Richard Bran­son on the hunt for top new Ir­ish en­trepreneurs

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Business & Appointments - - FRONT PAGE - Si­mon Rowe

VIR­GIN boss Richard Bran­son is on the hunt for Ire­land’s next great busi­ness idea and bud­ding en­tre­pre­neur.

The so-called Voom Tour, which hits Tech­con­nect Live 2017 at Dublin’s RDS on Wed­nes­day, is an op­por­tu­nity for lo­cal en­trepreneurs to pitch their busi­ness ideas to Bran­son’s team and to be in with a chance to win a prize of over €5,000.

There are also 10 places on of­fer to meet and re­ceive men­tor­ing from the bil­lion­aire busi­ness mag­nate. This year is the first time since the com­pe­ti­tion was founded in 2011 that it will take to the road on a so-called Voom Bus, trav­el­ling to Dublin and Belfast, as well as ci­ties across the UK.

“It is an en­tirely merit-based pro­gramme so the most in­no­va­tive, dis­rup­tive and orig­i­nal busi­ness con­cepts are the ones that could make it to the top and ul­ti­mately present their case to Richard Bran­son in per­son,” said Paul Far­rell, vice-pres­i­dent for Vir­gin Me­dia Com­mer­cial.

“It’s a great way of tri­alling your busi­ness plan and your mar­ket en­try strat­egy,” Far­rell said. “The Voom Bus is go­ing on tour to seek out bril­liant Ir­ish and Bri­tish en­trepreneurs and to help them break down the busi­ness bar­ri­ers in their way,” said Bran­son.

“We’re bring­ing the Voom Tour into com­mu­ni­ties and chal­leng­ing peo­ple to put aside their fears and pitch their busi­ness ideas as we travel across Ire­land and the UK.

“It is a fan­tas­tic way for peo­ple to get started on what could be the most sig­nif­i­cant jour­ney of their busi­ness life.”

Vir­gin boss Richard Bran­son with the Voom Bus that will be go­ing on tour to Dublin and Belfast, as well as ci­ties around the UK

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