The winners of the 2023 Irish Sport Industry Awards, hosted by the Federation of Irish Sport in association with Financial Broker, were announced at an awards ceremony at Dublin’s Westin Hotel last night.

Deputy Niamh Smyth TD, Chair of the Oireachtas Committee on Tourism, Arts, Sport and Media delivered the keynote address to an audience of representatives from across the sports sector.

The 11 award categories recognise the value that sport adds to the Irish economy from the sports industry perspective, in addition to celebrating the ongoing work done by national governing bodies and local sports partnerships to promote sport and physical activity nationwide.

“There were 100 nominations this year, the quality of which was higher than ever before, and the decision-making process the toughest yet,” said Rob Hartnett, Founder of Sport for Business and Chair of the Judging Panel.

“The winners are true leaders in what they do and the sector has to be among the most vibrant and innovative in Ireland.

The Sport industry in Ireland supports 64,000 jobs and stimulates €3.3 billion in household spending. For the full list of winners see below.

The Awards for Best New Sports Business of the Year and Sports Business of the Year went to Output Sports and Irish American Events Limited.

Output Sports has grown rapidly from a laboratory idea to a wearable that provides instant actionable data to sports people with Premier League and NFL Clubs as well as US Masters Golf Champion Jon Rahm.  To get to that level in such a short period of time is incredible.

Irish American Events have built the Aer Lingus College Football Classic into an important date on the Irish and US Sporting Calendars.  This August they will see 40,000 US visitors, the largest ever for a sporting event in Europe travel over for the sold-out Notre Dame Vs Navy game at the Aviva Stadium.  Theirs is the classic public-private partnership drawing in commercial partners and the Government to create a week-long festival that goes way beyond sport in its importance.

The coveted award for National Governing Body of the Year went to Swim Ireland.

Swim Ireland has had a transformational year by taking a new approach to achieve their goal of having an ‘An Island of Swimmers’. They have made great strides in the area of inclusion and prioritised the life skill of swimming with a particular focus on increasing opportunities for people regardless of their age, ability, background, or location.

The winner of the Outstanding Contribution to Irish Sport Award for 2023 is Frances Kavanagh.

Over the years, Frances has continued to help create opportunities for athletes with disabilities by pursuing a programme of participation and performance. Frances has worked tirelessly across many organisations and her commitment to Special Olympics Ireland has been second to none.

The Jimmy Magee FIS/ASJI Sports Coverage of the Year Award, was presented to Rónán Ó Coisdealbha.

Rónán is head of sport at TG4, a position that he has held for 25 years. Under Ronan’s guidance, TG4 has continued to spearhead the TV station’s outstanding coverage of a wide range of sports – local, national and international.

This year saw the introduction of the inaugural Women in Business in Sport Award, in partnership with KPMG.

This award is to recognise sustained excellence by a female professional working in business related to sport on the island of Ireland that has delivered innovation, growth, leadership, impactful campaigns or standout services in the industry.

The inaugural winner was Dr. Fiona Chambers.  She has been a senior leader in higher education for more than 30 years with a real focus on sport and innovation. Over that time she has developed expertise across many areas of business including in strategic design in multinational educational environments and human-centered innovation.

The two awards with the greatest number of nominations were those recognising initiatives to promote Incusivity and Women in Sport and Physical Activity.

The winners had to be of the highest standard and we got that with Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council’s Cycling For All and Golf Ireland’s Level Par initiatives.

“Congratulations to all the award winners this evening.,” said Mary O’Connor, CEO of the Federation of Irish Sport.

“The awards are a celebration of the ongoing work done by national governing bodies and local sports partnerships to promote sport and physical activity nationwide. They also serve to recognise the invaluable relationship between business and sport in Ireland and the value that sport adds to the Irish economy. It is important to the Federation to highlight this and give prominence to the business of sport.”

“In a time of digital dependency and excessive screen time, the immense physical and psychological value of sports and active participation in community-based teams and associations is more important now than ever to society,” added Liam Carberry, CEO of Financial Broker, the main commercial partner of the awards.

“The Irish Sports Awards celebrate and recognise a diverse section of organisations, individuals, and capabilities that influence the structures and development of sport in this country, and I congratulate all award winners on the pivotal role that they play in this process, from the grassroots up.”

Full List of Award Winners

Best Sports Sponsorship
Electric Ireland, GAA Minor Championship ‘This is Major’

Best Use of Communications Platform in Sport
Basketball Ireland, Game Digital Scoresheet-Swish All Hoops App

Best Initiative to Promote Women in Sport & Physical Activity
Golf Ireland – LevelPar

Best Initiative to Promote Inclusivity in Sport & Physical Activity
Dún Laoghaire – Rathdown Sports Partnership, Inclusive Cycling For All

Local Sports Partnership of the Year
Laois Sports Partnership

National Governing Body of the Year
Swim Ireland

Best New Sports Business of the Year
Output Sports

Best Sports Business of the Year
Irish American Events Ltd., Aer Lingus College Football Classic

Women in Business in Sport Award, in partnership with KPMG
Dr. Fiona Chambers

The Jimmy Magee Award for Sports Coverage of the Year
Rónán Ó Coisdealbha, Head of Sport TG4

Outstanding Achievement for Contribution to Irish Sport Award
Frances Kavanagh


The judging panel for the 2023 Awards was chaired by Rob Hartnett of Sport for Business and consisted of industry leaders Maeve Buckley, Jill Downey, Ciaran Medlar, Patrick Murphy, Kevin Moore, Alma Balbirtie, Nora Stapleton, Brenda O’Donnell and Aisling Hubbard