OpenBack wins prestigious ESB Spark of Genius Award

Today, OpenBack has won the highly coveted ESB Spark Of Genius Award at Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal. OpenBack fought off tough competition from fellow Irish tech start-up finalists Wia and Parkpnp to win the €25,000 cash prize.

OpenBack is creating a new standard in mobile notifications to drive engagement while putting the users first.

 OpenBack, along with runners up Wia and Parkpnp, were selected after an intensive process which saw them compete within a group of 12 other start-ups live on air on 2FM’s The Eoghan McDermott Show.

The final stage of the competition saw the three pitch to a world class judging panel on Web Summit’s Pitch Stage in Lisbon. Judges included John McKiernan, ESB, Brian Caulfield, Draper Esprit, Petra Kolesarova, Equus and Laura Erickson, Swissnex.

David Shackleton, Co-Founder at OpenBack, commented: "This is huge for OpenBack. From exhibiting here at Web Summit, to pitching our product to top-level prospective customers, investors and media, this has been a game-changing opportunity for us to grow our business. Seeing off stiff competition from the other extremely worthy finalists to win the ESB Spark of Genius Award is the pinnacle of our experience here. The €25,000 prize will make a big difference to OpenBack."

John McKiernan, Head of External Collaboration at ESB, commented: "Each year, The ESB Spark of Genius Award recognises the exceptional standard of technology-led start-ups in Ireland. OpenBack is a deserving winner and a perfect example of a company that has innovated to harness the opportunities that new technologies bring. It’s that commitment to innovation that ESB shares and seeks to champion at every opportunity - the same commitment that underlines our determination to develop ground-breaking energy solutions for our own customers."

The ESB Spark of Genius Award provides a platform for high potential technology start-ups who have been in operation for less than three years and have received under €1 million in funding. Entrants are judged on the uniqueness of their idea, their level of development thus far, and their potential for future growth. Past winners of the ESB Spark of Genius Award include Bizimply, Love & Robots, Viddyad, Datahug and SmartThings.

More than 50,000 attendees are attending Web Summit 2016. Speakers this year include: John Chambers, Executive President at Cisco; Gary Vaynerchuk, CEO and Founder at VaynerMedia; and Linda Boff, CMO at General Electric. Leading Irish speakers include Andreea Wade, Founder of; Dermot Williams, CEO at Threatscape; and Eamon Leonard, Founder of Cohort. 


Join the conversation today on using the hashtag #ESBSparkOfGenius.