Ryanair family funds Irish tech startup scheme

Ryanair family funds Irish tech startup scheme

While Ireland is stuck in a world of economic pain right now, it seems the entrepreneurial spirit of the country’s startups is alive and well.

A new $1.3m accelerator scheme is currently taking on applications from early stage tech companies. Propeller has been founded by the Ryan Academy for Entrepreneurship, a partnership between Dublin City University and the Ryan family (yes, that’s the same Ryan family of budget airline Ryanair fame).

The fund is looking to incubate up to 24 startups over the next two years in a format similar to the successful US Techstars scheme, with experienced mentors helping entrepreneurs build their companies. Each company will get €30,000 funding and incubation space in Dublin for the duration of the programme. The scheme has so far been funded by the Ryan family, with $2m more hoped to be raised in coming years.

The scheme is open to startups from across Europe. Gordon McConnell, Deputy CEO of the academy explains that the depressed economy there might actually be a good thing. “Ireland is now a cheaper place to do business, with 12.5% company tax and wages have been pushed down as has the cost of living – so Recessions and Bailouts may be good for entrepreneurship.”

“Ireland and Dublin in particular is also home to many large corporates and we intend to leverage this in terms of introductions and mentors.”

Applications for the scheme are open until 10 January 2011, with the first round running from February to April. You can apply for the scheme here.

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