Entrepreneurs and investors urged to ‘kick start’ economic growth in the Midlands

ALMOST 100 investors and entrepreneurs attended Midlands Gateway Chamber’s launch of the Lir Investors business angel network in the Mullingar Park Hotel last Monday night.

ALMOST 100 investors and entrepreneurs attended Midlands Gateway Chamber’s launch of the Lir Investors business angel network in the Mullingar Park Hotel last Monday night.

Attendees on the night heard from Ray Byrne, the President of the Midlands Gateway Chamber, who spoke about the importance of supporting businesses in the Midlands and in particular, the newly formed Lir Investors.

Mullingar Ironman Gerry Duffy gave an inspiring talk about how business people can achieve personal and business goals by performing to an outstanding standard and by harnessing the power of positive thinking. Diane Roberts, national director of the Halo Business Angels Network (HBAN), spoke about the work HBAN do with six angel networks around the country and about the support the organisation can offer to investors and entrepreneurs.

Andrew Dunne from Kidspotter told of his experience in getting funding from a business angel network and how it enabled him to grow his business and export worldwide. Andrew stated that angel networks are the best form of funding available to businesses in Ireland today.

John Teeling, founder of the Cooley Distillery, chaired the meeting and invited questions from the floor. Martin Nally, founder of Lir Investors, explained that the network is a syndicate angel group under the umbrella group HBAN. Entrepreneurs can apply directly to HBAN or Lir Investors for funding.

John Teeling asked how entrepreneurs can fund their business while they are waiting for their angel investor to come on board. Andrew Dunne explained that there are many funding supports available including; local enterprise boards, enterprise Ireland and a Revenue Commissioners programme that enables entrepreneurs to reclaim taxes paid in the previous six years.

Diane Roberts from HBAN explained that the top sectors investors are interested in at the moment are the IT industry, mobile technology and renewable energy companies. Diane also highlighted that there are a large amount of potential angels who are interested in the manufacturing industry.

The night finished with a call to action from Martin Nally. Martin called on all investors who were interested in investing and bringing jobs to the Midlands region to join Lir Investors. Martin also addressed potential entrepreneurs and invited them to submit their proposals online.

To make a submission and for further information on Lir Investors please visit www.lirinvestors.com.