The Government has opened applications to the Restart Grant Plus Scheme, which aims to help SMEs adapt and reopen following Covid-19 restrictions.
Today (10 August), Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Leo Varadkar, TD, announced that applications have opened for the Restart Grant Plus Scheme.
The scheme, which provides grants to assist businesses as they reopen, is a key part of the Government’s €7.4bn July Stimulus package. The package of measures has been designed to stimulate a jobs-led recovery to rebuild the economy while managing the impact of Covid-19.
In this new round of the Restart Grant Plus Scheme, SMEs will now be able to apply for grants of between €4,000 and €25,000 as they reopen or adjust their business.
“We must do everything we can to help businesses reopen and get people back to work,” Varadkar said. “We are increasing the Restart Grant Plus, which means that small and medium-sized businesses can now get between €4,000 and €25,000 to help them get back on their feet after what has been an exceptionally difficult time.”
Key changes to the scheme
The latest iteration of the scheme includes €300m in funding, in addition to the €250m that was previously submitted. Previous grant amounts awarded were between €2,000 and €10,000.
Medium-sized companies with up to 250 employees can now also apply for the scheme, which previously reserved grants for companies with less than 50 employees. There is also increased eligibility for non-rateable B&Bs, sports clubs with commercial activities and trading charity shops.
Businesses that received a grant under the first scheme can re-apply to local authorities to receive additional funding. Multinationals and small Irish-based subsidies with overseas parent companies are not eligible for the scheme.
To qualify for the grant, a business must be commercial and in the local authority rates system, and have suffered a 25pc loss of expected turnover between 1 April and 30 June 2020. Businesses must also commit to reopening and to hiring and sustaining employment.
“Hairdressers, sports clubs, cafés, restaurants and several other businesses can use this money to help with the costs associated with reopening and adapting to what is a very different environment,” Varadkar added. “This is just one of several actions the Government is taking as part of the July Stimulus to help businesses.”
Interested businesses can apply through their local authorities.