New Irish start-up fund seeking entrepreneurs from ‘all sectors’

12 Jan 2017

From left: Rob Laffan, CEO, Tippy Talk; Julie Sinnamon, CEO, Enterprise Ireland; Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor, TD; Orla Battersby, HPSU manager, Enterprise Ireland. Image: Colm Mahady/Fennells

The latest Enterprise Ireland competitive start-up fund totals €750,000, with the broad reach something that should interest many.

Enterprise Ireland’s new €750,000 Competitive Start Fund is seeking 15 companies or entrepreneurs for early-stage funding, aiming to test the market for products and services, and gear up for global business.

The money has been allocated in order to improve companies’ ability to hit key targets, including international market research and prototype manufacturing.

Other areas it hopes to help with include securing a reference site, developing a market plan, striking partnership deals and appealing to further investors.

Usually themed, this broad fund wants applicants from across the internet, games, apps, mobile, SaaS, cloud, enterprise software, life sciences, cleantech and industrial products sectors.

“A key aim of the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs is to drive a strong pipeline of ambitious entrepreneurs with progressive products and services,” said Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor, TD.

“Ireland is recognised as a hub for innovation and start-ups and this fund will make a real contribution to help more early-stage businesses get off the ground and ultimately assist in creating more jobs around all regions of the country.”

Mitchell O’Connor’s department is pressing on with plans to bulk up the number of high potential start-up companies (HPSUs) that have the potential to employ more than 10 people and achieve €1m in export sales within three years.

“A priority for Enterprise Ireland is to help Irish entrepreneurs and companies to start up and scale,” said Orla Battersby, Enterprise Ireland’s manager for the HPSU division.

“The all-sector Competitive Start Fund provides a support platform and a vital injection of funding totalling up to €750,000 to help launch young companies with global ambition and their business ideas to an international market.”

Applications are being sought until 8 February.

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic