5 NI start-ups selected for global accelerator programme

  • 10 start-ups have been selected to participate in IgniteNI's global accelerator programme for growing tech companies, including four Belfast-based businesses and one Derry firm. 

    Through the three-month Accelerator Programme, each start-up will receive between £23,000 and £28,000 in financial support, over £250,000 in credits from companies such as Stripe, Amazon and Intercom, investor lunches and nine months of office space in Belfast’s Ormeau Baths.

    Demand for this year’s programmes was extremely high, with IgniteNI receiving interest from 1100 start-ups across 35 countries.

    Belfast teams from this year’s programme include Eolas Medical, a company harnessing the world’s medical knowledge to support global healthcare equity and PulseAI, a platform transforming cardiovascular diagnosis through artificial intelligence (AI). 

    The sole representative of Derry, Respiratory Analytics, uses a sensor technology and data analytics tool to control respiratory symptoms.

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    Following their recent success on IgniteNI’s early-stage start-up pre-accelerator, Propel, five alumni have been selected for this year’s IgniteNI Accelerator.

    The 10 participants focus on several sectors including healthcare, fintech and hardware, and are as follows: 

    • BreatheHappy, Buckinghamshire, UK – BreatheHappy is an AI-assisted posture-correction platform for live-at-home yoga classes. 

    • CropSafe, Belfast, NI – CropSafe is a satellite data-powered platform that provides actionable insights into farmland, which was founded by John McElhone and Micheál McLaughlin.

    • Eolas Medical, Belfast, NI – Eolas medical is a physician-led Medtech start-up founded by Dr Declan Kelly to harness the world’s medical information towards a future of equitable healthcare. 

    • Kniterate, Boston, US – Kniterate is a compact digital knitting machine designed for small fashion businesses, design studios, maker spaces and schools. Kniterate allows users to create and customise knitwear products like scarves, sweaters and dresses.

    • Konvi, Berlin, Germany – Konvi is an investment platform that enables users to invest in rare, high-end luxury items such as watches, handbags, art and cars.

    • LegitFit, Cork, Ireland – LegitFit is a software platform designed to streamline the process of managing fitness and health businesses while reducing cancellations and improving revenues. 

    • MedAll, Belfast, NI – MedAll strives to be the career passport for healthcare professionals. The platform enables medical professionals to store certificates and collect teaching, patient and multi-source feedback in a single location.

    • PulseAI, Belfast, NI – PulseAI is a Medtech platform founded to transform cardiovascular diagnosis through AI. The company specialises in AI-powered arrhythmia detection that enables better patient decision-making.

    • Respiratory Analytics, Derry, NI –, Respiratory Analytics uses sensor technology in an inhalation training device, combined with cloud-hosted data analytics to help control the symptoms of those with respiratory symptoms. 

    • X-15, Sussex, UK – X-15 is an enterprise asset management solution. The company builds industry-specific software systems for commercial and military clients. 

    The programme is supported by economic growth agency, Invest NI.

    Its Director of Technology Solutions, Stephen Wightman, said: “Once again, we see an excellent group of companies from Northern Ireland and further afield selected to take part in the Accelerator programme, which continues to grow in strategic importance as a key element in Northern Ireland’s burgeoning start-up economy."

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    IgniteNI Programme Director Chris McClelland, added: “There is a real sense of momentum here. Year on year the quality and approach of start-ups is getting better, reinforcing our belief that Northern Ireland’s reputation as a great place to start and grow a business.

    "Over the last three years, we’ve seen a seismic shift in the venture capital that’s being invested in these companies and we believe this cohort is going to give us another leap forward.

    “We’re pleased to see groups of companies working in similar spaces and we think the work being done in healthcare is worth celebrating.

    "We’re confident that each of the start-ups chosen for this year’s IgniteNI Accelerator will make enormous contributions to the economy and society, both in Northern Ireland and further afield. We’re excited to see how they progress and grow over the coming months and to see their impact inspiring the next generation of founders.”

    IgniteNI’s Accelerator Programme has previously featured start-ups that have successfully raised over £16m in funding, including Cloudsmith, SidequestVR, MedAll, Datch and Payhere.

    Scott Wylie, Co-Founder of Payhere, commented: “The assistance and guidance that is given by the mentors and external guests at IgniteNI provide early-stage companies with the opportunity to speak with people who have been there and done it all. They will challenge you, in a good way, with only one objective and that is to help you succeed.”

    About the author

    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

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