Source: Irish Times by Ciara O'Brien
Nine small Irish companies have been awarded EU funding to develop business ideas, ranging from a new food flavouring to technology for water safety and surveillance testing.
The companies are being awarded Phase One funding under Horizon 2020, which gives them a lump sum of €50,000 to carry out a feasibility study, which includes drafting a business plan, three days of business coaching and free business acceleration services.
Toggam Enterprises, based in Meath, is developing hexafly black soldier fly protein and oils for fishfeed.
In Dublin, Rathfarnham-based Gavin & Doherty Geosolutions is developing a decision support tool to manage earthworks along road and rail networks, while Sonarc Innovations will use its funding to develop a full audio frequency range, massless speaker technology platform, which will provide immersive and powerful sound from a smaller device. A third Dublin-based firm, FlowForma, has also been awarded funding to develop business process management tools to make automatic decisions, while Allogen Biotech is developing a patch to diagnose allergies. Another Dublin firm, Helic Ireland, is developing crosstalk analysis for microchips.
Two Cork companies, Milis Bio and Sothic Bioscience, have been awarded funding, with the latter developing a replacement for the quality control reagent of pyrogen testing in the medical and pharmaceutical industries, while Milis Bio is developing a sweet protein for use as flavouring in food and drink.
The final recipient was BioProbe Diagnostics, a Waterford-based company that is developing a new technology for water safety and surveillance testing.
The nine firms join 56 other Irish companies who have been granted the phase one funding since 2014.
Phase two brings between €500,000 and €2.5 million in funding to successful firms, allowing them to fund demonstration, testing, piloting and scaling up. However, companies that are successful in obtaining phase one funding are not automatically guaranteed phase two support.