In the realm of Irish entrepreneurship, few names shine as brightly as Jerry Kennelly's. His journey from a photojournalist to a global business leader is a testament to his vision and dedication. 

Jerry Kennelly embarked on his career in 1981 as a photojournalist. For 15 years, he worked for a freelance agency in Tralee, contributing to both national and international publications. Alongside his photography pursuits, Jerry also played a vital role in his family's business, Kerry's Eye, a weekly local newspaper in County Kerry.

It was during his time as a freelance photographer that Jerry conceived an idea that would lead to major global success. In 1996, he founded Stockbyte, a groundbreaking company that specialised in supplying digital stock photographs to newspapers and magazines worldwide. Setting up shop at Kerry Technology Park, Jerry's venture took off.

Remarkably, within a mere decade, Stockbyte and its sister company, Stockdisc, captured a staggering 10 percent of the global royalty-free stock photography market. They achieved the highest pro-rata profit and profitability per employee in the industry, earning Stockbyte the prestigious DHL Exporter of the Year Award. In April 2006, Getty Images recognised the value in Jerry's creation and acquired both Stockbyte and Stockdisc.

But Jerry's entrepreneurial spirit didn't stop there. He ventured into the realm of technology and design, founding another company called Tweak. Tweak offers innovative solutions for design and publishing needs.

In addition to this,  Jerry Kennelly has also made a significant mark in the wider business and community ecosystem. He's been instrumental in the launch and expansion of the Junior Entrepreneur Programme (JEP), a program aimed at cultivating an entrepreneurial culture within schools, preparing young minds for the challenges and opportunities of the business world.

Jerry Kennelly is not just a successful entrepreneur; he embodies the essence of innovation and creativity. His unwavering commitment to excellence has resulted in various accolades like the Deloitte Fast 50 Awards and the Ernst & Young Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year in 2005.

Jerry's vision for Kerry as a beacon of innovation and entrepreneurship is both inspiring and achievable. At a local, national and international level, Jerry is a true pioneer, a visionary leader, and a mentor who has left an indelible mark on the world of business and entrepreneurship. His legacy continues to inspire and guide aspiring entrepreneurs on their own journeys to success.

Check out this video from the EY archives which explains the Stockbyte story in his own words: