Cork Foundation, at its inaugural Founders’ Dinner held tonight in Rochestown Park Hotel, announced the two enterprises that have been selected as the first-round beneficiaries of its unique finance initiative.

Cork Foundation, which has raised close to €500,000 in donations from Cork-connected  business and philanthropy figures, was proud to announce Northside Community Enterprise and PMD Solutions as beneficiaries of the first-round funding totaling €50,000.

The non-profit organisation, which was established earlier this year by leading business figures, complements existing enterprise support services by bridging gaps in current funding models addressing many of the challenges facing Cork businesses and communities in accessing credit and bridge finance.

With the grant funding provided by Cork Foundation, Northside Community Enterprises is now in a position to employ two additional staff enabling the community enterprise to offer enhanced services at its ‘Little Hands’ Childcare Centre in Farranferris, Cork.

Meanwhile, PMD Solutions, which is based in the Rubicon business incubation centre in CIT, will use the finance injection to immediately employ three critically needed new staff to allow the budding enterprise to bring its respiratory monitoring device to market in 2014.

The innovative device is anticipated to significantly impact the global healthcare industry and is currently being trialed in Cork University Hospital.

According to Myles Murray of PMD Solutions, the financial assistance from Cork Foundation allows the enterprise to strengthen its internal resources and commercial positioning.

“We are thrilled to now be in a really strong position to ramp up our staffing levels which in turn allows me to focus on the commercialisation of our device so that we can approach market in 2014. Without this finance, our ability to enter the market was seriously hindered as our budget is extremely tight. We are very grateful and proud to have been selected as one of the first-round beneficiaries of Cork Foundation.”

Chairwoman of Cork Foundation Yvonne Barry congratulated PMD Solutions and Northside Community Enterprise whom she described as “deserving beneficiaries who characterise the community enterprise and wider spirit of entrepreneurship that Cork Foundation aims to support and help grow”.

“Cork Foundation is already having a positive impact on job creation as well as economic and social growth which our first-round beneficiaries clearly demonstrate. We are overwhelmed with the support and contributions we have received so far not just in Ireland but abroad which we feel shows the importance of our unique initiative.”

Key note speeches at tonight’s inaugural Founders’ Dinner included Minister for Health Dr James Reilly, influential business leader Sean O’Driscoll, Chairman and CEO Glen Dimplex and Chairman of the Cork Foundation Strategic Advisory Board and diaspora expert Kingsley Aikins.

Among those who attended the exclusive event were fellow Cork Foundation board members such as Anne O’Leary, CEO of Vodafone Ireland, Bob Savage, Vice President & General Manager of EMC and Áine Collins TD

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