Emerging companies recognised for sowing the seeds of success
Two Northern Ireland firms have been recognised by the largest business competition on the island
InterTradeIreland's Seedcorn Business competition - now in its eighth year - has a total prize fund of €280,000 (£239,000) and previous finalists of the competition have gone on to secure more than £100m worth of equity since taking part.
In the best emerging company category, Portstewart-based instaGiv triumphed, while LamhRoe Ltd - which is based in the Northern Ireland Science Park - took home the best high growth company title.
As regional finalists, both firms receive a prize of €20,000 (£17,000) and will now proceed to the all-island finals to be held in Belfast on November 24, joining eight regional winners from the other three regions - Connaught and Leinster, Dublin, and Munster.
Established in April 2009, LamhRoe Ltd develops leading-edge sensors and communications sub systems for the security and medical markets.
The company has set its sights on international growth and intends to extend into Europe, Asia and the US with its product, which is more cost effective than competing products.
InstaGiv was founded in November 2009 by Michael Carlin who returned to Ireland three years ago after a 20-year financial services career in Belgium, France, Hong Kong, India and the US.
He spotted a gap in the market for his product instaGiv which uses mobile technologies and social media to help charities maximise the potential of fundraising and donor interaction.
Liam Nellis, chief executive of InterTradeIreland, said that LamhRoe Ltd and instaGiv were "worthy" Northern Ireland winners "making innovative advancements in their respective sectors".