University of Limerick student Philip Hayes has won the Deloitte Top Technology Talent Competition for the website he has developed; Goforagoo.com. The site is a novel social networking website that explores aspects of user interaction both on a virtual level and on a physical level. Philip has just completed his final year of the BA in Business Studies program.
The website is aimed at 18 – 35 year olds, with a particular emphasis on third level students. The technology the site would utilise includes Web 2.0 and cloud computing. In addition, geosocial networking will play an integral part, in relation to organising user details such as locations and interests, in addition to targeted advertising.
Speaking about Philips win, Harry Goddard, Partner, Technology Integration, Deloitte said: “Congratulations to Philip on being named Ireland’s Top Technology Talent. Myself and the other judges were not only impressed with Philip’s idea, but also the fact that he had developed his technology strategy in terms of exploiting the capabilities of cloud computing, Web 2.0 and geosocial networking. In addition, he had given serious consideration to the business model. From his marketing strategy to potential investors, buy in from venues, additional revenue streams and international expansion possibilities, we were all in agreement that he had presented a comprehensive proposal and that Goforagoo.com has great potential.”
As his reward for winning the competition, Philip can choose either €1,000 or four weeks’ paid work experience in Deloitte’s technology integration practice. The purpose of this is to enable the winner to further develop their idea if they so choose, or to gain valuable technology and business experience with one of the world's largest professional services organisation.
The final decision on the winner was made by a panel of industry experts. Along with members of the Deloitte Technology Integration team, Paddy Holahan, technology and business entrepreneur was on the judging panel. The students were mentored by Deloitte experts, receiving practical advice from experienced technology consultants, guidance and feedback on their ideas.
Commenting on his win, Philip said: “The idea for Goforagoo.com came to me as I felt there was a gap in the social networking market. Sites such as facebook gives users the chance to speak to people they already know, while twitter allows users to talk to people they may never know. The goal behind Goforagoo.com is to give people the chance to speak to new people and make new friends with people they could know. I would encourage any student to submit an entry into the Deloitte Top Technology Talent competition in years to come, as the whole experience, from the drafting the business plan, to presenting it to the esteemed judges has been a priceless one for me".