Despite the uncertainty around Brexit, Irish companies can and should take immediate action to address their Brexit exposure.
Enterprise Ireland and the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation are working in conjunction with the Local Enterprise Offices, NSAI and HSA to get Irish businesses Brexit ready with a range of supports.
The supports highlighted with ** are available to all Irish businesses.
** These supports are available to all SME businesses registered in Ireland.
* These supports are available to both Enterprise Ireland and LEO clients.
Brexit Advisory Clinics **
The core objective of the Brexit Advisory Clinics is to provide practical information to companies nationwide and support them to take immediate action to address their exposure to Brexit.
Online Customs Insights Course **
Understand the key concepts of customs, the documentation required and the options available to reduce the impact of Brexit with our online Customs Insights course.
Brexit Scorecard **
The Brexit Scorecard is a free online tool which assesses your business readiness. The scorecard is intended as a first step towards preparing for Brexit and developing a robust Brexit plan.
Brexit: Act On Initiative
Brexit: Act On Initiative offers advice and support on financial and currency management, strategic sourcing and customs and logistics
The Brexit: Act On Initiative offers advice and support on financial and currency management, strategic sourcing and customs and logistics. Companies work with an independent consultant to decide on specific actions to address some of the risks and opportunities Brexit presents.
Agile Innovation Fund *
The Agile Innovation Fund supports product, service and process innovation to build competitive advantage. The fund is aimed at clients in sectors with rapid design cycles or have not previously applied for RD&I support.
The key benefit of this support is that it provides access up to 50% towards innovation projects with a total cost of up to €300,000.
Be Prepared Grant
The Be Prepared Grant, which offers up to €5,000 or 50% of the total cost in financial support, can be used to help cover consultancy, travel and expenses for both domestic and international employee travel. The grant is intended to provide strategic support to companies to use internal resources or a third-party consultant to undertake a short project to determine how the company could respond to Brexit.
Strategic Consultancy Grant
The Strategic Consultancy Grant supports the hiring of a strategic consultant typically over a longer period to assist the company in the development and/or the implementation of strategic initiatives. It is designed to facilitate business growth as the consultants can act as coach, mentor, facilitator, analyst for the company.
Market Discovery Fund
The Market Discovery Fund is designed to help companies of all sizes to prepare to enter new markets.
By providing funding to hire consultants with in-depth knowledge of the target market, businesses can determine barriers to entry, assess the competitive landscape and identify opportunities. This support also enables companies to carry out market research and develop an effective strategy
Operational Excellence Offer
The Operational Excellence Offer enables Irish companies trading internationally to develop or transform their wider business in order to compete more effectively.
LEO | Local Enterprise Offices
Download the LEO guide to Brexit Supports
Under the Brexit Mentor Programme, clients work with an experienced mentor on a one-to-one basis to identify key areas of exposure within their business. With advice and guidance from their mentor, clients develop strategies that are more robust, which address issues and maximise potential opportunities around Brexit.
LEAN for Micro
LEAN for Micro has been adapted by Enterprise Ireland for LEO clients to help small businesses boost competitiveness, increase performance and profitability as well as building resilience within their companies. Under this programme, clients can avail of five days of consultancy with a Lean Expert (a qualified practitioner), who will work with the company to introduce lean principles, undertake a specific cost reduction project and assist the company in benchmarking its performance.
Technical Assistance for Micro-Exporters (TAME) Grant
The TAME grant supports clients to explore and develop new export market opportunities, such as participation in international trade fairs and development of export-related marketing materials and websites. With a focus on helping companies to diversify, this scheme is a matched-funding opportunity with up to €2,500 available.
Trading Online Voucher Scheme
An initiative under the Government’s National Digital Strategy, the Trading Online Voucher Scheme helps small businesses trade more online to boost their sales and reach new markets. This scheme is a matched-funding opportunity with up to €2,500 available, with training and further supports provided by Local Enterprise Offices. Funding can be used towards eligible costs such as digital marketing strategies, e-commerce websites or app development.
For existing companies and potential start-ups that meet eligibility criteria (such as employing 10 or fewer people with the potential for growth and job creation), Local Enterprise Offices can also offer three types of financial supports to help manage Brexit responses:
- Priming Grants*
- Business Expansion Grants*
- Feasibility Study Grants*
*Further eligibility criteria apply.
Microfinance Loans (through Microfinance Ireland)
Local Enterprise Offices can work with clients on their applications to Microfinance Ireland (MFI) for small business loans of between €2,000 and €25,000 (unsecured). Loans for commercially viable proposals can be used to help fund start-up costs, working capital or business expansion. By applying for an MFI small business loan through a Local Enterprise Office, clients can avail of a 1% reduction in the interest rate charged.
Enterprise Europe Network
The Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) is the world’s largest support network for small and medium-sized enterprises that have international growth ambitions. The EEN is active in more than 60 countries around the globe, bringing 3,000 experts together from more than 600 member organisations. Through the Local Enterprise Offices, the EEN can help small businesses get expert advice, source technologies and identify trusted business partners.
Funding for Local Enterprise Offices, which work in partnership with Enterprise Ireland and local authorities, is provided by the Government of Ireland through the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation.
Start to Plan Vouchers **
The Brexit ‘Start to Plan’ vouchers, which offer 100% financial support, of up to £2000/€2000 to enable companies to get professional advice on Brexit, including likely tariffs, currency management, regulatory and customs issues and movement of labour, goods and services.
Tariff Checker **
The Tariff Checker offers insight into the potenital tarriffs based on World Trade Organisation data on goods traded between the UK and EU .
Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland
SBCI Brexit Loan Scheme
The SBCI Brexit Loan Scheme is offered in partnership with the Department of Business Enterprise and Innovation, the Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine and is supported by the InnovFin SME Guarantee Facility, with the financial backing of the European Union under Horizon 2020 Financial Instruments.
Approval of loans are subject to AIB, Bank of Ireland and Ulster Bank credit policies and procedures.
HSA | Health & Safety Authority
Chemicals Helpdesk **
The HSA’s Chemicals Helpdesk provides a support service for Irish chemical companies and SMEs on meeting legislative duties and ensuring they can source chemicals and sell in the EU
NSAI | National Standards Authority of Ireland
Certification, Standards and Metrology Advisory Service **
The National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) provides advice on how best to ensure businesses are certified to appropriate standards to access markets