University of Galway IdeasLab Start100 programme celebrates student entrepreneurs

From left, Jenny Mullery, IdeasLab; Helen McBreen, Partner at Atlantic Bridge and judge of the competition; Paul Merriman, CEO Fairstone, judge and prize sponsor; members of the winning team LambCam, Michelle O’Donnell, Shan Pereira and Maria Comas; Chloe Heffernan of Glo By Chlo and the ‘One to Watch’ awardee; Evelyn O’Toole, CEO CLS Labs and judge; and Neil Ferguson, IdeasLab. Credit – Martina Regan.
Jun 30 2023 Posted: 10:25 IST

Lambcam were named overall winners with Glow by Chlo Cosmetics recognised as the ‘One to Watch’


University of Galway IdeasLab has concluded the 2023 edition of its highly acclaimed Start100 programme, showcasing the innovative ideas of 12 teams of aspiring student entrepreneurs.

The final showcase event on campus saw teams pitch their unique ideas to an expert panel of judges from academia, research, industry, and enterprise in front of an audience of students, mentors, enterprise and University of Galway staff.

The winning entry for the 2023 Start100 programme was LambCam for their software to help farmers monitor sheep’s behaviour on camera during lambing season, securing €5,000 in funding.

Glow by Chlo Cosmetics was recognised with the One to Watch award of €1,000, affirming their potential for future success.

The Start100 programme is an intensive six-week programme run out of University of Galway’s IdeasLab – the student innovation hub, open to all disciplines, located at the heart of the campus. Start100 connects students into a thriving community of innovators and entrepreneurs across Ireland and culminates in the showcase event, where each team present their ideas.

This year, the varied group of student entrepreneurs had ideas ranging from an app designed to improve your rowing capabilities to beauty and skincare products.

Teams underwent a transformative entrepreneurial journey, nurturing their ideas and focusing on how to best leverage their network and funding opportunities for future success. With the guidance and support of mentors, speakers and the vibrant start-up ecosystem in Galway and across the country, the students developed and validated their business models, developed their networking skills and built a peer-to-peer community to support one another to develop and grow.

Professor Pól Ó Dochartaigh, University of Galway Deputy President and Registrar, said: “University of Galway is committed to transforming our values of excellence, respect, sustainability and openness into actions and deeds. Today we witnessed that first hand through our students in their pursuit of societal impact through enterprising ideas. The University, in partnership with our business community, plays a crucial role in nurturing their growth and supporting our people and our planet and we are incredibly proud of our student entrepreneurs.”

Dr Natalie Walsh, Director of Entrepreneurial Development at University of Galway, said: “We are excited to see a surge in interest in entrepreneurship across our campus. The Start100 teams have truly impressed us with their exceptional quality and innovative ideas, serving as a testament to the remarkable success of the programme. We are committed to leveraging our achievements and exploring new collaborative partnerships to maximize opportunities for our student entrepreneurs."

The judging panel for the final event included: University of Galway Vice-President Engagement Dr Paul Dodd; Chief Executive of Complete Laboratory Solutions (CLS) and scientist Evelyn O’Toole: one of Ireland’s leading financial advisors and internationally recognised Certified Financial Planner Paul Merriman; one of the Top 100 Women in STEM in Ireland and Partner at Atlantic Bridge - Kauffman Fellow Helen McBreen; and Aerogen Chief Executive and founder John Power.


Marketing and Communications Office


Featured Stories