Irish centre named as Top University Associated Business Incubator

Business, Employment | Mon 1 Feb | Author – Business & Finance
GEC Award
Pictured (L-R): Michael Culligan, business manager, Dublin BIC; David Varian, chairman, Guinness Enterprise Centre; and Minister Richard Bruton TD

The Guinness Enterprise Centre (GEC) has been ranked the world’s Top University Associated Business Incubator in the prestigious UBI Global rankings.

Selected from the 1,200 incubators worldwide, the GEC scored 78 out of 100, compared to a global average of 53. Contribution to job growth, support for graduate start-ups and collaboration with a large investor network were highlighted among the GEC’s top attributes.

The GEC is managed by Dublin BIC, which also manages the AIB Seed Capital Fund and Halo Business Angel Network (HBAN), helping start-ups become investor ready, access finance and grow their companies domestically and internationally.

The UBI Global World Top University Business Incubator and Accelerator Rankings assess university incubators around the world and rank them according to value for ecosystem, value for clients, and attractiveness.

The GEC works closely with top universities and institutions in Ireland, including Trinity, DCU, DIT, UCD Smurfit and Ballyfermot College of Education. More than 90 start-ups call the GEC home, with an additional 70 support companies housed in the centre. Many of these are graduate-led companies, started through collaboration with various universities.

More than 370 people work in the incubator, with close to 1,000 employed globally by the start-ups it houses.

Speaking about the award, David Varian, chairman, Guinness Enterprise Centre, said: “We understand that our ability to help commercialise projects was a key factor behind our success. Working closely with universities has been a core part of what we do since the GEC was born in 1999. We hone the talents of ambitious graduate start-up leaders from Ireland and abroad to give them a base, help them develop their skills, and connect them with the right people to grow. Ireland is a globally recognised start-up hub and we’re delighted to play a part in this and be recognised for our work.”

Eamonn Sayers, GEC manager, added: “The whole team at GEC is overjoyed with this and being recognised and ranked highest among incubators across the globe is a phenomenal achievement. We look forward to continuing to play a key role in the evolution of Dublin as a global entrepreneurial hub and to welcoming further Irish and international start-up and growth companies to our GEC community.”