Jerry Kennelly founded Stockbyte and Stockdisc, two companies based in Tralee, Ireland that captured 10% of the global royalty-free stock photography market in ten years. In April 2006 both companies were sold to Getty Images (formerly GYI) for a consideration of $135 million. Kennelly’s companies produced the highest pro-rata profit and profitability per employee in this worldwide industry.
Kennelly, a photojournalist, who started his first business as a photographic news and picture agency in 1981, has been honoured by the Deloitte Fast 50 Awards and was selected as the Ernst & Young Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year in 2005. Stockbyte is also a former winner of the DHL Exporter of the Year Award. He was awarded and Honorary Fellowship for his contribution to Entrepreneurship by the Institute of Technology Tralee, in 2009 and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in economic science by the University of Limerick in 2010.
Kennelly has spearheaded the Young Entrepreneur Program (www.youngentrepreneur.ie) since 2006. 2400 students have or are in the process of experiencing the Young Entrepreneur Program, researching their concepts, producing a business plan and in some cases starting businesses while still in high school. Along the way, they are mentored and inspired by some of the most successful Irish entrepreneurs. In 2009 Endeavour, an adult version of the program was launched, selecting 15 start-ups with global potential that Kennelly and his team are guiding through the start-up trajectory. A number of those firms are trading very successfully. Completed or imminent investments now puts the value of those companies in excess of €10m.
Kennelly has collaborated with the international poverty relief agency GOAL in documenting, leading a team of photographers who documented the work of the aid agency throughout Africa and Asia. The creative images they produced are used to tell the story of victims of poverty through the media, exhibitions and calendars.
In October 2010, Kennelly led a Tweak.com sponsored team of media colleagues to Haiti to produce a set of branding still and moving images to position the country as a holiday location and emphasizing its potential for foreign direct investment. The images will be made available to the Haitian Government and international agencies who seek to reposition Haiti as a business and leisure location.
Kennelly edited and produced EYEWITNESS, a best selling coffee table photo book documenting Ireland’s social history from the 1950s to 70s in 2009 and set up the accompanying archive (kennellyarchive.com, a not-for-profit) of 250,000 images, now one of the largest online historical archives globally.
In February of this year he led a global team for the launch of his new venture, Tweak.com.
Tweak.com is the world’s largest source of customisable design today announced a partner strategy to facilitate content creation for the world’s largest printing brands. The offering is available as a Tweak hosted solution requiring no integration or a more customizable embedded version of Tweak.com’s easy to use application.
There are more than 500,000 designs customised for the particular needs of 300 vertical business types available on Tweak.com today and this number will rise to more than a million pieces by 2012. Tweak.com’s unique offering of high quality design combined with an easy interface is being offered to the world’s major print franchises and print providers who are pursuing the fast growing online print marketplace.
Tweak.com has already won a major accolade – it has been described by PC magazine as, “the simplest, most refined user experience. For small businesses looking to make a good impression without breaking the bank, Tweak.com puts high-quality stock photography, copy , and design at your fingertips.” PC Magazine has been reviewing the technology industry’s newest products for nearly 30 years, and has earned a reputation for being one of the most stringent review programs in the industry.