Dr Martin O’Reilly, the co-founder and CEO of Output Sports (www.outputsports.com), a University College Dublin (UCD) spin-out company, has won the Best Business Idea Award at the national final of the 2019 Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE) competition. Representing the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Martin won the Award and a €15,000 investment, following pitches at an event held at Google’s European HQ in Dublin. Output Sports, headquartered at NovaUCD, shrink lab-grade athlete performance analytics into a wearable system so coaches can truly understand athletes and optimise their performance.
Output Sports, a spin-out from the UCD School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science, was founded by Dr Martin O'Reilly, Dr Darragh Whelan, Julian Eberle and Professor Brian Caulfield, based on research they carried out at the Science Foundation Ireland funded Insight Centre for Data Analytics at UCD. During 2019, the company’s technology has been co-developed with over 40 sports sites across Ireland, Europe and the USA including Olympic level athletics organisations, premier league, MLS and international football teams, inter-county GAA teams, European club and International rugby teams and National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) university set-ups. Among the professional athletes Output Sports is currently working with are Leinster rugby player Adam Byrne and Kilkenny hurler Cillian Buckley.
Dr Martin O’Reilly, co-founder and CEO, Output Sports said, “I am thrilled to have won the Best Business Idea Award at the final of the 2019 Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur competition, representing Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown. It is testament to the hard work and dedication of my fellow co-founders, Darragh, Julian and Brian, as we work together to translate our research outputs into what we plan to be a successful company with global reach.” “It is a very exciting time for Output Sports with our tech being trialled around the globe as we prepare to launch our first product, 'Output Capture' in the near future.”
Tom Flanagan, Director of Enterprise and Commercialisation, UCD said, “I would like to congratulate Dr Martin O’Reilly, a member of our community of entrepreneurs, on winning the 2019 Best Business Idea Award at this year’s IBYE final.” “The founders of eight early-stage start-ups from across Ireland pitched at the final and the fact that the founder of a UCD spin-out won this Award is an indication of the quality and investor potential of the start-ups emerging from UCD.” He added, “Output Sports, based at NovaUCD, previously completed our VentureLaunch accelerator programme which is designed to support the creation and launch of start-ups based on UCD intellectual property. We look forward to continue working with the Output Sports team to assist them to grow and scale.” He concluded, “The €6.5 million project to develop NovaUCD’s eastern courtyard, which has increased our capacity to house start-ups by over 50%, has just been completed. This will enable us to meet the significant and ongoing demand from ambitious entrepreneurs, such as Martin, who want to locate at NovaUCD to leverage our ecosystem to help them grow and scale their companies globally.”
The IBYE programme, now in its fifth year, an initiative of the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, is run by the network of 31 Local Enterprise Offices located in local authorities across the country and supported by Enterprise Ireland. This year the programme provided a €2 million investment fund with targeted business development supports and attracted over 1,600 applicants from across the country in three award categories, Best Business Idea, Best Start-Up Business and Best-Established Business.
Sharon Cunningham, Shorla PharmaSharon (Local Enterprise Office Tipperary) won the Best Start-Up Business Award along with the overall 2019 Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur Award. In addition Sean McGarry, Showergem (Local Enterprise Office Mayo) won the Best Established Business Award Presenting the Awards Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys, TD, said, “Irish entrepreneurs are among the very best in the world. That’s because we have huge talent in every region and community in Ireland. Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur is about celebrating that talent. The €2 million investment by Government in the competition has ensured that 185 entrepreneurs have not only received investment, but also mentoring, advice and peer-to-peer learning. “This year’s winners and wider group of finalists are the cream of the crop. They are our future business leaders, and I am delighted that we are celebrating and supporting them through the competition. They are also central to the success of Future Jobs Ireland, our whole-of-Government plan to prepare our businesses and workers for the future.”
The judging panel for the 2019 Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur was co-chaired by Paddy Flynn, Director of Trust and Safety, Google and Brian Crowley, founder, TTM Group. The other members of the panel were; Thomas Murray, Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Eoghan Hanrahan, Enterprise Ireland, Louise Ward, LEO Roscommon and Sarah Doyle, CEO of Kinesense.