Niall Sets The Bar High For AIB Startup Academy Competition

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Niall Harty, Colm Cooper, AIB Business Development Manager, Tom O’Connor, Business Credit Advisor at AIB, and Joe Shannon, AIB Tralee Branch Manager, at AIB Tralee on Wednesday. Photo by Lisa O’Mahony.

A TRALEE resident has made it to the final 14 in the AIB Start Up Academy Competition with his innovative product.

Over 700 hopefuls were whittled down to just 14 finalists, who will compete for a wide range of prizes from AIB in the Light House Cinema in Smithfield, Dublin, on Thursday, April 20.

Niall, originally from Adare but living in Kerry for the past decade, will give a master pitch of his product, Origin Protein Bars.

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“It’s almost like the X-Factor of business, I suppose,” said Niall. “The prizes are fantastic. It’ll really speed us along from being an organic growth, to fast tracking us to be a more national focus business that can really start tapping into the national market. It’s a really important competition for us.”

A panel of judges will decide on the winning business, who will share in an overall prize package valued at €200k, which includes €20k cash injection as well as an advertising and mentorship package designed to bring their start-up to the next level.

There will be about 400 people in attendance at the event, with a mix of people from AIB, The Irish Times, Investors, and a lot of other key people for the startups present for the competition.

The event will be live streamed on facebook, and on a lorry which will drive around Dublin city on the day.

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