New opportunities for Irish Creative Industry startups to excel globally

Pictured at the announcement of The Creative Business Cup, a prestigious international startup competition spanning more than 60 countries, which celebrates the synergy of innovation and entrepreneurship are Niamh Costello CEO of CREW (Creative Enterprise West), the Irish National Partner for the Global Creative Business Cup alongside Allan Mulrooney CEO Western Development Commission (WDC), CREW’s collaborative partner. Photo Martina Regan

The creative industries sector, with an estimated global growth rate of 7%, is brimming with potential, with startups taking the lead in this dynamic landscape in Ireland.

In a strategic move to support Irish creative industry startups in seizing global opportunities, CREW (Creative Enterprise West) has been select as the Irish National Partner for the Global Creative Business Cup.

This partnership is made possible through collaboration with the Western Development Commission.

CREW is a not for profit company established by then GMIT, The Western Development Commission and Galway Film Centre to develop and support the creative industries sectors along the Atlantic Economic Corridor.

This can include television, film, animation, game development, digital design, and many more creative enterprises with a digital and tech heavy element to them.

The Creative Business Cup is a prestigious international startup competition spanning more than 80 countries, celebrating the synergy of innovation and entrepreneurship.

It provides a platform for creative entrepreneurs, startups, and innovators worldwide to showcase their pioneering ventures to a global audience.

Participants in this esteemed competition vie for the title of the world’s best creative industry startup while benefiting from invaluable exposure, mentorship, and access to a robust network of international industry leaders and investors.

The call for the Creative Business Cup competition is specifically aimed at registered Irish startup creative entrepreneurs across various sectors, including animation, game design, digital arts, content creation, XR, interactive design, film and TV production, and startups focused on the creative digital and tech spheres.

Applications are now open, and all entry criteria for the Creative Business Cup can be found on

CREW will be hosting roadshow events at ConnectedHubs and Gteics through the West and North-West regions, and virtual information sessions for interested startups.

CREW’s Chief Executive, Niamh Costello, shared her excitement about the opportunities this Global partnership brings.

“We are thrilled to be chosen as the Irish National Partner for the Creative Business Cup. This collaboration represents a pivotal moment for the Irish creative ecosystem.”

“It will empower our creative entrepreneurs, enabling them to showcase their innovations globally while creating highly valuable connections with international mentors and investors who can propel their businesses to new heights.”

This experience includes the opportunity to pitch their business ideas at the Irish Creative Business Cup national competition, hosted at CREW’s Creative Enterprise Hub in Galway in March 2024.

Shortlisted startups will receive mentorship and a series of customised masterclasses to refine their pitches, before an Irish finalist is selected by a panel of judges.

The winner of the Irish Creative Business Cup will receive support to travel to Copenhagen to join creative businesses from over 80 countries at the global finals in June 2024.