Starting a business in Ireland can be a smart move. As an entrepreneur, you may be looking for grants to support the growth and expansion of your business.

Ireland is one of the top-rated countries in the world to do business in. The 2018 ranking of Forbes declared Ireland as the 11th best country for business.

To commence any kind of business, one requires a lot of grants. However, if the idea is solid then things do get a lot easier to secure desired investment. The support could be in all forms and it varies and will depend on plenty of factors.

Opening a start-up in Ireland can be particularly favorable for several reasons, here are the main ones:

  • young, sparkling and dynamic environment;
  • tax burden among the lowest in Europe and government funding for digital businesses;
  • an overdeveloped context from the ITC point of view: Google, Facebook, Linkedin, Amazon and other big companies have seen Ireland as the most suitable country for their operational headquarters: the digital sector is evident and growing.

Do you want to know the main grants for start-ups in Ireland? Here are some of the best and relevant grant and funding programmes:

Enterprise Ireland and Industrial Development Authority

In Ireland, public money investments in private entrepreneurship are managed by two large state entities: Enterprise Ireland (EI) and Industrial Development Authority (IDA).

The two entities have similar skills but divide the market mainly based on the size of the company and the territorial context where the company intends to establish itself.

Enterprise Ireland

If you are looking to start a new venture in Ireland, Enterprise Ireland has to be your answer. It provides grants and supports like no other institution does.

The company thrives on by providing financial support to welcoming ideas. Moreover, it also helps in expansion after observing a potential growth and opportunity.

EI represents the first landing place for small businesses, called HPSU (High Potential Start-Ups). The procedure for applying for funding is explained on the EI website.

In particular, you can get:

  1. up to € 50,000, disbursed in two tranches, against a shareholding in the company’s capital that cannot exceed 10% of the company shares (Competitive Start Fund – CSF);
  2. up to € 250,000 in the form of a 50% co-investment with the beneficiary company (High Potential Start-Ups – HPSU);
  3. other forms of financing, such as the Market Discovery, which covers up to 50% of the costs incurred, up to a maximum of € 150,000, to evaluate the expansion of the product developed by the company in a specific target market.

Industrial Development Authority

Industrial Development Authority (IDA) is a public institution headed by the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and the Ministry of Business and Labor.

IDA deals with foreign companies interested in establishing themselves in Ireland. The companies are medium-large, they must have a business project that concerns the creation of jobs, with investments and turnover of a certain importance.

IDA offers a range of financing products -from grants to loans on IBRD terms- that take into account the variations in economic and social development of IDA countries.

One of the sectors for which the IDA has prepared a special support programme is the video games industry.

Support provided by ARP Games is aimed at young game designers and start-ups. It takes the form of special training, mentoring and capital entry.

The effect of this activity will be establishment of new companies operating in a market on which there are relatively few entities of this kind. Investments in start-ups from the game market entail high risk.

At ARP Games, this is mitigated using a project evaluation and mentoring system, based on global-class specialists. Support is provided in the form of competitions announced twice a year.

Propeller Venture Accelerator

The Ryan Academy of the DCU manages the program Propeller Venture Accelerator for the technological startups in initial phase.

Propeller is Ireland’s most successful privately funded accelerator. This program offers funding of € 30,000 plus €15,000 in service costs to entrepreneurs with winning ideas. On website you can find more information about the program.

Propeller Shannon

Among the accelerators collaborating with Enterprise Ireland is Propeller Shannon which is based in the city of the same name and focuses on innovation related to aerospace and travel tech.

Propeller Shannon will lead the growth of aviation companies in the start-up phase and participate in their success. In economic terms, Shannon offers its clients an investment of 45,000 euros in exchange for a capital of 7.5%.

If you are interested, here you will find the detailed program of the offer.

Some Advice

Upon applying for any kind of grant, funding or investment, the concerned party will ask you to present a detailed startup/business plan.

Regardless of in which form it is available, it should be precise, accurate and in-depth. It is strongly recommended to make sure whether the following points are covered in your presentation:

  • Be explicit. Don’t be vague. Inclusion of statistics, data, examples will benefit a great deal
  • Know about everything what you are saying or have written. This will make your task a lot more easier while explaining
  • Back your content with clear specifications. Addition of links in your presentation will also boost your case
  • Jot down your presentation in bullet points. A powerful presentation will leave a lasting impact

The aforementioned points – not necessarily – will ensure funding. However, it will strengthen your case if presented with grit, determination and fortitude.

If you liked this topic, we suggest you learn more with this specific article on advanced tax strategies for startup founders.