9% increase in investment in Irish companies under Enterprise Ireland Seed and Venture Capital Scheme in 2013 – Minister Bruton

17th July 2014

€59 million invested in 2013 in 94 Irish based companies by Irish venture capital firms supported by Dept of Jobs through Enterprise Ireland

Enterprise Ireland Seed & Venture Capital Programme Report 2013 published

The Enterprise Ireland Seed & Venture Capital Programme 2013 Report published today [Thursday] by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, shows a continued upward trend in the level and value of activity in venture capital funds supported under Enterprise Ireland Seed and Venture Capital Programmes.  In 2013 these Funds made 153 investments with an investment value of €59 million in 94 Irish-based companies, representing a significant increase on the €54million invested in 84 Irish companies in 2012 under the schemes.

These investments are supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through Enterprise Ireland.

The capital under management through Enterprise Ireland’s Seed and Venture Capital Programme 2007-2012 has now reached close to €700 million.  Cumulatively over the lifetime of this scheme 50% has been invested in the software sector and 35% in the life sciences sector. A separate analysis shows that Irish companies in receipt of investment under this Programme are employing over 2100 people in Ireland. A number of the Funds under the scheme are still investing in start-up and scaling companies. 

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton TD said:

“Venture capital funds provide critical funding, mentoring and access to networks to fast-growing companies and expanding established businesses. For these reasons, we established as part of the Action Plan for Jobs the new €700million Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2013-2018, a significant achievement at a time of constrained budgets. This will help support the next generation of Irish-based seed and venture funds and increase the availability of funds over the coming years to the fast-growing businesses that will create the jobs we need.

“The report we are publishing today shows that the seed and venture scheme supported by my Department through Enterprise Ireland continued to perform strongly in 2013. The value of investments in Irish companies increased by 9% to €59million, and the number of Irish companies which benefited was up by 12% to 94. Enterprise Ireland client companies delivered exports of €17.1billion and added 5442 jobs in 2013 and venture-backed companies contributed to these impressive results. If we can ensure that our seed and venture capital schemes continue to perform strongly over the coming years this will make a major contribution towards creating the jobs we need”.

Julie Sinnamon, CEO Enterprise Ireland, said: “Enterprise Ireland’s priority is to support the creation of high potential start-ups and the expansion of scaling companies to support job creation and export growth. A dynamic and commercially driven venture capital market play a key role in this strategy and we look forward to continuing to work with the venture capital sector for the benefit of Irish industry”.

Enterprise Ireland partners with the venture capital sector in a wide number of programmes and initiatives aimed at improving access to finance for small and medium sized enterprises and to further develop the seed and venture capital industry in Ireland.  This industry plays a vital role in supporting innovative companies to grow, expand internationally and create jobs. The strong level of activity in 2013, and continued in the first half of 2014, confirms the readiness and commitment across the sector to bring an increase in venture capital funding being made available to meet the urgent need for capital.

The report is available at: www.enterprise-ireland.com/svc2013


For further information please contact the Press Office at Enterprise Ireland or

Press Office, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Tel: 01 631 2200.

Editors’ Notes

Highlights for Enterprise Ireland funding activities of the past 18 months include:

  • Frontline Ventures €20 million fund and SOS Ventures €20 million fund set up in 2013 and early 2014 respectively to invest in early stage opportunities under the Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2007-2012.
  • Enterprise Ireland made a total commitment of €75 million to three fund managers under the Development Capital Scheme, MML Growth Capital Partners Ireland in 2013 and the BDO Development Capital Fund and the Carlyle Cardinal Ireland Fund in 2014. This will significantly increase the availability of funding for Irish growth SMEs over the coming years. 
  • The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through Enterprise Ireland has also committed €99.5 million to a number of venture capital funds under the Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2013-2018. These funds are currently fundraising and will target investment in the wider information and communications technologies and life sciences sectors of the economy.
  • Other targeted competitive calls for expressions of interest will also be issued under this scheme to further the range of funding options for Irish companies. In this guise, a public consultation exercise closed earlier in the summer and Enterprise Ireland in consultation with the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation will be considering the submissions from this process and other inputs in the formulation of future calls for expressions of interest under the Seed and Venture Capital Scheme 2013-2018.