iOTA Inspiring Innovation Road Show

12 December 2013

'The benefit of innovation to small businesses' was the key message at the iOTA Road Show in Down Business Centre on Wednesday 4th December 2013.  iOTA helps people understand what innovation in business is, why it is important, and what helps businesses can get. Funded through the EU's INTERREG IVA Programme iOTA offers a wide-range of innovation support to local businesses under two strands, including training, road shows, innovation mentoring and advice, workshops, clinics and master classes.

As well as attracting local businesses the Road Show's attendees included local authority representatives, business support organisations and higher education colleges.  Down District Chairman, Cllr Maria McCarthy, welcomed guests said,

"The iOTA Programme is seeking to demystify the process of innovation and will help build innovation into local companies' activities.  The iOTA Programme is an exceptional opportunity for potential new or existing businesses in the Down area, and within the wider East Border Region, to learn more about innovation and develop their innovation capability by accessing new skills, expertise and knowledge.  The aim is to target as many SMEs/individuals as possible to enhance their innovation capacity and thus contribute to the competitiveness of the East Border Region.  Individuals and companies in Down looking to develop their business should be looking at iOTA". 

The iOTA Programme is about encouraging the development of new ideas leading to improved new business services or internal processes as well as new product development, thereby, adding value and generating small business growth and development. 

Janice Symington, Manager of Down Business Centre welcomed the opportunity for guest speakers Paul Miller from Horizon Two Six and Niall Greenan of Smart Bunker, an innovative storage bunker designed and developed in Castlewellan, to give some innovation advice and direction to businesses throughout the day.

The iOTA Programme is open to individuals, SMEs and micro enterprises in the following council areas in Northern Ireland - Ards, Armagh, Banbridge, Craigavon, Down, Newry and Mourne and North Down as well as Counties Louth and Monaghan in the south of Ireland and will be delivered by a cross border consortium led by Newry and Mourne Enterprise Agency.

For further information or to participate on the iOTA Programme, please contact:   Janice Symington, Down Business Centre on Tel: 0044 (0) 28 4461 6416 or Email:

Pictured left to right: Niall Grennan, Smart Bunker, Paul Miller, Horizon Two Six  and Chairman of Down District Council, Maria McCarthy.   

  • Monaghan
  • LCC
  • MCC
  • Newry, Mourne and Down District Council
  • Ards and North Down Borough Council
  • Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council