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Invent is an annual competition to showcase local innovations and ideas that have the greatest commercial potential.

What Is Invent?

The Invent competition has been widely recognised as one of the best opportunities for innovations and proof of concept ideas that have the greatest commercial potential.

It’s an opportunity to gain high-profile exposure; to validate your idea and to unlock a quality network of influencers. There’s also a prize fund of £33,000 shared by the winners.

Invent Awards Night 2019

The Invent Awards Night 2019 took place on Thursday 10th October and music tech startup Signal Optimiser was crowned the overall winner after year filled with several rounds of pitches, assessed by independent expert judges.

Creator, Lewis Loane from Newtownards, scooped a prize package of £13,000 (from the overall prize total £33,000) and is well on his way to having his product recognised as a must-have for serious music aficionados.

More than 700 business executives, entrepreneurs, investors and student innovators joined together for our evening of networking, great food, elevator pitches, presentation of Invent awards including the Innovation Founder 2019.

Why Invent?

Invent provides a great opportunity for entrepreneurs to gain high profile exposure and recognition and to market validate their ideas. To express an interest in entering Invent 2020 please email our Events Manager Karen Hall

You will get support throughout the process including support from mentors with a range of valuable experience.


Contact Information

Name: Kerry McGarvey


Tel: 07825165933

Invent 2019 Winners

Electronics & Overall Winner

Signal Optimiser

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Creative Media and Consumer Internet Winner

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Life & Health Science Winner


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Engineering Winner

Concrete Jungle

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Enterprise Software Winner

Obbi Solutions

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Agri Science Winner


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Innovation Founder Award

The INVENT Innovation Founder Award is Catalyst’s highest honour, celebrating individual success stories that continue to inspire future generations of innovators and entrepreneurs. The Innovation Founder 2019 Award was awarded to NI tech pioneer Denis Murphy, co-founder and CEO of cloud service company Anaeko.

He has more than 20 years’ experience in IT and mobile telecoms, founding and managing a number of locally based tech companies including Apion and Mobile Cohesion. Recipients have achieved distinction over the years for founding, leading, or advancing a Northern Irish life sciences or technology-based business organisation. Such entrepreneurs have contributed to our region individually and through their organisations to the business sectors that shape our local economy and improve our quality of life.

Previous Winners:

  • 2019 Denis Murphy
  • 2018 John Rainey
  • 2017 James Leckey
  • 2016 Sir Martin Naughton
  • 2015 Brian Conlon
  • 2014 Dr William Wright
  • 2013 Dr Peter Fitzgerald
  • 2012 Tom Eakin
  • 2011 Hugh Cormican
  • 2010 Prof John Anderson

Invent Steering Team

Clare Passmore


David Brownlee

HSC Innovations

Neil Buchanan


Robyn Wilson

TechStart NI

Niamh Griffin

Bank of Ireland

John Macrae

Ulster University

Paul McGuickin

Carson McDowell

Jason Wiggins


Bregeen Campbell