Fisheries and aquaculture entrepreneurs with new business ideas sought for Aquatech Innovation Studio program


Applications are sought for the fourth Bord Iascaigh Mhara (BIM) Aquatech Innovation Studio program – due to take place part-time in Kerry and Dublin, with a site visit to Bergen in Norway – later this year.

The Innovation Studio, offered by the aquaculture accelerator Hatch and supported by the European Marine Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund, is a non-equity program aimed at developing commercial scalability, technological readiness and an industry adapted to projects aimed at increasing the sustainability of aquaculture – whether in Ireland or further afield.

The 37 start-ups that have completed the programs over the past four years now employ over 160 people and have raised over €13 million to date. Participants continued to fund ventures in algae, genetics and specialized technologies for meat and seafood processors.

Successful applicants this year will have the opportunity to connect to a global network of aquaculture industry experts to validate their ideas, understand key market insights, learn how to present investments and interact effectively with clients.

Aquatech can involve everything from AI sensors and satellites to aquaculture systems for species, but it also has the ability to revolutionize small-scale production and safeguard food security.

Since the initiative was launched, BIM, Ireland’s seafood development agency, and Hatch, the company behind the world’s first Aquaculture Acceleration Programme, have together helped drive a significant increase the number and income of aquaculture entrepreneurs in the country.

This year’s in-person program has a completely new format, with participants spending two to three days a week during the month of July in Kerry and Dublin, and the program also includes a site visit to Bergen later in the year. year.

Richard Donnelly, BIM’s Director of Innovation and Development, said that Ireland is one of the world leaders in the development of aquatic technologies:

“Contingents from other countries have made visits here to see the work and innovation being done. But more importantly, Ireland also exports this expertise and knowledge, with several spin-off companies and outposts in other parts of the world.

“This program, which we run with Hatch, is a fantastic way for someone interested in the region – or an idea they want to try out – to join us and learn a tremendous amount.”

Wayne Murphy, co-founder and managing partner of Hatch, said attending Innovation Studio 2022 is a fantastic way to test out an aquatech business idea or see if it can come to fruition:

“In addition to having the chance to meet and learn from aquaculture industry experts, potential investors and business development gurus, attendees will have the opportunity to travel to Bergen to visit other initiatives, expand their international networks and experience life in one of the largest aquaculture ecosystems in the world.”

How to register

There are up to 10 places available for the studio and applications are sought from start-ups, technology innovators and academics keen to commercialize their research. Applicants should be focused on growing their business in Ireland or targeting the Irish aquaculture market, but need not be based in Ireland. The closing date is June 10.

Click on here to apply for the BIM/Hatch Aquatech Innovation Studio 2022.

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