ITT Graduate Gets €10k For His ‘Snaicbox’ Idea

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Niall Harty.

A YOUNG IT Tralee graduate was picked as one of Kerry’s ‘Best Young Entrepreneurs’ at an awards ceremony hosted by the Kerry Local Enterprise Office on Wednesday last week.

There were three winners chosen from 15 young entrepreneurs, who were shortlisted from over 40 applicants.

Niall Harty won the Best New Idea category and received €10,000 investment in his company, Snaicbox, which is a wholefood snack company. The idea is to provide a variety of healthy snack options to his customers through a subscription based e-commerce website delivered on a weekly/monthly basis.

Niall, originally from Adare, has been living in Tralee for the past few years but just recently moved out Castlegregory direction.

“We’re still in the start-up phase and product development, but basically it’s an online whole food snack company. We’ll be setting up somewhere between Tralee and Killarney. It’ll be geared towards the health-conscious market, people into outdoor pursuits, families into healthy-eating.”

Niall graduated in Manufacturing and Engineer Management from the ITT in 2011 and was Student Union President in 2012-2013. He hopes to have the business in operation by April next year.

Barry Liston, from Ballybunion, won Best New Start-up, receiving €20,000 investment. His business, Grasshopper Skateboards, is Ireland’s first skateboard manufacturer dedicated to revolutionizing the world of skateboarding by providing a superior and environmentally sustainable material advancement for the production of skateboards primarily selling through an interactive online store.

The winners of Best Established Business with New Add-on category and €20,000 investment were Shane Finn and Mark Evans of WK Fitness. Shane and Mark are qualified fitness instructors who have established WK Fitness, a training and gym centre in Dingle Town.

Launched this summer by the Kerry LEO, as part of a nationwide search to find ‘Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur’, the campaign encouraged young entrepreneurs under 30 to enter and be in with a chance to receive a portion of the €50,000 investment fund up for grabs. The competition was judged in three distinct categories following an intensive bootcamp and the presentation of their business plan to a judging panel.

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Moira Morrell, CEO Kerry County Council ; Niall Harty of Snaicbox, winner of Best New Idea category; Barry Liston of Grasshopper Skateboards, winner of Best New Start-Up; Tomás Hayes, Head of Kerry Local Enterprise Office; Mark Evans and Shane Finn of WK Fitness, winner of Best Established Business with New Add-on category; Michael McMahon, Director of Job Creation/Sustainable Economic Development in Kerry County Council.

 

 

 

 

 

Each Kerry winner will now progress to the Regional finals in which they will compete to go through to National finals. Ultimately, they will compete to be named Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur, at the National ceremony in December 2014.
Marking the occasion, Moira Morrell, CEO Kerry County Council said “Kerry County Council is proud to be associated with such a fantastic initiative. Kerry has always been a hub for successful entrepreneurs and these awards are a great way to showcase the creativity and ambition of emerging young entrepreneurs in the county. I wish all three winners every success in the later stages of the competition and indeed as they grow their businesses and contribute to the job-creation we need”.
Tomás Hayes, Head of Kerry Local Enterprise Office said “The aim of this initiative was to encourage and support a culture of entrepreneurship among young people in Kerry, to promote entrepreneurship as a career choice, and to encourage the establishment and development of new innovative businesses by Kerry’s young entrepreneurs.”
He continued “We would like to commend all these brave young people having decided to take the next step to making their business dream a reality, and we wish them all the very best in their entrepreneurial journey ahead. Best of luck to the three Kerry winners who will ably represent Kerry in the regional final next month; and who knows, Kerry could continue their winning steak in Dublin at the national final in December”.

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