Two key appointments for digital hubs in Dublin and Kerry

Rodhán Hickey takes top tech role at Digital Hub; Liam Cronin is new CEO of RDI Hub

Rodhán Hickey, the Digital Hub’s first technologist-in-residence

Rodhán Hickey, the Digital Hub’s first technologist-in-residence

 

Dublin’s Digital Hub has announced the appointment of Rodhán Hickey as its first technologist-in-residence.

The news comes as RDI Hub, a new innovation hub currently under construction in Co Kerry, said it has chosen Liam Cronin to be its chief executive.

Formerly chief technology officer at Irish workforce management software company Bizimply, Mr Hickey has also held senior roles at tech giants such as SAP, Microsoft and AOL. A respected digital innovator with more than 20 years’ professional experience, Mr Hickey is charged with inspiring greater collaboration between companies based at the Digital Hub. He will also be highlighting new and emerging technologies to local residents participating in the centre’s community learning programmes.

“I’m excited about the role because it gives me the time and space to experiment and develop some ideas that I have been toying with for a while. I have several ideas for initiatives that I would like to introduce to the Digital Hub during my residency, including the idea of running technology showcase weeks,” said Mr Hickey.

“Larger companies have innovation labs where their employees can go to experience new technology and work through ideas that they might have. I’d like to bring the idea of an innovation lab to the Digital Hub, not only for the benefit of the client companies, but also for the wider community of the Liberties by inviting schools and community groups to themed technology showcases where they can experience things like virtual reality and 3D printing for themselves,” he added.

The Digital hub, which consists of eight buildings located in the Liberties area of the capital, was established in 2003 in the Liberties area of Dublin.

Around 75 companies, which collectively employ just over 700 people, are located at what is the largest cluster of digital media, technology and internet businesses in the State.

New head of RDI Hub

Separately, RDI Hub has confirmed it has hired the former associate director of commercialisation at Trinity College Dublin’s Adapt research centre to lead the centre.

Prior to working at Adapt, Liam Cronin worked in a number of roles at Microsoft for 25 years.

RDI Hub, which is to be located in the former Liebig manufacturing plant located outside Killorglin, Co Kerry, is focused on boosting design-led R&D, innovation, digitisation and financial services locally.

We will be located in an area that is already synonymous with entrepreneurship and technology

The hub is a not-for-profit partnership between Fexco, IT Tralee and Kerry County Council. It is supported by Enterprise Ireland under the Regional Enterprise Development Fund 2017.

“I am very excited to have joined RDI Hub to lead our mission of creating an ecosystem for innovative and fast-growing companies. We will be located in an area that is already synonymous with entrepreneurship and technology, particularly focused on the fintech sector,” said Mr Cronin.

“I am ambitious for the quality of companies that we will attract to the hub, which will be world-class in terms of the facilities and support programmes it will offer,” he added.