Ones to watch in 2009

Photo owned by timsepulveda (cc)

Ones to watch from 2008. 2007.

Pat Phelan
Third year in a row for Pat Phelan. The perennial one to watch, 2009 will not change that. Bigger and better year on year for man who is probably the hardest working man in Irish technology and the most generous with his time too. Some say he’s got a big head but his heart is much much bigger.

Niall Harbison
Chief spud peeler at, he was on the Dragon’s Den earlier this year and held his own. A thoroughly nice and modest chap too. Prolific videographer and blogger. He makes a mean steak and a fantastic cheese sandwich. I’ve seen Niall on Twitter, on his blog and in his videos and the amount of work and the positivity that he brings with it is admirable. His energy gives you energy. Second chef on this list, probably tells you something about the character of chefs as much as entrepreneurs. Fred Wilson and other VCs talk about the founders of a company will always have an influence on it and is going to be huge because of Niall and Seรกn alone. This is why VCs invest in people, not tech, not business plans.

John Peavoy
Networking god. Seeing John work a room is like watching an artist at work. Always the good word for people, always oozing positive encouragement to people and helping them make connections. Someone like that is always going to make an impact and John is just starting.

Paul Savage
Winner of the Geansai Gorm competition and asker of some very good questions at BarCamp Cork. We’ll ignore all the examples of good social media campaigns he named that nobody heard of though… Will he remain in Germany in 2009?

Sabrina Dent
Oi Dent, I want more than flowers for all these Blog and Web awards you’re winning. Sabrina is far from a designer or “just a designer”. She’ll get involved in what a company is doing or launching. She’ll ring her client up and bollock them out of it if they don’t blog enough or don’t convey their message properly. She’ll tell them using the words “honey” and “fucking” to sort their PR out or their business model. Sabrina Dent is an honest-to-goodness business makeover person and while she might not launch a product or specific service herself, her influence on dozens of businesses and startups means that her reach will go far in 2009.

Ciara Crossan
Ciara sprang up in 2008 at the various meetups in Cork and soon became a scene queen. Someone not at all afraid to get stuck in and approach anyone or everyone in a room. Ciara’s service is great but the real value in the whole thing is Ciara who a hell of a lot of people should get lessons from when it comes to promotions and engaging with those strangers who become your customers and friends.

Darragh Doyle
His blog was born just after the 2008 Blog Awards and he roared out of them. Darragh is going to make a bigger impact in 2009 than he did in 2008. What’s this about a book/writing deal? ๐Ÿ™‚ Darragh has covered more news items and the personal journeys of more people than most people in the media would do and he’s done it in a very natural and open way. I don’t think it’ll just be a Blog Award trophy or two in 2009 that will define his success either.

Robin Blandford and David Doran
Robin and David were already mentioned in an earlier post and are working on Decisions for Heroes. Decision For Heroes is going to be much much bigger in 2009. The big time for these lads is around the corner.

Brendan Hughes
Brendan has been working away in FBD for a while now and working hard with the No Nonsense brand online. He also chairs the IIA Social Media Working Group and does U.N. style work from time to time as well. This is a good guest blog post from Brendan. Brendan’s work with and influence on his employer on top of the advice given out by the IIA Social Media Working Group means when it comes to Marketing and PR online in Ireland in 2009, he’ll be a hub of influence. And besides all of that, Brendan is a genuinely decent guy wanting to do good, that philosophy means a hell of a lot.

Patrick Collison
We started with a Patrick, we end with one and another One to Watch from last year. Patrick and John Collison have already been well documented on this blog and Tommy is popping up more and more too. In 2009 John will be kicking ass in the Leaving Cert and fending off advances from the best colleges in the world so I think he’ll be slowed down from changing the world. Tommy will be doing that whole school thing and drumming in a jazz trio in his spare time so I think it’ll be Patrick who’ll once more make an impact in 2009. Dunno how but I have no doubt it’ll be useful and clever.

Who are your ones to watch?

18 Responses to “Ones to watch in 2009”

  1. Krishna De says:

    And of course you should add yourself Damien – from the blog awards, to the web awards, winning a Golden Spider and then setting up your new business what a 2008. 2009 I am sure will be a fantastic year for you.

    Happy New Year!

  2. Darragh says:

    Wow. I’m honoured to be in this list, especially with people who deserve it far more than me. But sure I’ll have to work to earn it now, eh? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Thanks Damien. I’d agree with Krishna there.

  3. you missed one mulley ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Alexia Golez says:

    Great talented bunch of folks namechecked. Looking forward to seeing ye change the world! ๐Ÿ™‚ Best of luck.

  5. Sabrina Dent says:

    Oi, I also HAD A T-SHIRT MADE FOR YOU, you ungrateful toe rag. What more do you want?!?!

    Seriously, a delightful surprise and rocking way to ring in my new year – thanks loads!

  6. Pat Phelan says:

    My head is only big from up close, cheers Damien a great bunch of people there.
    Only met Paul Savage once and they guy blew me away, a very smart cookie.
    Nice list
    Add yourself and Alexia Golez, I think we are going to hear lots from her in 09
    have a great year.

  7. Wow. To be named as one to watch, by the one we all watched in 2008 AND to be named alongside such a talented group of people… thanks Damien.

    I’m looking forward to 2009 for all of us who are active in this space. Everywhere else I’m seeing doom and gloom. Here, on the other hand there only seems to be optimism.

    It has been great to have met so many bloggers and social media mavens in 2008. In 2009 I’ll be watching all of the above named and of couse I’ll continue to watch Damien Mulley very closely…

  8. paul savage says:

    Wow. Head is sore here, but this mention is soothing it a little.Thanks for the mention Damien & Pat. I’ve only really beamed into things since BarCampCork in late Nov., but I really have learned alot, learned about focusing and following goals. Thanks to all those who listed to me waffle.

    Not sure about moving back just yet, it’s ski season right now ๐Ÿ˜‰
    As for those viral campaigns Rampenfest : BWM launch : and other sites like

    and the guy from mingle2 did very well from online dating is a very competitive market but in a short time he has really climbed up in the SERPS

    happy ’09

  9. John P says:

    Still blushing Damien. You are way too kind!

    I do need to work even harder on my networking though – and this namecheck really gives me the impetus to make the most of my network in 2009.

    Thanks for giving me the leg-up Damien!

    John P

  10. Agree with all! Good job!

    I would like to add… ‘Niall Smart’ (watch this space for a told ya so!).

  11. Great list Damien, some of whom I had only marginally come across and whom I will pay more attention to now ๐Ÿ™‚


  12. […] This was the first post to make it into my feed this year. It’s a goodun. […]

  13. David Doran says:

    Thanks for the mention Damien ๐Ÿ™‚
    You’re right – (Robin’s) Decisions For Heroes is going to change things in 2009 – both for rescue workers and then many more…

  14. ….checks list again ๐Ÿ˜‰

  15. […] noticed that quite a few others are making 2009 predictions. I’ve never been big on such hockery-pokery, but that said […]

  16. Just saw this today. I Cried, just a little.

    V, v honoured to get a mention here with other great names.
    Today is a very good day. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

  17. […] Names in tech and internet for 2009 Blogging and internet guru Damien Mulley profiles the Irish people in technology and blogging to watch out for in 2009. [Ones to watch at] […]

  18. […] also saw a nice mention by Damien Mulley in his ones to watch for 2009. Damien as usual was not far off the mark with people like Pat Phelan, Sabrina Dent, Darragh Doyle, […]