Small businesses can now apply for €250m Government Restart Grant

22 May 2020

Image: © Kris Tan/

Eligible businesses that have stayed open throughout the crisis, and those that plan to reopen, can avail of grants between €2,000 and €10,000.

Today (22 May), Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation Heather Humphreys, TD, announced that local authorities are now taking applications for the Government’s €250m Restart Grant.

The grant is aimed at helping small businesses with the costs associated with reopening and reemploying workers following Covid-19 closures.

In a statement, Humphreys said that eligible businesses that have stayed open throughout the crisis, as well as those that plan to reopen under phase one and phase two of the Government’s roadmap for reopening society, are encouraged to apply now.

Phase one and two

“I want to ensure that eligible companies with the most immediate need to get back up-and-running receive the grant support as quickly as possible,” Humphreys said. “For this reason, the businesses listed in phase one and phase two of the Roadmap, as well as those who stayed open all along, will be prioritised.”

Humphreys added that businesses know the dates on which their premises can reopen, and those that are set to reopen later in the roadmap should wait a few weeks to apply for their grants.

“Staff in the local authorities will endeavour to process applications quickly, but a quick turnaround will be difficult to achieve if every business applies immediately.”

The grant is being offered as part of the Government’s wider €12bn package of supports for businesses of all sizes, which includes the Wage Subsidy Scheme, grants, low-cost loans, write-off of commercial rates and deferred tax liabilities.

Criteria to be met

To avail of the Restart Grant, applicants must be a commercial business and be in the Local Authorities Commercial Rates Payment system, with an annual turnover of less than €5m and between one and 50 employees. The businesses must also have suffered a projected 25pc loss in turnover through June 2020 and commit to remain open or to reopen if they were closed.

Additionally, applicants must declare the intention to retain employees that are on the temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme and re-employ staff on the Pandemic Unemployment Payment as business recovers.

The grants issued will be between a minimum of €2,000 and a maximum of €10,000. If a company is currently in a rateable premise but was not rate-assessed in 2019, it will still be eligible to apply. The local authorities will pay grants based on an estimate of what the rates demand for 2019 would have been.

Businesses with queries that aren’t addressed on the application form can contact their local Business Support Unit.

Kelly Earley was a journalist with Silicon Republic