Finalists for EY Entrepreneur of the Year award announced

The finalists employ more than 2,700 people between them

Finalists for EY Entrepreneur of the Year award announced

Image: Ernst and Young

The finalists in the race to become this year’s EY Entrepreneur of the Year have been announced.

The list includes dome of the country’s top business minds – with this year’s 24 finalists employing more than 2,700 people between them.

Their businesses generate a combined €150m in revenue every year.

The closing stages of the competition will see the finalists competing across three categories – ‘Emerging,’ ‘Industry,’ and ‘International.’

The finalists were shortlisted from over 110 nominations around Ireland by an independent judging panel of previous winners.

The panel was chaired by Anne Heraty, CEO of CPL Resources, and winner of the 2006 award.

“Every year the calibre of nominees intensifies, and this year has been no exception,” she said.

“We as judges take enormous pride in supporting the backbone of the Irish economy by highlighting Ireland’s most innovative, brave, and ambitious entrepreneurs.

“Without doubt the greatest strength of the community is the incredible opportunity that we have to learn from each other’s experiences.

“I am delighted to welcome this year’s 24 finalists into the EY Entrepreneur of The Year community and wish them the very best at the beginning of an unforgettable journey through the programme and beyond.’’

Now entering its 21st year, the programme aims to connect entrepreneurs and champion entrepreneurship throughout Ireland.

Some 67% of people who have engaged with the programme now do business with each other.

This year’s finalists are now set to join more than 70 previous contestants for a CEO Retreat in London and Oxford in May.

Many of the sessions will focus on the challenges and opportunities posed by Brexit.

2018 EY Entrepreneur of the Year finalists:

Emerging Category

  • Darragh McCarthy, FinTrU, Antrim
  • Paddy Finn, Electricity Exchange, Limerick
  • Joe Wiley, Amryt Pharma plc, Dublin
  • Patrick J. Rigney, The Shed Distillery of P.J. Rigney, Leitrim
  • Elaine Sullivan, Carrick Therapeutics, Dublin
  • David and Sandra Whelan, VR Education Holdings plc, Waterford
  • Eoin Leonard, i3PT Certification, Dublin
  • Noel O'Hanlon, Genesis Automation, Cork

Industry Category

  • David Maxwell, Boojum, Antrim
  • P.J. Flanagan, H&MV Engineering Limited, Limerick
  • Dominic Fitzpatrick, The Irish News,  Antrim
  • Bill Wolsey, Beannchor Group, Antrim
  • Vicki O'Toole, JJ O’Toole Ltd, Limerick
  • Louise Kennedy, Louise Kennedy, Dublin
  • Gareth Chambers, Around Noon, Down
  • Rachel Doyle, Arboretum, Carlow

International Category

  • Peter Keeling, Diaceutics, Louth
  • Tony Richardson, Venn Life Sciences, Dublin
  • Peter Coppinger & Daniel Mackey, Teamwork.com, Cork
  • Ray Cole, Virginia International Logistics, Cavan
  • Barry Napier, Cubic Telecom Limited, Dublin
  • Mary McKenna, Tour America/Cruise Holidays, Dublin
  • Damien McGovern & Pat Lynch, Compliance & Risks Limited, Cork
  • Aine Lecky & Eibhlin Murphy, Major Equipment  (Intl) Limited, Mayo