New accelerator for mature entrepreneurs launched

Ireland Smart Ageing Exchange (ISAX) has announced the launch of ‘Ingenuity’, a new accelerator programme targeted at mature business owners aged over 50 who are seeking to scale-up their businesses.

The one day a week programme, which is running in conjunction with DCU Ryan Academy and is sponsored by Bank of Ireland, is spread over nine weeks and is designed to specifically address the challenges facing business owners. It includes workshops, bespoke mentoring and excellent networking opportunities. Bank of Ireland and ISAX are calling on ambitious entrepreneurs with fewer than ten employees to take part.

Self-employment and entrepreneurship offers many potential benefits for individuals and the economy in general. Twenty-five per cent of those who are self-employed in SMEs, which account for 99.7 per cent of all active Irish business enterprises, are in the 50 to 64 age group.

“It’s a myth that scaling your own business is only for young people,” says Chief Executive Officer of ISAX, Anne Connolly. Recent research undertaken by future-focused market research company Amárach revealed that more than one in five over-50s had some experience of setting up their own business and 17 per cent of those with experience set up their business when aged over 50.

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Niamh Collins, COO of DCU Ryan Academy says: “There is a perception that entrepreneurship is a young person’s game but the reality couldn’t be further from it. We support an increasing number of mature entrepreneurs who are key players in Ireland’s business world. We look forward to welcoming the selected Ingenuity accelerator participants to the DCU Ryan Academy and to work with them to grow their business.”

Pictured: David Merriman, head of enterprise development at Bank of Ireland; Peter Dunne, co-founder of Carbon Conversion Technology Ltd; and Anne Connolly, CEO of ISAX. Image: Naoise Culhane