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Sport Industry Awards

March 7, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

The 2018 Sport Industry Awards will take place on March 7th, celebrating the best that sport and the business behind it have to offer.

This year’s awards are being run again by the Federation of Irish Sport, under new Chief Executive Mary O’Connor and are being supported by JLT Ireland.

Sport for Business is proud once again to be on a high powered judging panel including Cliona O’Leary of RTE Sport, Athlete Louise Galvin, Rory Sheridan of Diageo Ireland, Liam Harbison of the Sport Ireland Institute, Larry Fenelon of Leman Solicitors, Cathal Dervan of the ASJI, Amanda Harton of JLT, Deirdre McDermott of OSK Solicitors, Mark Doyle of AIB and John Aherne of GolfGraffix.

We were honoured to win the Award last time out for Best Emerging Sports Business and it is an opportunity for organisations to consider their achievements and put themselves forward for the prestigious recognition.

The Awards celebrate the contribution of sport to Ireland’s economy both directly and indirectly. The 12 biggest mass participation events in Ireland, for example, have an economic impact of more than €46 million generating more than 91,000 bed nights for the Irish economy.

Some 21% of all tourists in Ireland engage in some form of activity with sports tourism valued at between €350 & €800 million to Ireland each year.

€255 million is the combined spend on club membership each year and an additional €200 million is spent annually by fans on jerseys and memorabilia.

More than 40,000 jobs are supported by Irish sport whilst tourism is one of the sectors that most benefits.

The twelve award categories touch on the many diverse elements that make up the Irish sports industry and include:

  • Sport business of the Year
  • National Governing Body of the Year
  • Sports Event of the Year
  • Best commercial partnership of the Year
  • Best local sports partnership of the Year
  • Best sports journalist of the Year
  • Best Sports media outlet of the Year
  • Best digital engagement community
  • Best Sporting innovation of the Year

There will also be an award for lifetime achievement/outstanding contribution by an individual.

As well as Sport for Business last year’s winners included some of Ireland’s biggest sporting events and corporate sports sponsors including Lidl, Paralympics Ireland, Cork Local Sport Partnership, the SSE Airtricity Dublin Marathon and Race Series, Aer Lingus, and Allianz.

“As President of the Federation of Irish Sport, I am delighted to be part of the Irish Sport Industry Awards and look forward to celebrating those who have achieved excellence within a growing and increasingly thriving sport sector,” said Dublin All Ireland Winner and successful businessman in his own right Bernard Brogan.

“I would encourage all of those involved in the business of sport to embrace the Awards and enter in at least one of the categories to highlight the vital role they play, and the passion and energy they have brought to the sector over the past 12 months.”

“These Awards spotlight the people and partners that drive the business of Irish sports forward,” added Federation CEO Mary O’Connor, winner of 12 All Ireland Medals.

“The sector continues to be reliant on the funding of partners and sponsors despite making a significant economic contribution to GDP, so it’s imperative we recognise the diversity of the sector and the contribution it makes to Ireland’s economy.”

“From sports business of the year, and the best sports event, to sporting innovation of the year and NGB of the year, the Awards reflect the varied makeup of Ireland’s sports industry and the power of sport and business working together.”

Those words certainly resonate in this corner of the sporting and business world.

“I am delighted to be part of this year’s Irish Sport Industry Awards which recognises the increasing contribution that sport is making to the Irish economy,” said Michael Murphy who was involved in yesterday’s launch.

“Being both a competitive footballer and a sport business owner myself, it is fantastic to see all the great work that businesses around Ireland are doing within the sector.”

“It is important to recognise and celebrate the vital contribution that these businesses are making both directly and indirectly to Ireland’s economy.

The closing date for entries is Monday, 5th February 2018.


March 7, 2018
7:00 pm - 10:00 pm


Smock Alley Theatre


Federation of Irish Sport