1-to-1 time with a number of mentors (subject to availability), for 25 minutes each. You are given the opportunity to present your start-up and get your burning questions answered by experts
Founders Circle Criteria:
- Tech is at the core of your business
- You have a product or MVP to discuss with the mentors
Shane Kavanagh | Group Marketing Director at Fexco
Shane is Group Marketing Director for Fexco, Ireland’s most successful, Independently owned, Financial Technology and business solutions
providers processing more than $10 billion in transactions annually. He successfully developed and executed a marketing strategy across 26 markets covering 5 languages and 10 million customers. Core Competencies (marketing strategy, repositioning, creative and PR)
Anne-Marie Curran | Managing Director at Drury
Experienced corporate affairs and financial communications consultant with over 20 years experience advising Irish and global clients across diverse industry categories. Communications and PR skills portfolio includes strategic counsel, stakeholder engagement, reputation management, social media strategy, crisis & issues management and employer brand communications.
Sales and Early Stage Founder Insights
Joleen Looney | Co-founder at Content Llama
Co-Founder at Content Llama which is a Digital Content Gateway revolutionising how eRetailers show up online and manage their digital content. A start-up so knows the challenges that comes with that, opening a fund-raising round in September for €1.5M.
Business Development & Partnership
Liam Cronin | CEO, RDI Hub
Founders and Senior Executive 30 years expertise creating and leading projects and enterprises to success, as CEO RDI Hub, Microsoft Ireland / Western Europe numerous roles and Associate Director Commercialisation ADAPT Research Centre. Mentored high potential Enterprise Ireland (EI) start-up’s.
Software Project Management and IT Strategy
Joe Dunleavy | Senior Consultant (Innovation, R&D) at Tara Consultancy Services
An Innovation, Software Delivery, FinTech and Business lead experienced executive currently working in the role of Senior Consultant (Innovation, Architecture and Emerging Technology) with TCS based in Letterkenny, Donegal, Ireland. Joe has held several leadership roles including Innovation Head, US based Interim, CIO, Software Development Lead and Technical Project Manager.
Strategy & Business Development
Boaz Fuchs | Manager, Scaled UK GCS at Google
c-Level executive with almost 20 years of experience, mostly as Chief Operation Officer and General Manager. Recently moved to Dublin from Tel-Aviv and eager to support and guide different start-ups in their different growth stages and to contribute from his rich experience to the local tech market. Lived and worked in Beijing and Tel-Aviv and managed large teams and functions in several global companies in financial services, digital marketing and cloud technology companies. A certified lawyer, certified Investment Adviser (ISA) and holds an MBA.
Luke Savage | Head of Digital at Fexco
A Development Engineer turned Digital marketing nerd. Luke has spent the best part of a decade creating digital brand and online acquisition strategy from asset management firms and fintech giants.
Rose O’Sullivan | Strategic Finance Manager at Fexco
Rose’s area of expertise is commercial modeling, financial reporting, budgeting/forecasting and pricing/tendering.
International Expansion and Sale
Barry O Sullivan | Head of Digital at Fexco
Barry brings a strong international sales experience having worked for MasterCard Corporate in New York, Fiserve (First Data) in Florida, Western Union in London as well as Coca-Cola (HBC) as Head of Sales in both Western Russia and Siberia. Barry headed up Fexco’s European region for their Merchant Services division for several years but moved to
take up a new commercial role for Fexco’s latest innovation in building out a new global transaction services and payment business under the brand of OpenConnect4Cruise for Fexco’s new Payments and FX international division.
Advertising and Brand Development
Padraig Burns | MD at Publicis Dublin
Padraig Burns is a highly experienced business leader who has successfully operated at CEO, Director and NED level for a number of organisations. His experience includes Business Strategy, Marketing & Advertising Strategy, Customer Experience, Consumer Behaviour and Leadership Development.
Padraig started his advertising agency career in New York and returned to Ireland where he became a director of the countries largest agency at the time, McConnells Advertising. He later moved to Publicis where he heads up the Irish office of one of The Big Four marketing communication agencies in the world. During a successful career Padraig has worked with blue chip clients in every FMCG and services category. In addition to his role as MD of Publicis, Padraig has served on the board of The Institute of Advertising practitioners in Ireland and he is currently on the boards of Fishamble Theatre Company and GOAL.
John McElligott | Former MD Smartbox
MD of Smartbox Online, €60M ARR across 9 countries, Core Competencies (Leadership, Product Mgmt, Marketing, Customer Lifecycle, Analytics, M&A, Pricing, Strategy), Industry (eCommerce, Financial Services, Online Advertising, SaaS), Qualification and awards. (NED for several early stage companies
Choosing the right start up programme
Niall Larkin | Programme Manager at RDI Hub
Niall Larkin is the Programmes Manager at the RDI Hub where he has the overall responsibility for the design, development and delivery of its world class corporate innovation and start-up accelerator programmes. On the entrepreneurship side, a start-up veteran himself, Niall has worked directly with hundreds of entrepreneurs to support them in their efforts to transform their ideas into globally scalable businesses.
Senior Finance and Operations
John Gannon | Tech COO & CFO
John is a senior executive who has worked in finance, operations, product development and international sales. He has experience from large multinationals to turning start-ups into successful businesses. John has worked in Ireland and internationally with companies including Aspen Grove Solutions and Donseed, both SaaS export businesses, Janssen Pharmaceutical and Kerry Group. He is driven by the challenge of business scaling and transformation and enjoys sharing years of experience, both good and bad, with business leaders interested in growing their business. John first trained as an accountant (FCCA) but is now equally as comfortable in operations and business development.
Now running his own business advisory firm, John’s strength is in seeing the real commercial opportunity within an idea and helping clients to build, fund and execute profitable growth strategies
Commercial Modelling and Strategic Finance
Mark O’Connor | group treasury and Finance
Mark is Head of Group Treasury and Strategic Finance at Fexco. He is skilled at commercial modelling and the preparation of business and investment cases while also has experience in appraising external businesses cases seeking funding. Very experienced in the M&A space having completed numerous acquisitions and has insights into financing options and managing FX exposures. A chartered accountant, Mark also has an MBA from Henley Business School.
Niamh O’Hara | Senior UX Designer at Microsoft
Niamh is an experienced product and UX designer with a passion for aligning customer-focused design that deliver business outcomes. Helping clients answer critical questions about the value and usability of digital products early on in exploration and design stages, Niamh is equipt with skills in design thinking, lean UX, prototyping, interaction design, customer research and user testing. She is excited to share insights that help build better products and experiences for customers
Inside Sales and Customer Success
Andy O’Brien | European Director of Partnerships at Smartbox
Andy began in an econometric consultancy start-up in the UK and went onto hold numerous commercial roles in Unilever, innocent and start-up, Little Dish, before moving back to Ireland in a sales leadership role for Unilever. Since joining Smartbox he has supported rapid expansion of its retail footprint across Europe before taking on developing the sourcing function, growing it from 16 to 250.
Expertise – Inside Sales, Customer Success, Customer Service, Rapid Sales Team Growth, Retail,Start-up scaling, Developing Sales Capabilities, Pricing Strategy, Category Management, B2B selling, B2B Retention Marketing, managing large customer bases, Salesforce.com.Sectors – FMCG (Food and non-food), Tourism & Hospitality,
Qualifications – Gap negotiation & SpinSelling
AI, ML and Robotics
Ciaran Fennessy | Senior Vice President at Citi
Ciaran is an innovative and experienced senior technology manager with a background in various technology roles, delivering solutions to clients and businesses.
His areas of expertise include the delivery of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics solutions to drive efficiency and improve client experience within Citi, managing large scale and high profile client on-boarding programs and traditional financial services technology change programs.
Ciaran possess strong communication skills across all levels of the organisations and experience in public speaking on Artificial Intelligence.