The closing date for applications for the Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition is Friday, March 15. The competition is open to anyone aged 18-35 who has a great business idea or is already running their own business. Run by the Local Enterprise Office Westmeath, it is a brilliant opportunity for young entrepreneurs to learn from business mentors, network with other young business people and possibly to win valuable investment in their business.
Liam Tutty of Dead Centre Brewing will open his business at Custume Place, Athlone, at the end of this month. Having participated in the much vaunted enterprise competition in 2016, he spoke this week of the competition’s benefits.
About Dead Centre Brewing
At Dead Centre, we’re almost ready to open Westmeath’s first craft brewery, but as well as that we are creating a visitor experience that will feature brewery tours, a full bar, a pizza kitchen and artisan coffee.
Where did you hear about the IBYE competition?
I originally heard about IBYE via an email sent out from my Local Enterprise Office (Westmeath )
Why did you enter the competition?
I can understand that for many people, the prize-money is a great motivator. Although it’s definitely a nice carrot, my ultimate aim was to receive open and honest feedback from people I trusted to give it to me.
What surprised you most about the competition?
There were genuinely lots of surprises. Foremost for me was the opportunity to learn and grow. I went into the competition thinking it was a pitch to a panel and that would be followed by a set of results. In actual fact, it was a full mentoring course that told how and what to pitch, how to frame your business in the best possible light and a great lesson in ‘short but sweet’. Get across everything you need to as concisely as possible, which has stood to me ever since.
How did you and your business benefit from being involved in IBYE?
Again, the prize money did not hurt! My background is in marketing, so having the ability to drive the fact we were involved in IBYE with local radio stations and publications was the biggest single benefit for me. The column inches we received out-weighed the prize fund in my opinion. If you’re getting involved, be prepared to blow your own horn!
Why do you think a young entrepreneur should enter this competition?
It’s a really excellent way to connect with other entrepreneurs, increase the confidence in your proposition and how to frame it and receive feedback that businesses pay large sums of money to consultants for.
And finally, what piece of advice would you give to anyone thinking of entering this competition?
Enter immediately. A very worthwhile, rewarding and exciting competition that I wish I was still sprightly enough to be involved with.