Applications open for Enterprise Ireland’s Pre-Seed Start Fund

24 Aug 2023

From left: Conor McGinn, Aisling Kirwan, Anna-Marie Turley, Heidi Davis and Minister Simon Coveney, TD. Image: Maxwells Photography

The Pre-Seed Start Fund offers start-ups up to €100,000 to help them test the market and progress their business plans.

The Irish Government has invited entrepreneurs and start-ups to apply for an Enterprise Ireland fund designed to support the early needs of new companies.

Launched last year, Enterprise Ireland’s Pre-Seed Start Fund offers start-ups support of up to €100,000, in the form of a convertible loan note. The convertible loan note is intended to convert into equity on a future priced round at a 20pc discount.

The funding aims to give start-ups enough critical early-stage funding to test the market for their products and services and progress their business plans. Enterprise Ireland said the new funding is designed for high-growth, early-stage start-ups, particularly those in the manufacturing, life sciences, food and renewables sectors.

The fund is designed to help companies progress through the technical and commercial milestones required to attract future seed funding within six to 18 months.

The state agency said the fund is one of a number of initiatives that aim to support more high growth start-ups in Ireland. Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Simon Coveney, TD, said the Irish Government is committed to help companies “realise their full growth potential”.

“The Pre-Seed Start Fund provides the initial critical funding to help launch early-stage start-ups and I strongly urge entrepreneurs with a solid business plan and a minimum viable product to apply,” Coveney said.

In addition to the investment, successful applicants will receive the support of an Enterprise Ireland development adviser. The state agency said this adviser will help provide access to various start-up supports such as mentoring and market research services.

Full details and how to apply for the Pre-Seed Start Fund can be found on the Enterprise Ireland website. Applications must be submitted before 15 September to ensure the allocation of funding by the end of this year.

Earlier this week, Anna-Marie Turley of Enterprise Ireland explained the key things a founder needs to know before applying for funding. She told that a good applicant has the ambition to succeed in global markets.

“They will also be able to clearly articulate both in the written application and in a short four-minute video what problem they are solving and what their route to market is,” Turley said.

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic