Remember to apply for INVENT 2021 competition, with a £25,000 top prize

  • Time is running out to enter this year's INVENT tech innovation competition, with just one week to go until applications close.

    The annual INVENT competition helps promote local innovation with a series of cash prizes and awards for Northern Ireland's most innovative start-ups and proof of concept tech projects. The competition this year has a total prize pool of £47,000, with a £25,000 prize for the overall first place winner.

    The competition is organised by local tech and science hub Catalyst and sponsored by partner Bank of Ireland, with an increased prize pool this year. Each category winner will win £5,000 and the top place winner will get an additional £20,000 to make their invention a reality. Applications close next Friday 23rd April.

    RELATED: INVENT 2021 competition is back with £47,000 in prizes for new tech inventions

    Winners will be chosen by a panel of tech industry and business experts and will focus on ideas that have the greatest global commercial potential. Previous winners include proof of concept projects in fields from environmental sciences and medical technology to consumer electronics and cloud IT platforms.

    The categories this year are:

    • Greentech – "Products, solutions and tech that enable a sustainable future."
    • Health and Wellbeing – "Improving the quality of life through pushing the boundaries in life sciences, med tech and health promotion."
    • Product – "A physical product designed and fabricated to offer the consumer or business a novel innovative solution."
    • Business Software – "Computer software products or solutions used to satisfy the needs of an organisation rather than individual users, including innovations in sectors such as fintech, insurtech and cyber security."
    • Consumer Software – "Consumer software is a class of commercial software that is sold directly to end-users as opposed to businesses."

    The final winners will be decided at a hybrid INVENT Awards event streamed live from ICC Belfast on September 30. The finalists will be invited to give live elevator pitches of their tech to the panel of judges and in front of online spectators. Last year's event drew a crowd of over 1,500 people from around the world, including some big names in the global tech industry.

    RELATED: Cancer therapy tech named overall winner of INVENT 2020

    Niall Devlin Head of Business Banking NI at Bank of Ireland, commented: "The pandemic has accelerated innovation materially, in particular the design and adoption of technology solutions across all business sectors, including in our own business. We see this in our customers as many are reimagining and reshaping their businesses for the world, post pandemic. Whether it relates to remote working, e-commerce or health & wellbeing, businesses are striving to become more digital, more efficient and more sustainable for the future."

    Kerry McGarvey, programme manager for INVENT, commented: "We’re really excited about this year’s INVENT Awards and want to receive entries from entrepreneurs and innovators from across Northern Ireland. We’re confident that the new categories offer us the best opportunity to capture the energy and creativity of the next generation of founders who are aiming to solve real world problems, with the new Greentech category particularly relevant as sustainability becomes an increasing focus both globally and locally."

    To apply for the competition or learn more about it, head over to 

    Source: Written based on press release


    About the author

    Brendan is a Sync NI writer with a special interest in the gaming sector, programming, emerging technology, and physics. To connect with Brendan, feel free to send him an email or follow him on Twitter.

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