Nova Leah has picked up the Grand Prix Startup of the Year Award, scooping a €10,000 cash prize, at the National Startup Awards 2018 powered by Bank of Ireland and Enterprise Ireland. The Awards took place on Thursday, 17 May at the Mansion House in Dublin.

Nova Leah, founded by Anita Finnegan, was also named overall winner in the Emerge-Tech category. A Dundalk-based company, Nova Leah has developed a cybersecurity risk analysis system which provides an automated solution for implementing and maintaining cybersecurity requirements across medical device products.

Other successful tech companies included:

  • iKydz won the gold award in the Tech Startup category. IKydz is a web/mobile application that allows a parent/guardian to manage a child’s Internet usage
  • Hooke Bio won the gold award in the Medtech Startup category. Hooke Bio has developed a unique UHTS microfluidic platform which allows unlimited drug screening at the crucial early drug discovery phase
  • ID-Pal won the gold award in the Fintech Startup category. ID-Pal is a SaaS (Software as a Service) solution for KYC that enables businesses to verify their customer’s identity simply, securely and conveniently
  • AudiosourceRE won the gold award in the Research Spinout/3rd Level category. AudiosourceRE has developed innovative technology for separating and manipulating music and audio files

The competition recognises innovative, successful and aspirational Irish startup companies who have launched their businesses in the last five years. This year, awards were presented to deserving winners across 13 categories including tech, retail, product and tourism with gold, silver and bronze winners being awarded in each category.

Gavin Kelly, CEO Retail Ireland, Bank of Ireland, said,

“We are delighted to partner with the Startup Awards for the fifth year running. The awards provide a platform to promote young companies on a national stage. As the largest lender to the Irish economy we are committed to supporting new and emerging entrepreneurs as they grow and develop their business and we have been incredibly impressed by the high standard of entries that have come through this competition. On behalf of Bank of Ireland, I would like to congratulate all of our winners and runners up.”

Joe Healy, HPSU Divisional Manager, Enterprise Ireland, said,

“Enterprise Ireland supports Irish companies with global ambition to grow their businesses and to scale internationally, with a particular focus on innovative start-ups. Encouragement and mentorship are fundamental elements of our support system and for this reason, we are delighted to partner with the National Startup Awards. The Awards provide these companies with the foundation from which they can grow and thrive within the start-up ecosystem. It is always exciting for us to see the quality of start-up companies emerging across the country and the innovative ideas and products they are bringing to the fore, and I look forward to seeing what is ahead for this year’s winners and runners up.”

Commenting on the Awards, Stephen Dillon, Founder of, said,

“Once again we were amazed and inspired by the quality and passion of the Startups involved in this year’s awards. With the National Startup Awards we are proud to recognise and reward the very best of Irish startup businesses. A vibrant Startup eco system is essential to every economy and judging by the quality of this years competition the future for Irish Startups is very bright indeed. We hope that all of the participants enjoyed the experience and we look forward to watching their progress over the coming years. Well done to all our finalists and congratulations to this years winners. ”

For more information on the awards visit or the Bank of Ireland Twitter account @BOIbusiness using the dedicated hashtag #Startupawards.

If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at [email protected] or on Twitter: @SimonCocking

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