Teagasc AgTech Gateways 2019

The application of ICT and precision technologies is transforming not just agriculture but the development of supplies and services supporting agriculture and therefore the production of food globally. Through accurate measurement of a wide variety of parameters and data management, we are now better able to account for the variability that nature brings to agriculture leading to more sustainable, environmentally friendly and profitable farms and the creation of the nutritious foods consumers are demanding. Teagasc is leading Ireland’s large scale efforts in the area of collaborative innovation in partnership with industry in the AgTech sector.

Teagasc is delighted to showcase our AgTech capability to industry through the AgTech Gateways event in our Ashtown Conferencing Facility in Dublin. Come see our showcase of AgTech capabilities and platform technologies in areas such as crops, pasture-based farming, dairy, remote sensing and sustainability. Hear from international experts about emerging trends in AgTech, new market opportunities and investment strategies.

Background: Teagasc hosts two Gateways events a year alternating between our Dublin (Ashtown) and Cork (Moorepark) sites. The focus is on outreach and engagement with Irish-based industry to showcase the AgriFood and AgTech R&D capability and licencable technologies Teagasc has available. The format is one of short talks from international experts in innovation and R&D followed by lunch, networking and demos/exhibits. The linkages forged in our Gateways often develop into future R&D collaborations and technology licences.


10 – 11 Registration and networking

11 – 1 The event will be opened by Teagasc’s Chairperson, Liam Herlihy. Speakers include Teagasc’s Associate Director of Research, Declan Troy, outlining Teagasc’s AgTech capabilities followed by speakers on investment trends in AgTech (Aidan Connolly, CEO at Cainthus), why Ireland is becoming a centre of AgTech innovation (Michael Stapleton from IDA Ireland), Future Scenarios for Smart Farming (Simone van der Burg, Wageningen University) and the current AgTech research landscape in Ireland (Donagh Berry, Director of VistaMilk – an SFI/DAFM Research Centre).

1 – 3 Lunch and exhibits and the opportunity to network and speak with Teagasc researchers in each of our AgTech areas.

Date And Time

Thu, 16 May 2019

10:00 – 15:00 IST

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Teagasc Ashtown Food Research Centre


D15 DY05 Dublin


National IP Protocol aims to add ‘competitive edge’

At the National Intellectual Property (IP) Protocol briefing in University College Cork, photographed were: Dr. Rich Ferrie, Director, Office of Technology Transfer, UCC, Dr. Alison Campbell OBE, Director, Knowledge Transfer Ireland and Dr. Charles Garvey, CEO, Metabolomic Diagnostics, UCC Spinout company. Photo By Tomas Tyner, UCC.

Knowledge Transfer Ireland (KTI) kicked off its national roadshow to present the IP (intellectual property) Protocol 2019 to businesses and researchers around the country in UCC this week. It was also presented in Limerick, Galway and Dublin.

It provides a practical, best practice framework for businesses, from start-ups and SMEs to large multi-nationals and entrepreneurs to access and utilise Irish research to drive economic growth.

The protocol, which is in its third edition, is produced and managed by KTI on behalf of the Department of Business, Enterprise & Innovation.

The protocol sets a benchmark for good practice in the commercialisation of valuable IP, on terms that are fair to researchers and business alike, and in ways that are predictable and consistent from one negotiation to the next.

The IP Protocol has been a reference point for business and research communities since it was first produced in 2012. The previous protocol was published in 2016. The new protocol includes a dedicated section on best practice in the formation of spin-out companies. It also includes a summary of the issues relating to state aid in the commercialisation of research.

Charles Garvey, CEO of Metabolomic Diagnostics, a Cork-based spin-out company shared his experience of growing a spin-out company at the event.

Minister Halligan, Minister of State at the Department of Business Enterprise and Innovation and the Department of Education and Skills said: “The commercialisation of public research to drive innovation and Ireland’s economic competitiveness is a key pillar of the Government’s innovation strategy, Innovation 2020. While investment in research performing organisations the length and breadth of the country is critical, it must go hand in hand with an effective strategy to put that research into the hands of businesses for the benefit of the Irish economy and society. The National IP Protocol is a key element of that strategy.”

“We welcome the launch of the updated National IP Protocol with the additional guidance on spin-out companies. Forming spin-outs is an important aspect of our knowledge transfer activities at University College Cork. Having this guidance in the public domain will go a long way to managing the expectations of academic entrepreneurs, spin out managers and investors as they seek to grow these innovative new companies.” Dr Rich Ferrie, Director, Technology Transfer, UCC.

Alison Campbell, Director of KTI said: “The new section on spin-out company formation developed in consultation with people operating at the coal-face is particularly welcome and was drafted to address a gap in the framework. The range of practical tools produced by KTI that are referenced throughout the protocol and its associated resource guide have been expanded.

“The aim of these tools is to provide relevant resources that demystify knowledge transfer and allow commercialisation and collaboration to flourish, while protecting the interests of all parties.”

The National IP Protocol 2019 comprises two documents:

– the policy document sets out the framework underpinning research collaboration and access to intellectual property from state-funded research

– the resource guide which provides an overview of the national IP management guidelines and links to a wealth of resources and template documents that support these guidelines. It also provides an overview of the knowledge transfer structures in Ireland.

For more, see www.knowledgetransferireland.com/managingIP

Showcase for High Potential Start-ups

Enterprise Ireland yesterday (14 February) announced that it had invested €23m in Irish start-ups in 2018 at the annual Enterprise Ireland showcase for High Potential Startups (HPSU) held at Croke Park in Dublin.  Among the figures shared by Enterprise Ireland at the event included citation of supporting 132 companies, establishment of 82 high-potential start-ups (HPSUs), 50 Competitive Start Funds secured and 15 spin-out companies from third-level institutions. Additionally, Enterprise Ireland said that there were 28 women-led HPSUs, as well as 26 HPSUs that received follow-on investment funding as their business scaled.

The annual event was attended by hundreds of entrepreneurs and investors and was all about putting the class of 2018 on display. There was strong representation from University College Cork including five startups from UCC’s IGNITE  programme: Fiona Edwards Murphy, CEO, ApisProtect Limited, Mike Sheehan, CEO, MilisBio; Conor Lyden, CEO, Trustap and Marie Therese Shortt, CEO,CulturePro who is currently a participant on the New Frontiers Programme at CIT.

CIT spinout AudioSourceRE was once again exhibiting this year. The company is the culmination of over 18 years of research into sound separation by Dr. Derry Fitzgerald (CTO), whose company vision is to become the leading developer of high-quality music de-mixing software for music and post-production studios, DJ’s, producers, artists, and musicians.

“Enterprise Ireland’s strategy for 2017-2020 is to support more start-ups with global ambition to build scale and expand reach,” said Joe Healy, divisional manager of the HPSU unit at Enterprise Ireland.

“Now at the halfway mark into our four-year strategy, we are on course to meet the ambitious target of creating 60,000 new jobs by the end of 2020. Key to reaching this target is cultivating an environment for more entrepreneurs to develop their business and succeed.

“Working with the government and our partners, Enterprise Ireland will continue to support and nurture an ecosystem that ensures the availability of appropriate supports including finance, mentorship, peer-to-peer learning platforms and access to overseas markets, priming early-stage businesses and entrepreneurs to grow,” Healy concluded.

“I would like to congratulate the start-up class of 2018 and we look forward to continuing to work to help them scale into international businesses in the coming years.”

For more information see https://startupshowcase.enterprise-ireland.com/

UCC play hosts to Spin-out Roadshow

There was standing room only at the recent Spin-out roadshow hosted by UCC in partnership with CIT,  Atlantic Bridge and Bank of Ireland which saw entrepreneurs and researchers gather to hear about the funding supports available to Irish startup companies.

On Thursday 29 November, UCC hosted a spin-out roadshow in partnership with CIT,  Atlantic Bridge and Bank of Ireland which saw over 60 entrepreneurs and researchers gather to hear about the funding supports available to Irish startup companies.

The event, held in GatewayUCC, centred around a panel discussion from CEO’s of UCC and CIT start-up companies, who shared candid advice and insights from their own startup journies. Guests were welcomed by Dr. Anita Maguire, Vice-President, Research & Innovation, UCC  and Dr. Rich Ferrie, Director, Office of Tech Transfer, UCC.

The panel, introduced by Myriam Cronin, Manager, UCC Gateway, included Dr Alan Holland, CEO, Keelvar Systems, Declan O’Mahony, ex-CEO, Heartsine and Entrepreneur in Residence, Tyndall, UCC Pat O’Connor, CEO, OrthoXel and Dr. Ray Alcorn, CEO, Exceedence . The panel discussion was facilitated by Stephen Moran, Head of Innovation & Research at Bank of Ireland

Each of the companies spoke about the various funding tools and supports they engaged with all their growth trajectory. Some of the insights and advice about fundraising by generating solid cash flow, venture capital, funds, crowdfunding and Enterprise Ireland are captured below:

It takes 10 years to grow a business; not all funds can support you through that time frame

Cashflow is King; there is no better form of raising funds than through cash flow.

Get business validation early

Incubate for as long as possible; make sure you incubate the tech for as long as possible

Typically, will always give away 30% equity no matter what way you are fundraising

Don’t forget about the soft supports such as the accessibility and supports available through Enterprise Ireland’s global network.

VC’s bring credibility to the business, especially when you’re operating internationally

Investors bring governance to your business

VC’s aren’t looking to solve your business problems; they are looking for an opportunity to capitalise on and to help you to commercialise.

Crowdfunding is essentially a digital marketing campaign. About 60% of the work is done before you go live.


For more information about the supports for research-based start-ups at UCC please contact Myriam Cronin, Manager, UCC Gateway at myriam.cronin@ucc.ie