technologies.

 

Carndonagh’s Paul McLaughlin was named runner-up in the best new idea category with his idea to produce hypoallergenic infant milk formula in Donegal for babies and young children suffering from cow’s milk intolerance due to the protein composition.

 

IBYE 2019 Paul McLaughlin Better Milk 379x269

Runner Up in the Best Idea category Paul McLaughlin, Better Milk

receives his award from Eve Anne McCarron, business advisor at

Local Enterprise Office, Donegal and Chief Executive of Donegal

County Council, Seamus Neely

 

 

Head of Enterprise in Donegal, Michael Tunney not only congratulated all of the winners and finalists, but also had words of praise for all 56 applicants to the Donegal competition this year.

 

 

“The objective of this national competition is to develop the skills and capacity of these young entrepreneurs and progress the potential of these small and micro enterprises. These enterprises and individuals play a vital role in our economy, both locally and nationally,” he said.

 

 

The 14 finalists come from across the county from a diverse range of businesses. They were:

Lorraine Gallagher - Carrigart, Rakesh Kumar -Donegal Town, HitheshShaji - Stranorlar, Paul McLaughlin - Carndonagh, Peter Reynolds - Letterkenny, Kealan McLaughlin - Letterkenny, Laura Bonner - Moville, Aidan Friel - Kerrykeel, Philip Graham - Letterkenny, Martin O’Reilly - Ballybofey, Barry Walsh - Ballyliffin, Fiona Murphy - Letterkenny, Siobhan Boyle - Letterkenny, Catriona McGinley - Kilcar

 

 

The Donegal winners will now progress to represent Donegal at the Regional Finals to be held in Leitrim in June.

 

 

Local Enterprise Office Donegal is supported through co-funding from the Irish Government and the European Regional Development Fund 2014 – 2020. To contact the Local Enterprise Office in Donegal, log on to www.localenterprise.ie/donegal or phone 0749160735.

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