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

What Is Invent?

Invent is an annual competition that recognises and rewards local innovations and proof of concept ideas that have the greatest commercial potential.

Your Innovation must fit into one of the following categories:

Life and Health Sciences
Enterprise Software
Creative Media and Consumer Internet
Agri Science

The closing date for applications is Friday 24th April

Apply here


Invent is an opportunity to gain high profile exposure, validate your idea and gain access to a quality network of influencers. There is also a prize fund of £33,000 to be shared with the winners.

If you have come up with a product idea you are passionate about then this is the competition for you.
To find out more information please contact Programme Manager Kerry McGarvey.

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

Meet The 2020 Judging Panel

This year we have another stellar judging panel for the INVENT 2020 Finals. The Panel Includes:|

Gavin Kennedy – Head of Business banking NI, Bank of Ireland UK
Dr. Michael Shaw – Managing Director, RPS Ireland Ltd.
Carmen Rico – Partner, Samaipata VC
Ian Leigh – Founder, Greenwood Way Capital
Kealan Doyle – Co Founder Symvan Capital
Andrew Aldridge – Partner & Head of Marketing, Deepbridge Capital

Read about the judges here

Key Dates 2020

24th April: Closing date for applications

27th April- shortlisting and Briefing

11th May – 15th May  – Qualifying rounds

18th May – Semi-Finalists announced

1st June – 5th June – Semi-Final

15th -19th June – Mentor day

22nd – 26th June – Funding workshop

31st July – Business Plan submission

20th August – Student Invent

27th August – Final Pitches

8th October – Awards Night

Contact Information

Name: Kerry McGarvey


Tel: 07825165933

Invent 2019 Winners

Electronics & Overall Winner

Signal Optimiser

Read More Info

Creative Media and Consumer Internet Winner

Read More Info

Life & Health Science Winner


Read More Info

Engineering Winner

Concrete Jungle

Read More Info

Enterprise Software Winner

Obbi Solutions

Read More Info

Agri Science Winner


Read More Info

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