Reaching new heights at the launch of The Entrepreneurs Academy..

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell-O’Connor TD officially launched the rebrand of The Entrepreneurs Academy at an exciting event held at The Entrepreneurs Academy Training Centre in Smithfield, Dublin.


The business community came out in their droves, along with industry leaders and budding entrepreneurs to celebrate the rebrand from QED Training to The Entrepreneurs Academy, as well as honouring the service and the very many business successes supported by the Academy to date.


Since it was established 18 years ago, The Entrepreneurs Academy has trained and supported the start and growth of over 30, 000 small businesses. The Entrepreneurs Academy is designed to help SMEs at every stage of their development and business growth.


Speaking at the event, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell-O’Connor TD commended the work of The Entrepreneurs Academy: “I am delighted to support the rebrand of the Entrepreneurs Academy. Your vision is aligned with the vision of our Entrepreneurship Policy Statement. We want more businesses to start, scale and survive and the only way this can be achieved is to make sure people have the knowledge and support they need. As Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, I am always looking at new ways of supporting and facilitating entrepreneurs so that we can encourage more people to start their own business which will ultimately create more jobs. I wish Joanne and her team every success.’’ The rebrand from QED Training to The Entrepreneurs Academy reflects the current reality of the supports that the Academy provides – it is more than a training company – it’s a nationwide movement on track to change the face of small business in Ireland. Speaking at the event, MD and Founder of The Entrepreneurs Academy, Joanne Hession, a portfolio entrepreneur and recognised leader in entrepreneurship development in Ireland, stated “Today we celebrate the thousands of entrepreneurs that have come through our doors and how proud we are as a team of the impact we have had on entrepreneur development nationwide for over 18 years.”


The lively launch event was buzzing with excitement and admiration as past participants from the Academy showcased their successful businesses on the night. Some of the highlights included Fay Geldof Downey from High Society, who provided the wow factor as she greeted guests on stilts as they arrived; Eoin Hynes, award winning Tenor who serenaded the crowd throughout the evening; Rory Finegan from Beyond Accounting who spoke about his business success and experience at the Academy; Darragh Murphy from November 7 films, who showcased his famous show reel throughout the evening which included his U2 ‘Miracle’ music video; Michael Carney from Raindrop Drinks, who spoke about where he sees his company going in the next few years; and Paul Sneyd from Cloud café, who supplied mouth-watering treats to guests who had a sweet tooth.


Joanne continued “As you can see when you look around the room today we continue to have such a wide range of interesting projects and businesses that have come out of the Academy across a number of different industries, and this is something we are so proud of. Being at the heart of entrepreneurship in Ireland has allowed us to form strong new relationships with corporate clients enabling us to further our impact on start-ups and SMEs nationwide through delivery of creative new initiatives and we look forward to continuing this work for many years to come.”


The Entrepreneurs Academy programmes are run for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs, with a strong focus on mentoring. The programmes are practical and focus on giving participants the skills, knowledge, networks and confidence they need to create and drive a lucrative business.


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