On Monday, An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny TD, launched the new Enterprise Ireland €200,000 Competitive Feasibility Fund for the West Region. This fund, which can provide up €25,000 per project, is aimed at boosting start-ups and creating jobs and growth in the West. It is now open for applications from entrepreneurs in counties Galway, Mayo and Roscommon, and will remain open until Wednesday 17 October 2012.
The fund is aimed at supporting entrepreneurs explore the feasibility of start-up ideas with job-creating potential for the West. Its particular focus is on growth-oriented businesses with the potential to move into export markets over time.
This is good news and, while it will not be appropriate for every entrepreneur, it will be accessed by some. There is no shortage of entrepreneurs and potential entrepreneurs out there, as was apparent on Friday at the Female Entrepreneur Seminar and Mentoring Clinic in the Salthill Hotel.
Over 130 women attended with 35 people involved in the pre arranged Mentoring Clinics.
From the keynote speaker Colette Twomey of Clonakilty Black Pudding right through to the panel of European speakers, the message was positive regarding female entrepreneurship but support is needed for businesses to get off the ground and succeed. Government grant aid and support is both welcome and essential and it is important that the relevant agencies help entrepreneurs to apply for such supports, a process that can be time consuming and unwieldy.
Announcing the fund, An Taoiseach said that it is all about helping innovative and enthusiastic individual entrepreneurs or new start-up companies to develop the high growth businesses that will create the jobs of the future for the west region. There is innovation and enthusiasm in abundance. We need to make sure that it’s fostered.
Full details of the fund, including the application form, are available on the Enterprise Ireland web site – www.enterprise-ireland.com/cffwest.
On the same subject, Ron McGowan, author of the international bestseller, ‘How to Find Work in the 21st Century’ believes that millions of dollars, euros and pounds are being poured down the drain by governments trying to recreate the second half of the twentieth century (i.e. traditional jobs as opposed to part-time, temporary, contract workers, or self-employed) through questionable programs that are supposed to help the unemployed find jobs.
If these funds were made available to successful small businesses that are ready to expand instead, he believes we would make a significant dent in the level of unemployment and at the same time affirm the reality that entrepreneurs create jobs, not governments.
September Business After Hours
The September Business After Hours will be hosted by Junior Chamber Galway in the Harbour Hotel, New Dock Road, Galway on Thursday 27 September at 6 pm. This is a networking opportunity and all Chamber Members and guests are welcome. RSVP to Elaine on 091-563536 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.