Entertainment for Business is live this week at SXSW, where the worlds of technology, innovation and entertainment meet up for an annual gathering that draws some 80,000 to Austin, Texas.

Among them yesterday was Taoiseach Leo Varadkar who was promoting Ireland’s credentials as a tech innovator and bumping into Arnold Schwarzenegger.

There will be no harm for Ireland that Varadkar is the only world leader to make it to Austin.

Enterprise Ireland is hosting an Irish Advantage stand at the Festival where up and coming tech innovators are given a platform to promote their services.

One of those is Festy, a blockchain technology business that is finding real traction in the Festival space with its cryptocurrency compatible contactless payments tech embedded in wristbands and smart cards.

Festy are distributing the wristbands and demonstrating the technology to attendees and inviting them to attend a daily ‘Festy-val’ with performances each day at 4 pm by Irish recording artists.

“The opportunity to take blockchain technology and the new era of crypto payments to a festival of this size gives us unique insights into scaling our product, which is undoubtedly the largest challenge for startups in the blockchain industry,” said Festy Founder Graham de Barra.

Festy made their debut at last year’s Electric Picnic and Talos, one of the acts from last year’s Stradbally extravaganza will be among the artists appearing at ‘Festy-val’ this week.

It is the start of what promises to be a busy festival season for the company.

Last year’s proof of concept that the system worked with 50 Festival Goers trialling it, has led to further development over the winter and a number of significant commercial deployments already booked in for this summer.

The company is based in Cork and is already making waves in an exciting area of the entertainment sector.