Belfast City Council recognises 21 Under 21 Entrepreneurs to Watch

  • 21 current and future Belfast entrepreneurs gathered at the finale of the 21 Under 21 Entrepreneurs to Watch initiative at Danske Bank on Thursday, March 21.

    Designed to unearth, recognise, and fast-track 21 exceptional potential young entrepreneurs in the city, the Belfast City Council initiative offered a three-month programme of action-oriented workshops, acting as a springboard for future success for the successful participants.

    The young entrepreneurs learned, in-person, from world-leading businesspeople including Alice Thompson (Co-Founder of Social Bite and The Big Sleepout), Greg Bradley (Founder of BLK BOX), Maebh Reynolds (Co-Founder of Go-Pluggable) and Alan Mahon (Founder of Brewgooder, the UK’s fastest growing beer brand).

    Leading brands DWF Law, Danske Bank and Pacem Accounting & Tax who supported the initiative supplemented guest speakers’ experiences with practical guidance on starting and growing a business.

    During the finale, the participants had the opportunity to pitch for a £2,000 cash boost. After a host of strong presentations, the judges voted for Brogán Brady and her company Instyl as the overall winner. 

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    Speaking at the finale event, Lord Mayor of Belfast Councillor Ryan Murphy said: “I’ve chosen to champion our city’s young people during my year in office, and we’ve also made a commitment to support Belfast’s young people to fulfil their potential in our community plan, The Belfast Agenda.  21 Under 21 Entrepreneurs to Watch is all about nurturing Belfast’s young people’s entrepreneurial talent, because they’re so fundamental to our city’s future success and growth.

    “We’re not seeing enough young people starting businesses in Belfast yet – and that’s despite their obvious talent and ambition. We want to show that enterprise is a viable career option for everyone, regardless of age, or educational achievement. And while starting a business may be daunting, our council enterprise and business growth team and our wider business networks are there to support you every step of the way.

    “The young entrepreneurs who have engaged in this initiative are exceptional and I want to take this opportunity to congratulate Brogán Brady of Instyl and her peers and wish them every success on their entrepreneurial journey.”

    21 Under 21 winner 2024 Brogán Brady said: “I’m absolutely delighted to win the £2,000 prize which will help accelerate the launch of my business, Instyl. The 21 Under 21 programme is a fantastic way to learn key business skills, build a network and make new friends. I’d really recommend anyone who has an idea or an early-stage business to consider applying and taking part in the future.”

    Source: Written from press release 

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