Am I Eligible?
How do I Apply?
Call Close Dates
Contact Details/More Information
Overview of the Competitive Feasibility Fund for the North West Region
The objective of the Competitive Feasibility Fund for the North West Region is to assist a new start-up company or individual entrepreneur to investigate the viability of a new significant growth orientated business or proposition to be located in the North West Region (counties Donegal, Sligo and Leitrim). The objective of the feasibility grant is to provide the necessary information to enable the promoter (and Enterprise Ireland) to reach firm conclusions regarding the project's viability and set out investor ready plans and financials associated with developing and commercialising the innovative product or service on international markets.
The Fund is open to applications from the ICT, Industrial, and Food sectors including the following sub-sectors: Internet, Games, SaaS, Cloud Computing, Enterprise Software, Telecoms, Lifesciences, Cleantech, and Industrial Products.
Typical elements involved in carrying out a feasibility study include:
- Market research
- Cost analysis
- Financial projections
- Manufacturing process assessment
- Plant evaluation and selection
- Raw material sourcing
- Negotiating with potential joint venture partners or obtaining a manufacturing licence may also be included
Am I Eligible?
You are eligible to apply if you are; an entrepreneur with a business proposition OR a new start up business that has the potential to create jobs and growth for the North West Region and whose business is:
- Less than 18 months since date of incorporation.
- Based on an innovative technology or service offering.
- Likely to achieve significant growth in three to four years (sales of €1m per annum and employment of 10 or more) in the North West Region or, where a company is required to have FDA or CE approval, within three years of approval to sell.
- Led by an experienced team, with a mixture of technical and commercial competencies.
- Must be a manufacturing or an internationally traded services business*.
- Must not be involved in activities that fall within gambling or "gaming" as defined in the Gaming & Lotteries Act 1956.
*Projects focused solely on the domestic market may not be considered to have significant growth potential.
What is the maximum funding available and what costs are eligible?
Applications are considered on a case-by-case basis. Enterprise Ireland will assess eligibility of the activities proposed in the study and associated costs. The amount of support is determined by the Evaluation Panel following this assessment.
The maximum grant funding available for the feasibility study is 50% of eligible expenditures. The maximum level of grant funding is up to €25,000.
Up to €200,000 in grant funding, in total, will be allocated to successful applicants.
Any expenditure incurred prior to the call close date is not eligible for support.
Maximum Limits and Notes
|Salaries and Overheads|
- Maximum salary support of €1,000 per week (€200 per day) for a maximum of 12 weeks (60 days) per employee.
- Only time spent on the proposed project by employees of the company can be applied for.
- Support for external consultants must be applied for in the Consultancy Fees section.
- Employee time spent attending Trade Fairs is ineligible.
- Overheads of up to a maximum of 30% of eligible salary costs can be applied for.
|Foreign Travel and Subsistence|
- Only Travel and Subsistence costs for overseas trips related to the proposed project are allowed.
- Foreign Travel and Subsistence costs must be for company employees.
- Subsistence rate is to cover all out of pocket expenses including hotels, meals, taxis local fares, incidentals etc.
- If Foreign Travel and Subsistence is for Trade Fairs is it limited to 5 employees.
- Eligible Travel Costs: Economy Air/Ferry or Rail Fares, Mileage (60c per kilometre) or Economy Car Hire (note mileage cannot be claimed on Hire Cars)
- Eligible Subsistence Rates: Overnight Rate - 24 hr period, max €200 per Day rate, < 24 hours €60.
- Costs of hiring a specialist consultant to input into or undertake the proposed project for a maximum of 30 days per consult/firm.
- Max. Consultancy rates: Days 1 to 20: €900 per day, Days 21 to 30: €700 per day.
- Where a consultancy firm has more than one consultant engaged, the aggregate number of days worked by all consultants engaged on the project is counted.
- Daily rates to be inclusive of travel and subsistence and all out-of-pocket expenses.
- Where there is more than one consultancy firm involved on the project, the rates & limits apply to each firm separately.
|Trade Fair Costs|
- N.B. - Only the cost of a company's first-time participation in an international Trade Fair/Trade Show in any one country is eligible.
- Not available to Large Companies.
- Eligible Expenditures relating to Trade Fair: Entry Fees - for a max of 5 company employees, Rental of exhibition space/stand, Stand Set-up and Installation Costs, Sundries: expenditure of €500 is allowable towards the cost of trade show related promotional material, brochure design/printing costs, translation costs etc.
- Purchase of equipment/ICT etc is ineligible
- Participation at conferences, symposiums, standalone company events, demonstrations or meetings are not eligible for support.
- Prototype materials, specialised software tools, hire of equipment or facilities and other sundry costs relating to building a prototype are eligible.
- Where consultants/contractors are being used to input into the prototype design/build, the costs should be entered in the Consultancy Fees section of the application form.
- Employee time should be entered under the Salaries and Overheads section.
- Capital items/equipment costs such as laptops, servers are not eligible under this expenditure item.
How Do I Apply?
Download and complete the official North West Feasibility Study Application Form. Only applications submitted using the official application form will be deemed eligible.
Call Close Dates
This Call closed at 6:00pm on Friday 22 June 2012.
Assessment Criteria and Evaluation Process
Project evaluation will consist of a two phase Assessment:
Assessment Part 1:
An evaluation panel comprising three representatives of Enterprise Ireland will evaluate each application and will score them under the following criteria:
Projects will be assessed at each round and those of an acceptable score will proceed to the next stage.
|Promoter(s)/ Team profile, track record and domain knowledge||40%|
|Customer demand and the long-term potential of the Business||30%|
|Innovation level of proposed product / service||30%|
Assessment Part 2:
The highest ranking applications will be sent to an Evaluation Panel comprising external industry experts and representatives of Enterprise Ireland for review. The highest ranking applicants will be invited to present a short pitch to this evaluation panel at the offices of Enterprise Ireland in Sligo.
- The date of the pitch for this call was Thursday 12 July, 2012.
The evaluation panel will score the applicant’s performance based on the following equally weighted criteria:
- Likelihood of the project locating and succeeding in the North West Region
- What is it about you and / or your management team that makes you capable of executing on this feasibility study?
- What specific need does your product / service address? Why would someone be "compelled" to purchase your offering?
- How innovative is the offering?
Tel. + (353) 71 915 9726
Tel. + (353) 71 915 9700
Enterprise Ireland Sligo Office
Finisklin Business Park
Tel: 071 915 9700
Fax: 071 915 9701