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Starting and developing your own business – How Enterprise Ireland can help - Tyndall Innovation Forum - 25 th May 2006 What I will cover … Types of Businesses Enterprise Ireland supports Type of support that is available Some critical success factors

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Starting and developing your own business how enterprise ireland can help l.jpg

Starting and developing your own business – How Enterprise Ireland can help -

Tyndall Innovation Forum - 25th May 2006

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What I will cover …

  • Types of Businesses Enterprise Ireland supports

  • Type of support that is available

  • Some critical success factors

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Types of new enterprises we support ….


What is a ‘High potential start-up’ business ?

  • Company that manufactures or trades services internationally;

  • Usually product / services based on technological innovation;

  • Export oriented;

  • Involving industry experienced team

  • Potential for sales > €1m and 10 employees within 3/4 yrs

  • Irish controlled and located in Ireland.

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Who we work with ….

A wide range of people …

  • Key functional managers within existing businesses with new business ideas;

  • Experienced Managers looking at a management buy-out;

  • Irish ex-Pats, returning to Ireland with new business ideas

  • Individuals involved in 3rd level research, with an interest in commercialisation;

  • ‘Serial’ or repeat entrepreneurs.

    - The majority of original promoters of start up companies EI supports have technical background / qualifications

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Where do entrepreneurs typically come from?

Sourcing people with new ideas

1999 – Dec 2005

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How we operate

  • One division responsible for all start up’s

  • Organised along sectoral lines

  • Each new prospective client is assigned a “Development Advisor” or account executive.

  • The full range of EI resources is accessed through that advisor.

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Some detail on assistance from EI

  • Advice and mentoring

  • Identifying customers and securing export sales

  • Funding – from EI and other sources

  • Infrastructure; Incubation space / Premises.

    Business Innovation Centres

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1. Advice and mentoring – Getting started

  • Enterprise Start Programmes (over 6 weeks) and Enterprise Platform Programmes (over 12 months with part salary support). – Genesis in Cork.

  • Initial idea / project evaluation – Feasibility study grant (50%).

  • Advice and help in development of a business plan;

  • Assistance with product / market validation , Fit for market seminars.

  • Challenging of assumptions, projections etc – help fill the gaps.

  • Advice and help in building a balanced, management team;

  • Mentor Panels / Investor readiness panels

  • Introductions (investors, business partners, consultants)

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2. Identifying and securing export sales

  • Access to an international network of overseas offices

  • Overseas incubation space

  • Assistance in identification and securing overseas key reference customers

  • Financial assistance towards costs associated with attending international trade fairs, fact finding missions etc

  • Access to overseas market intelligence and research

  • Introductions to overseas industry experts

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3. EI funding for HPSU’s:

Funding to ‘explore new opportunities’

- Small grants – up to €65k

  • Funding towards ‘establishing a HPSU’

  • Grants and equity

RTI – grants and repayable grants

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Enterprise Ireland as an Investor

  • EI will typically purchase up to 10% of the ordinary share capital;

  • Balance of funding in the form of grants and/or preference share – normally on a 50/50 basis;

  • Very early stage start-ups –’milestone funding’ e.g.

    • Completion of critical element of R&D activity;

    • Development of a Beta Model;

    • A patent application in a specific location

  • The level of EI funding is determined by the potential level of exports and job creation

    Other EI supported funding sources:

  • 15 Seed and Venture funds

  • Business Angel Programme – Cork, Dublin , Galway

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Third Level

Enterprise Ireland Space

Industry R&D

Proof of Concept

Campus Companies

Collaborative R&D

Basic Research / Scholarships

Research Agenda

Basic Research Infrastructure

Where EI fits in the Research Support System

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R&D supports

- RTI Scheme- Support towards company led R&D. Up to €650k in support.

  • Commercialisation of R&D (CORD) Phase - bring new product idea/business ventures from 3rd Level to market. Open to campus companies, academic entrepreneurs and experienced professionals interested in forming campus companies. CORD grants of up to 50% of eligible costs may be approved.

    - Innovation Partnerships - supporting R&D collaboration between colleges and companies. Assistance from 35% to 75% to max of €190k.

    - Intellectual Property Assistance Scheme - advice on the protection, development and commercialisation of patentable technology. Some financial assistance may be available.

    - Innovation Management - Training in R&D and Technology Management (70% grant aid)

    - R&D Awareness Initiative – 3 days consultancy for companies looking at first time R&D.

    - Fusion - Intertrade Ireland scheme offering funding for a technology graduate for 18 months

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4. Other EI Supported Infrastructure

  • Business Innovation Centres: Cork, Dublin, Galway, Limerick,Waterford.

  • Incubation Centres, Community Enterprise Centres, Webworks

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Example of Possible EI early stage Start Up Support

  • Initial business concept assessment.

  • Innovation Partnership funding.

  • Feasibility Support (€19,000) or CORD (€38,000)

  • Mentor appointed to assist with business planning

  • R&D training

  • Meet EI overseas office to discuss export marketing / First Flight programme

  • Trade Show participation

  • Participant on Sales Star Programme – Training.

  • Introductions (VC’s, Buyer visits)

  • Approved for EI HPSU Funding package.

  • - Having completed commercial and technical assessment.

  • Ongoing Development Advisor contact, support, feedback and challenge throughout process

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Volume and impact

EI assisted HPSUs since 1999:

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HPSU review 1989 - 2004:

Status of EI client companies in 2004




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Trading Performance

  • For these firms trading in 2004:

    • Total annual sales : €1,180m

    • Total employment : 9,200

  • Average age of firm with

    • Sales €5m - €10m is 6.7 years

    • Sales > €20m is 6.3 years

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Some examples of successful Co’s

  • Iona Technologies Plc

  • Trinity Biotech Plc

  • Riverdeep Interactive Learning Ltd (formerly Plc)

  • Ceva plc

  • Fineos Corporation Ltd

  • Conduit Software

  • Combilift Ltd

  • Eontec Ltd ( recently taken over )

  • MVT ( now Agilent)

  • Softco Ltd

  • Steripack Ltd

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Delta Off Site Solutions


Alimentary Health

Solas Technology

1 2 Travel

Ecom interaction Services



Lincor Solutions


MP Stor






Some local examples

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Critical success factors

1 Customer knowledge and focus & Building a strategic alliance.

- Trust and commitment

- Understanding the value chain of the customer and where the product fits

- Understanding the customer purchasing process in detail and sign off

2 Product offering based on clear technological advantage.

3 Strong, experienced management team.

4 Experienced sales and marketing professional in the team.

5 Well funded or with access to strategic funding from the outset.

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Talk to US …….

[email protected]

Telephone : Maria Walshe 01 - 6092127