Crystal Valley Tech Summit

WIT Arena hosts Regional ICT Showcase Thursday

Dermot Keyes

The WIT Arena will host the Crystal Valley Tech (CVT) Showcase and Summit this Thursday, October 18th, as the South East’s community of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) companies assembles to promote the region’s burgeoning reputation in leading edge technology development. Between 9.30am and 1.30pm, the Tech Showcase for second and third level students, in addition to industry members and the general public, is invited to chat with the founders, leaders and employees of over 100 regionally-based tech companies. This represents a near 40 per cent increase from last year’s inaugural event, which underlines the impact CVT has made in just over a year, indicative of both the growth, energy and collaborative levels within the sector.
The showcase also provides students with an opportunity to drop in their CVs at the event’s dedicated Internships/Work Experience stand, providing them with a chance to come and see at first-hand what these companies are creating and development right here in the South East. Over 1000 students from Waterford, Tipperary, Kilkenny, Wexford, Carlow and Wicklow attended last year’s showcase, and that number is likely to be bettered this Thursday morning.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar pictured with Crystal Valley Tech's Professor Willie Donnelly (President, WIT) and Larry Breen (Routematch).

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar pictured with Crystal Valley Tech's Professor Willie Donnelly (President, WIT) and Larry Breen (Routematch).

Between 2pm and 5.30pm, the inaugural Tech Summit takes centre stage and is open to all students, the general public and interested ICT companies, with experts in their respective fields visiting Carriganore to talk about how our futures will be positively impacted by technology. The afternoon will include a range of Advance Tech Seminars covering CyberSecurity, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), eHealth, Data Mining and Arts, in addition to relaying several digital-based success stories, underlining what has been achieved in this exciting sector to date.

“We’re open for business!”

“Thursday’s Showcase and Summit will underline that Waterford and the South East is well and truly open for business, and that we’ve got a story worth sharing with a wide audience,” said Crystal Valley Tech Managing Director, Elaine Fennelly. “We want this city, county and region to become the location of choice for more and more computing companies and professionals, and we believe an event like Thursday’s represents a significant shop window for all of our members to demonstrate that we’re here, we’re vibrant, we’re growing and we value your interest and input. This showcase is promoting a sector which first established its roots here in the South East just 20 years ago and has since created almost 100 new jobs each and every year since the late 90s.”
As WIT President and CVT co-founder Professor Willie Donnelly put it: “The transformation from a low technology economy in a short period of time is a remarkable story in which I’m proud to say that the software research community at TSSG and Arclabs at WIT acted as a catalyst for this transformation. CVT’s ambition is to make the South East one of the most open and innovative digital regions in Europe.”

Established as an umbrella group for the region’s ICT companies in August 2017, CVT has gained considerable traction over the past 14 months.
“We’re hearing directly from a range of our members that when they go to Dublin or to London on business, that there is a growing awareness of Crystal Valley Tech” said CVT co-founder and director Larry Breen.“The news about the level of activity and growth in our regional ICT sector is growing, and more and more industry professionals outside of the South East are finding out about our success stories, including Sandra and David Whelan’s Immersive VR Education, who took their company public (onto the Dublin and London Stock Exchanges) in March (already achieving market values nearing €30 million). Little over a week ago, Barry Downes of Suir Valley Ventures lead an investment round in animation company Artomatix (whose CEO Joe Blake will speak at Thursday’s summit) and it’s fantastic to have a local man making both literal and significant investment in the ongoing development of this sector.”

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