Derry THROWS DOWN Green GAUNtLET TO entrepreneurs
A major competition unveiled today is calling for individuals in Derry to come up with smart new ideas that could lead to new green products, services and sustainable technologies.
Launched at Creggan Country Park, the Green Creativity Awards are open to anyone aged between 18 and 30 and offers a top prize of expert support and resources worth £10,000 to accelerate the best concept toward commercial development.
The competition is organised as part of the Enterprising Derry Project and is funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) under the European Sustainable Competitiveness Programme for Northern Ireland and Derry City Council.
A total prize fund worth £20,000 will be awarded to ideas showing the most commercial promise and winners will be officially recognised at an awards ceremony in November 2011 to coincide with Global Enterprise Week.
Launching the competition Derry City Mayor, Colum Eastwood, said:
“This is a fantastic opportunity for the next wave of young enterprising innovators in Derry to not only have their ideas recognised and advanced to market, but to realise and benefit from their full commercial potential. 
“Derry has a growing legacy of cutting-edge innovation. It is home to some of Northern Ireland’s leading green firms and there is a young population of bright students, graduates and postgraduate students with clever new ideas. This competition will help advance commercial innovations that will make a difference.”

The competition is the first of its kind to exclusively engage Derry’s vibrant hub of young entrepreneurs in this sector and will be judged by a panel of experts from industry and business support organisations.
Tom Brennan from leading CleanTech firm, Rural Generation Ltd., added his support to the competition and said he hoped it would help bolster the clean and green sector within the area.
“Derry companies have been at the forefront of sustainable technologies for a number of years with many exporting their ideas and solutions to lucrative global markets. It is important that we continue to provide investment opportunities and support for fresh thinking and new products.
“These awards are a valuable and timely boost to anyone interested in developing their own new ideas. The competition will give the very best innovations access to world-class expertise and cutting-edge resources. Importantly, the Green Creativity Awards will support growth and confidence in a region well-known for industrial innovation.”
Aeidin McCarter, Project Officer with Enterprising Derry, said the awards would reward entrepreneurial spirit and smart new thinking.
“The Green Creativity Awards are about empowering people with the confidence and resources to develop and advance green concepts that have clear commercial potential. This competition is a vital addition in the efforts to support and foster a culture of innovation and R&D throughout the city.
“All applications will remain the Intellectual Property of the entrant and we are calling on those within the Council area to come forward in confidence with ideas that could improve and contribute towards increased sustainability locally and further afield.”
The competition will culminate with an awards ceremony taking place in Derry in November 2011.
For further information and to register on-line log on to
The closing date for submissions is midday on 24th June 2011.