ArcLabs Research and Innovation Centre is delighted to welcome Tom Hennessy to the team. Tom will be taking on the position of Centre Manager while Dr Aisling O'Neill is on maternity leave.

ArcLabs is the business incubator for South East Technological University (SETU) Waterford, where world-class researchers, entrepreneurs, academics, and regional stakeholders collaborate to develop innovative ideas into commercial successes, with the goal to build a robust regional economy of indigenous companies, and provide a platform for cutting-edge international companies to join the south east ecosystem.

As manager, Tom will provide hands-on support and mentoring of early stage companies as well as the operational management and marketing of ArcLabs. He will play a critical role in facilitating interaction between SETU and the start-up and SME communities, while also acting as a key interface with investors and enterprise support agencies. 

Originally from Ferrybank, County Waterford, Tom has spent the last 30 years living and working in the United States. He is an Adjunct Professor teaching entrepreneurship to graduate students at the world-renowned Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. He also has a wealth of experience owning and managing a number of businesses, and has held several senior executive positions during his professional career. Most recently, Tom was president of his own health care consulting business where he advised the United States Government on requests from states for federal funds related to designing, developing, and maintaining large IT systems tied to federal social service programs.  

Dr Aisling O'Neill has held the post of ArcLabs manager since January 2019 and is excited to hand over the reins to Tom for the next year while she nurtures her own little ‘innovator’. Of his appointment, she said, "How wonderful it is to welcome Tom home to immerse himself in the incredible entrepreneurship ecosystem that has been built in the south east during the time he has spent in the US cultivating a diverse and interesting career spanning many facets of entrepreneurship. I think Tom will bring keen insights and an expanded network to current and future clients of ArcLabs.”

Speaking of his enthusiasm for the new role Tom said, “I am excited to be back in my hometown using my experience in business and education to help SETU grow entrepreneurship, innovation, and economic opportunities in the south east.”

Through ArcLabs, entrepreneurs and companies are connected to the knowledge, skills, infrastructure and networks of regional stakeholders and investors they need to succeed. ArcLabs offers a number of enterprise development programmes which support early-stage start-ups to determine the value and application of their business idea, validate their market and test the potential of their ventures.

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