Competitive Start Fund (CSF)

The purpose of the Competitive Start Fund is to accelerate the growth of start-up companies that have the capacity to succeed in global markets. The fund is designed to enable those companies to reach key technical and commercial milestones. Applications are considered on a competitive basis. Funding is provided to companies who rank highest in a two-phase evaluation process. The maximum level of support per successful application is €50,000, for 10% in ordinary shares in the start-up company, to be released in 2 equal tranches of €25k (5% in ordinary shares for each tranche).

Applicants to the fund should ideally be able to demonstrate the following:

  • Be able to clearly demonstrate that product or service has reached Minimal Viable Product (MVP) stage, and that the product is, at a minimum, live in beta.
  • That the product or service has demonstrable customer validation ideally with (trial and/or paying) customers.
  • A fully articulated proposition addressing a clear gap in the market with market research conducted with customers/potential customers.
  • Evidence of innovation, export potential and employment capacity. Clear export market opportunity for the proposed product or service. Clear knowledge of the competitive landscape.
  • Clear execution plan outlined, identifying suitable channels to international markets.

Assessments are undertaken on the applications submitted, it is important to note that the greater the progress the applicant has undertaken towards generating sustainable revenues the stronger the application. Applications from projects that are at idea, concept or design stage may be considered to require further development before applying for the competitive start fund.

Download Start-up Showcase Directory

All applications to the Competitive Start Fund must be made via the Enterprise Ireland online application system during call open dates.

Two Competitive Start Fund competitions opened for applications on Tuesday 7th July 2020, closing on Tuesday 18th August at 3pm.

Please note that applicants may only apply for 1 of the 2 x calls below:

• 1. Women Entrepreneurship 
OR the
• 2. All Sectors

If you need any clarification on the eligibility requirements contact: csf@enterprise-ireland.com

Calls Now Open

Call No.DetailsCall OpenCall Close
CSF 64CSF Women Entrepreneurship - NOW OPEN7th July 202018th August 2020 at 3pm
CSF 65CSF All Sectors - NOW OPEN7th July 202018th August 2020 at 3pm

 

 

Application Support - Online Support Days

Application Support Days will be held online by Business Innovation Centres nationwide:

Dublin BIC
Tuesday - 21st July @ 10am - 12pm Click here to register
Wednesday - 5th Aug @ 10am - 12pm Click here to register

West BIC
Tuesday,14th July 2020 @ 11.00 - 1.00 Click here to register 
Tuesday, 11th August 2020 – registration link to follow, please note contact details for West BIC, below to register your interest

South East BIC
Thursday , 16th July @ 9:30 – 11:30 Click here to register
Wednesday, 5th Aug @ 9:30 – 11:30 Click here to register

Cork BIC
Wednesday 29th July 2020 from 11am to 1pm Click here to register

Application Support

Your Local Business Innovation Centre (BIC) in addition to application support days can offer assistance with preparing your CSF application. Contact your Local BIC for more information:

Key contact/more information

For more information on the Competitive Start Fund, please contact:

csf@enterprise-ireland.com

+353 1 727 2202 (9am - 5pm)

We are operating remotely, ideally send an email to csf@enterprise-ireland.com or alternatively leave a message and we will return your call.

If you are not a client of Enterprise Ireland and want to learn more about qualifying and applying for Enterprise Ireland’s High Potential Start-Up supports, go to our Start a Business Section