Waterford News

VirtualVet to represent Waterford at National Enterprise Awards

Virtual Vet Enterprise AwardsAn innovative GDPR compliant data management company tracking drug usage in animals in the food chain has been named as Waterford’s Enterprise winner and will go on to represent Waterford at the National Enterprise Awards in Dublin on May 29th.

VirtualVet is at the forefront of changing drug use behaviour in the food chain by reducing the risk of misuse and overuse of animal remedies in food production.

WIT graduate Sinead Quealy astutely observed the implications and increased risks posed to human health by the overuse of antibiotics in animal farming and in 2017, following a meeting with Waterford Local Enterprise Office established VirtualVet. The data management company records dosages for famers, reports to the agri-food and animal health industries and monitors for agencies such as Bord Bia and the Food Safety Authority.

According to Sinead the assistance from the Local Enterprise Office was invaluable as it provided a feasibility grant, a platform at the National Ploughing Championships and financial assistance to help grow the business.

The Waterford judging panel had their work cut out for them as six pioneering companies vied for the Waterford enterprise title. The finalists included Trish’s Honey Products, Hightower Painting Products, Partyrock Travel, Special Branch Carvers and Monkey Cups.

Richie Walsh, Head of Enterprise at Local Enterprise Office Waterford, Richie Walsh congratulated VirtualVet on their award and also praised the high calibre of finalists.

“In Waterford we are lucky to have such a wealth of inventive and resourceful young enterprises. The vision shown not just by Sinead and the VirtualVet team, but by all the finalists demonstrates that entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in our city and county. The onus is on agencies such as Local Enterprise Office to support, encourage and nurture such creativity.”

“The range of Local Enterprise Office services is quite broad, so we would encourage anyone in pre-start, start-up or established phase of business to get in touch and see what supports are available.”

As well as representing Waterford in the National Finals, VirtualVet was also presented with €3,000 and a specially commissioned crystal trophy, designed and hand-cut by award-winning crystal studio, Criostal na Rinne. The runners-up were presented with engraved crystal bowls.

VirtualVet is among one of the 7,000 companies maintaining 36,000 jobs, supported by the network of 31 Local Enterprise Offices, and will represent Waterford in the National Enterprise Awards Final which was established in 1998 to celebrate the achievements of Ireland’s micro-enterprise sector.

 

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