Minister of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor officially announced The Cantillon Foundation, Ireland’s new foundation for entrepreneurship, in Carton House, Co Kildare on Friday 23rd September in the company of fifty top US and fifty top Irish entrepreneurs, mentors and experts who were taking part in the Innovators Summit 2016.
The Cantillon Foundation is a not-for- profit entity, set to anchor, advance and evolve the entrepreneurship environment in Ireland through policy, research, education, awareness, funding and resources.
Modelled in context of The Kauffman Foundation, which is one of the largest private foundations in the United States, with an asset base of approximately $2 billion, The Cantillon Foundation will place entrepreneurship at its core. Speaking at the event in Co Kildare, Dane Stangler, VP for Research and Policy, The Kauffman Foundation says, “We are delighted to be present at the announcement of The Cantillon Foundation and to be part of this exciting initiative here in Ireland and look forward to building bridges of entrepreneurship between the US and Ireland over the months and years ahead."
Also speaking at the launch, the co-founder of The Cantillon Foundation, Maree Helena says, “We couldn't think of a better environment to announce The Cantillon Foundation than in the company of entrepreneurs who are its heart and soul. Cantillon will do for Ireland what Kauffman does for the USA by fostering an entrepreneurial society in Ireland of economically independent individuals who are engaged citizens” The Summit theme of Scaling to go Global reflects the difficulties that all start-ups face when it comes to scaling their business."One of the most challenging issues facing entrepreneurs is scaling up to go global, in particular funding for growth and entering new markets,” comments Patrick Joy, Director Suretank Group “I welcome the Innovators Summit to Ireland as a platform for real engagement where Irelands high potential entrepreneurs can find ways of overcoming these obstacles alongside our US friends”
The Summit was the first time a collection of high potential entrepreneurs put their heads together to address issues around fostering entrepreneurship. Professor Frank Roche, former Director of the Smurfit School of Business, UCD, who was mentoring at the summit adds, “We need to delve in and help the entrepreneurs who have got past that early start-up stage and have huge potential. At the Innovators Summit 2016 we talked about these issues and addressing solutions."