June 21, 2024

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Meath native wins €10,000 at Enterprise Ireland Student Entrepreneur Awards


Annie Madden founded FenuHealth with her sister when they were in secondary school. Today, the company employs 11 people and exports to 15 countries.

Annie Madden has scooped the top prize at this year’s Enterprise Ireland third-level Student Entrepreneur Awards.

The student of University College Cork was one of 10 finalists. She received €10,000 as part of her prize, which she was awarded at a special ceremony held in Dublin today (10 June).

Future Human

Along with her sister Kate, Madden is co-founder of Meath-based FenuHealth. The pair laid the groundwork for the business while taking part in the 2020 BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition when they were in transition year. Kate Madden spoke about the sisters’ founding journey at a Future Human pop-up event during the exhibition.

Today, FenuHealth produces powdered supplements for horses and ponies. The supplements are added to the animals’ feed to help prevent and resolve stomach problems.

The company has a range of nine products and exports to 15 countries. It counts five royal families among its customers.

As well as the prize money, the Maddens will be mentored by Enterprise Ireland. FenuHealth employs 11 people. Annie Madden runs the company while completing her studies in Cork.

The Grant Thornton High-Achieving Merit Award and €5,000 went to Alannah Pardy. The South-East Technological University student is founder of Recapture One, a cloud-based multimedia company specialising in the development of personalised bereavement memorials.

Ronan McArt and Roisin Lydon, lecturers at St Angela’s College scooped the Enterprise Ireland Academic Award.

Along with the prize money, the winners will also share in a €30,000 consultancy fund that will enable them to turn their ideas into a commercial reality. This year marked the 41st year the awards were held.

Richard Murphy, manager of the LEO support, policy and co-ordination unit at Enterprise Ireland, said the awards represented “an important starting point for many as they embark on their entrepreneurial journey.”

Minister of State for Trade Promotion, Digital and Company Regulation Robert Troy, TD, added his congratulations to the winners and finalists. “The calibre of the entries this year are a credit to the student entrepreneurs and their institutions. The projects presented today address a range of challenges facing Irish society from sustainability and the environment to health and wellness with innovative solutions to not only meet the needs of an Irish market but with potential global appeal also.”

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