The opening of this extension brings the total incubation footprint at CIT to over 3,000m2, providing Enterprise Development Supports to 44 companies.
The success of the Rubicon Centre has coincided with the success of entrepreneurial activity, particularly at undergraduate level, with CIT students featuring in the top five of the Enterprise Ireland Student Enterprise Awards over the last five years.
Companies based at the Centre employ 185 people, operating in knowledge based companies across a wide range of sectors including ICT, International Traded Services and New Media, Energy and Environment and Bio-technology.
The majority are focused on International opportunities in European and US markets.
Speaking at the ceremony CIT President, Dr Brendan Murphy, said the opening represented another important milestone in terms of strengthening CIT¹s commitment to innovation. ³Since we moved to this campus in 1974, CIT has been an increasingly important source of support for industry in the region.
Our recent history saw a new development with CIT instigating the GEP (now Genesis Programme) in 1997 with a number of partners. This was unique in the country in terms of bringing local stakeholders together in a partnership to support entrepreneurs and start-up companies.
CIT¹s first modest incubation facility on the Model Farm Road became home to Genesis in 2002. In 2006 CIT opened this Rubicon Centre. This is a purpose built incubator on a prime site on the CIT campus. All of this has been achieved using significant funding from Enterprise Ireland which is greatly appreciated. Enterprise Ireland has been a key partner of CIT¹s in all of its enterprise support endeavours. The Cork Chamber of Commerce and Cork City and County Enterprise Boards have also been hugely supportive of the Rubicon centre and its client companies. The Rubicon is a prime example of what can be achieved in terms of third mission activity in third level institutions when the various stakeholders work together.
CIT¹s contribution to the development of the Smart Economy is multi dimensional. An important aspect of this contribution is the building of a Strong Innovation Ecosystem here in CIT.
This Ecosystem has three main features:
· CIT Strategic Research Clusters and Applied Research Centres.
· Technology Transfer and Commercialisation support which provides a
vital link between CIT¹s research activity and the economy.
· CIT¹s Rubicon Centre, incorporating business incubation, training and
business support for technology led start-ups.
The appointment of our Entrepreneur in Residence, Mr Kieran Moynihan, earlier in the year underlines the commitment of the Institute to encourage the overall level of entrepreneurship in CIT across students, staff and our enterprise development programme activity. By embedding a successful entrepreneur on campus, CIT benefits from his knowledge and experience and he acts as a role model for staff and students to start their own businesses.²
This project has been jointly funded by CIT and Enterprise Ireland with the support of the Irish Government (under the National Development Plan 2007
2013) and the European Union through Ireland¹s EU Structural Funds Programme 2007 2013.