Top 10 Greatest Entrepreneurs in Ireland 2015


Do you stand in front of the mirror as you get ready for work and try to think of some invention or innovation that is going to revolutionise the world and make you millions? A lot of people do, and here are ten of them from Ireland who have managed to make their dream true.

1. Simone Rocha

Simone Rochabusinessoffashion

Hailing from Dublin Ireland, Simone Rocha has been rapidly climbing the ladders of the fashion world. With stores in London, New York, Ginza and Beijing, it all started when she completed her BA in Fashion at The National College of Art and Design in Dublin, as well as graduating from Fashion MA at Central Saint Martin’s College in London. Making her fashion debut at London Fashion Week in September 2010, Rocha has since received numerous awards including the Emerging Designer British Fashion Award and the Best Future Fashion Wallpaper, both in 2013.

2. James Whelton


A coder, a hacker, and clearly a brainiac. Whelton is the creator and founder of Coder Dojo which is a free club that allows kids to learn how to program. Creating the first Dojo back in 2011, there are now 130 spread across 22 countries, with a grand total of 10,000 kids using the free program each week.

3. Patrick Collison


Originating from County Limerick, Patrick Collison is the co-founder and CEO of a company called Stripe. Stripe is a simple online payment program that was created in 2010 with the help of Collison’s brother. The program is now being used all over the world, for example it’s being used in countries like Canada and the US, while it is also being used by companies such as Reddit and Foursquare.

4. Cristina Luminea

Christina Lumineablueface

Founder and CEO of the company called ThoughtBox, Cristina Luminea has created an award-winning company that focuses on developing and enhancing a young audience’s learning experience. Partnering with NGO’s and other brands, Luminea’s company has been able to create and distribute a series of free games that not only entertain, but also educate children.

5. Iseult Ward and Aoibheann O’Brien


Together these two women are the driving force and creators of the company FoodCloud. Basically it’s an app that allows food stores such as Tesco to upload information about their food surplus each day. The store can then put in details including a time they want the food to be collected and a message goes out to all charities that are part of the FoodCloud community. The charity can then accept the offer and go pick up the food to feed those in need.

6. Chris Kennedy

Chris Kennedyirelandsnext

Chris Kennedy is one of the brains behind the company Trustev. Basically the company uses social and other dynamic data sources to allow online sellers to be sure they are completing a transaction with a real human being. Having won the Best Start-Up award, it aims to make the online shopping world a safer place.

7. Danielle Ryan

Danielle Ryanevoke

Ryan’s family has a bit of a history in the world of entrepreneurial activity, with her grandfather being aviation tycoon Tony Ryan. However, Danielle Ryan has gone out and made a name for herself, creating the company Roads Group. The company looks after numerous things, including book publishing and launching fragrance and luxury body product lines.

8. Sophie Morris

Sophie Morristhesundaytimes

After going on a trip around the United States, Sophie Morris returned with more than a lifetime of memories, but she also had a business idea. That idea was Kooky Dough, a company that creates cookie dough which people can slice up and bake into cookies in just eight minutes. While other countries were already on to this idea, there was a gap in the Irish market, which Morris has now filled.

9. Brendan O'Driscoll

Brendan Odublinglobe

O’Driscoll is the creator of the service Soundwave, a music discovery and sharing app. With probably one of the best start-up stories, O’Driscoll was inspired when he saw a blonde woman, so engrossed in her music that she ran straight into a tree.

10. Stephen O'Brien

Stephen Obusinessandleadership

Stephen O’Brien is taking The Colonel head on with his own chain of Southern Fried Chicken. Sourcing all their food products locally, the first store opened on Dame Street.

If these young start-ups have taught us anything it’s that whatever you dream of doing is possible.