Belfast Telegraph

Texas showcase event for startups

By Clare Weir

A Londonderry company which supports budding entrepreneurs will be part of a delegation going to this year's SXSW Interactive festival in Austin, Texas.

Seedups, founded only last year, has already attracted over 300 entrepreneurs who have registered looking for funding, and over 120 high net worth investors have signed up to support them.

Over £9.2m in funding has been earmarked to help potential business startups.

SXSW Interactive last year attracted over 14,000 attendees, all interested in cutting-edge technology and interactive media.

Twitter famously launched in 2007 at the festival, and many insiders are already speculating as to what could be the breakout company from this year's event.

A Seedups team of Michael Faulkner, programmer Gavin Gallagher, and community manager Connor Doherty will attend the festival, a Mecca for many tech-savvy entrepreneurs and a scouting ground for investors.

Mr Faulkner said the team is looking forward to wooing the American market.

"We're also ecstatic at being part of what is a strong team of delegates from Northern Ireland who are a great advertisement for business in the area," he said.

Mr Gallagher added: "Going to SXSW is an honour.

"It will allow us to gauge where we are in comparison to other ventures, give us a feel for how the web will evolve over the next 12 months and allow us to hear from global industry leaders at the bleeding edge of web development."

Mr Doherty added he was eager to show what Derry has to offer in the 21st century.