Start-ups key part of Govt job creation strategy – Bruton

8 Jun 2011

Eighty new high-potential start-up companies (HPSUs) supported by Enterprise Ireland are expected to create more than 770 new jobs and total sales of €528m over the next three years, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton, TD, said at a showcase event today.

The 80 HPSUs, involving 150 entrepreneurs, were set up in 2010 and now employ more than 500 people. Exports make up 80pc of their total sales.

Over the past decade, through the scheme, Enterprise Ireland has supported more than 800 HPSUs which are responsible for employing more than 25,000 people directly and indirectly in the wider economy. These companies have combined sales of more than €1.5bn, 75pc of which is exported.  

Bruton said Enterprise Ireland’s HPSU programme was a key part of the Government’s job creation strategy.

“Today’s event demonstrates what Government and the private sector can do when they work together. It is particularly welcome to see that 10 of the companies showcased today have developed from research in our third-level institutions, which represents a substantial increase over previous years.”

Right supports for start-ups crucial

At the event, Hugh Cooney, chairman of Enterprise Ireland, said the environment for business start-ups was strong, but having the right supports in place is crucial.  

“Access to funding in particular is a critical ingredient for driving a flow of new start-ups. Very early stage companies can face difficulties in raising external finance,” he said.

“Enterprise Ireland has introduced a series of Competitive Start Funds aimed at helping them bridge this gap and quickly validate their market.  

“It has also facilitated the development of four seed funds, in partnership with the main Irish banks. These four funds are on target to invest in 40 new businesses in 2011. Together, they represent a significant increase in the availability of seed funding for Irish companies, with €124m now available for investment as against €30m in one fund in 2009.”