Government support through Enterprise Ireland

Support for Start-Ups from Enterprise Ireland

Enterprise Ireland offers a comprehensive range of supports to make it as easy as possible to set up your business in Ireland and to grow that business on global markets. 

Based on our extensive experience and success with over 800 innovative, export-oriented start-ups over the past two decades, available supports have been fine-tuned to meet the exacting and often flexible needs of entrepreneurs.  78% of the companies we have supported over that long period are still alive, which is very high by international standards. This illustrates the quality of the supports available to you. We currently support over 70 new start-ups each year, with a target to grow this number to 100 per annum.

All our support is channelled through a specific, experienced Enterprise Ireland adviser assigned to assist you through the start-up and growth phases of your business.

In most cases our support is free or heavily subsidised. We can do this because we are funded by the Government to grow Irish companies. We are therefore selective about who we support. The level of support is related to the project’s potential benefits to Ireland and is subject to specific terms of eligibility.

Think of us as your partner in Ireland.

Details of our Start-Up Supports

The supports available to you are summarised below. They include: 

1. Funding

Funding is available in two forms:

Pre-Investment Support

Projects that meet our other criteria and have made some progress but are not fully investor-ready can apply to attend an Accelerator Programme. Some participants on Accelerator Programmes can receive an Enterprise Ireland grant to cover living costs. Some Accelerator Programmes also provide a similar level of funding in the form of an equity investment for a small stake in the company (typically about 6%).

Investment Support

Projects coming from overseas, that are fully investor ready and meet all of our criteria can apply for support under the €10m fund, set up specifically to attract international start-ups to Ireland.

We will not provide all the funding required to get a company started - you must invest some yourself and/or raise it from commercial sources. We can assist with advice and introductions to other investors in Ireland.

When you get past the start-up stage, other financial assistance is available to help you to maintain steady growth. We can also fund companies who relocate to Ireland and expand here.

2. Advice, mentoring and introductions to get you started

We can help you plan your business and build your networks. We can also provide access to advice on all aspects of setting up and growing a business in Ireland. We do this in a variety of ways and for companies at all stages of growth. Support available to you includes:

  • Advice and support from Enterprise Ireland staff
  • Assigning you a mentor, at no cost to you, from our panel of several hundred experienced business people who have volunteered to help companies like you
  • Introductions to advisers, potential non-executive directors, research centres with relevant technology, potential investors, suppliers etc.
  • Incubation programmes designed to help start ups get their business off the ground. These include workshops, mentoring and incubator space. Other programmes help established companies improve their growth prospects
  • Free access to some of the leading commercial sources of market research reports, company databases etc.

3. Practical help to enter Overseas Markets

Our 30 offices worldwide, staffed by 150 marketing professionals, provide a comprehensive range of export supports.  These supports are designed to help you, and companies like you, plan and implement your international marketing strategy. They are particularly helpful in securing your first key reference customers.

Our entire overseas network has actively built relations with the type of customers targeted by our clients. We may already have a relationship with your dream customer!

How to Access our Services/Contact Us

Enterprise Ireland supports are only available to certain categories of entrepreneurs and companies. Learn more about qualifying for Enterprise Ireland supports or contact us for more information.