The National Digital Research Centre (NDRC) in Dublin is currently evaluating 70 Irish and international applications to participate in its Launchpad accelerator programme for digital start-up enterprises.

The 15 most promising start-ups will be selected for the investment programme, which starts in mid-February and concludes with a year-end competition for a follow-on investment sourced from VCs and angels.

NDRC will provide up to €20,000 per project in micro-seed investment to support the founders during the programme.

After the current selection process, NDRC Launchpad participants will begin a three-month intensive mentoring and advisory programme, alongside other start-ups, innovators, engineers and investors.  At the end of this, the start-up promoters will pitch for follow-on investment.  All of them will then also have the option of a further six to nine months of development time at NDRC in Dublin’s Digital Hub.

Last year, NDRC Launchpad was identified in the top six best accelerators in Europe following a study by the US Kauffman Fellows Program. NDRC has supported the acceleration of 30 start-ups through the Launchpad programme since it was established in 2009.

NDRC is an independent enterprise, formed through a consortium of Irish higher education institutions, which promotes investment in emerging start-ups and the commercialisation of promising digital research.  It is supported by the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources and works in joint venture collaborations with industry and a range of investment partners. It has secured commercial investments of €4.8m in technology developments and emerging enterprises by third party partners in the past 18 months.