The morning after Ireland’s Budget announcement, the Irish Internet Association and the Digital Hub hosted a post-budget briefing session to review the Budget specifically in the context of the ICT sector in Ireland.
A panel of experts was brought together at the Digital Exchange in Dublin to analyse the Budget through the eyes of the start-up and tech community. Michael McGivern, partner at RSM Farrell Grant Sparks, started off proceedings with a very comprehensive review of the implications of the Budget, and yours truly (Ann O’Dea) then chaired a panel session with McGivern, Brian Caulfield, entrepreneur and partner with venture capital firm DFJ Espirit, and macro-economist Constantin Gurdgiev, adjunct professor of finance at Trinity College Dublin, and regular commentator.
While several elements of the so-called 10 Point Tax Reform Plan were welcomed, like the increase of the threshold of tax receipts for VAT to €1.25m, and the improvement to the three-year corporate tax relief scheme for start-ups, the general consensus was that there was little in the Budget to adequately encourage the entrepreneur.
While Caulfield welcomed the announcement of €175m funding for Irish venture capitalists, via Enterprise Ireland, he said we would need to await the finer details. McGivern said he was particularly interested to see what the promised Tax Credit Review would throw up next year, as the scheme needed to be "tidied up".
Gurdgiev was characteristically frank and dismissed the Budget as "boring" and lacking imagination. He said there was little here to encourage the sectors where we have seen our success and that greater vision was needed in future budgets.
Watch just some of the commentary from the panelists below: