Posted on Tuesday 18 September 2012 by Ulster Business

ITInnovationGeneral

Pictured at the launch of the Innovation Awards are Aidan Gough, InterTradeIreland, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster, Irish Times' Gerry Moriarty and Helen Kirkpatrick, Invest Northern Ireland.

The search for the most innovative organisations across the island of Ireland has begun with the launch of the fourth annual Irish Times InterTradeIreland Innovation Awards.

The awards aim to recognise and promote the best innovations within organisations of all sectors and all sizes in Northern Ireland and Ireland.
Closing date for applications is Monday, December 3, 2012, with the awards ceremony taking place in Belfast for the first time.

DETI Minister Arlene Foster MLA welcomed the awards: “Innovation is key to economic growth and that is why it underpins the Executive’s Economic Strategy. We need more of our companies, particularly our SME's, to be innovative. These awards offer companies an excellent opportunity to show how they have been innovative in developing new products or services. I hope it will also hope give inspiration to other businesses and encourage them to innovate.”

Companies can enter in one of six categories in the 2013 Innovation Awards:

• Agri-food innovation
• Life sciences innovation
• GreenTech innovation
• Business services innovation
• Social innovation
• Creative industries innovation.

Each category winner will secure a €10,000 Irish Times media deal and an iPad. They will then compete to win the overall title of ‘Innovation of the Year’ which awards the winner with a communications and advertising package from The Irish Times worth €150,000. In addition, a UCD scholarship for an Executive Education programme commencing in 2014, a state of the art laptop and a consultancy package will also be provided.

Aidan Gough, Strategy and Policy Director, InterTradeIreland, said: “These awards are rightly considered the most illustrious innovation awards across the island of Ireland, identifying and highlighting the pioneering innovation work of organisations North and South. Innovation can help your organisation grow, allowing you to meet the demands of a changing marketplace, while improving productivity, reducing costs, building the value of your brand and increasing turnover and profitability. I would encourage organisations from across the island to enter these awards and promote their innovative practices.”

For more information visit www.irishtimes.com/innovation.

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