About ‘StartUp Ballymun’

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StartUp Ballymun is an initiative of the Economic Development Officer, Ballymun and aims to promote enterprise and business opportunities in Ballymun and north Dublin.  By hosting a series of business startup themed events the aim is to encourage people living in Ballymun and nearby to become self-employed.  It is about encouraging all types of enterprises from startups to well established companies to consider Ballymun as a place to do business.

The initiative will showcase Ballymun as a place to do business by highlighting attributes such as its proximity to Dublin Airport, the M50, City Centre, DCU and also providing information latest news in relation to land and vacant sites.

Much of our activities will consist of inviting startups and other more established business owners to come to Ballymun, and share their experience with us.

StartUp Ballymun presents: The Business of Sports and Fitness

Wednesday 26th April 2017

Council Chamber, Civic Centre Ballymun

16.30 to 20.00

The objective of this event was to highlight the business opportunities that exist within the Sport & fitness sectors.  The theme covers a significant range of different types of business including; physiotherapy, personal fitness, coaching, sports management, sportswear, nutrition, equipment, fitness clubs, technology and much more.

The Speakers

An experienced panel of speakers described how they started, the challenges overcome, success and failures, and plans for the future.  The speakers were:

"Kick Start Movements is an all-new physical and nutritional programme for kids. The brainchild of two GAA stars (William Lowry and Michael McCarthy), Kick Start Movements, is an innovative new way to encourage physical activity, healthy food awareness and social interaction in children, delivered through childcare facilities in Ireland". 

"Be Well Physio is a dynamic and modern sports and spinal injuries physiotherapy clinic.  We offer a wide range of services including strength and conditioning, massage therapy, dry needling and orthotics in a warm and friendly environment."

Husband and wife owners Stephen and Jenny Connolly had a dream to open a café producing food that tastes great but without the bad ingredients! Located in the Phoenix Park Racecourse between Ashtown and Castleknock, and Lo-cal Kitchin Express at 14 Pembroke Street Lower, Dublin 2.

Rob Forbes is a professional rugby coach with 20 years experience coaching at all levels of the game with men, women’s and underage rugby. Career highlights have included coaching the Leinster Women’s Rugby Team and involvements with the Irish Womens Squad 2014/15. Robert is a co-founder of the Irish Rugby Institute, a professional rugby coaching company based in Dublin. 

"EVB Sport shorts, leggings & capris have a patent pending design engineered to mimic the body’s core muscles; create a comfortable ‘firming’ effect; prevents irreversible muscle and lower back damage, and reduces the risk of long term damage and protects your core" Irish Daily Mirror

Unfortunately due to an urgent business matter Annette Smith of Tennis4Kids, had to withdraw at the last minute

The presentations were followed by Q&A and there was some great engagement between the panel and the attendees.  A networking element followed the closing of the event and the speakers stayed around to meet with anyone who wished to meet them.  The event was launched by B4b chairman Robert Murphy and chaired by small business consultant & mentor Billy Linehan, Celtar business consultants.

Business supports speakers

Shane Callanan, Enterprise Guidance Officer presented on the range of business supports available from the Dublin Northwest Area Partnership and in particular the Back To Work Enterprise Allowance scheme.

Dave Connolly, Business Advisor presented on the range of financial supports available from the Local Enterprise Office Dublin City.

Business Mentoring

LEO mentors Noel McGrath, Paul Douglas & Pauline Logan were on hand to provide free one to one business mentoring.  A number of people availed of the mentoring throughout the event

What people learned?

  • Learn where the business opportunities are in the sport & fitness sector
  • Learn what it takes to set up and run a business from real life case studies
  • Learn about the different pitfalls to avoid when setting up a business.
  • Where to go to get support for your business


  • Hi Billy are there more planned and if so when, very good meeting? – Padraig O
  • -Surprisingly interesting and informative – Niall & Dee
  • Liam

    I wanted to drop you an email to compliment you on the Startup Ballymun event you held this week. It was a really well organised event but what made it great was seeing people who might not normally consider themselves as business people speak about their successful business. It was also great to have a good few of them local and from the northside. While it was an economic event you could see there was a social regen element of it also, reaching out to people who weren't necessarily academically minded. I was chatting to a guy sitting beside me who wanted to setup his own fitness business and he said, well if they can do it then so can I.

    Well done