Enterprise Ireland Business Financial Planning Grant can assist domestically focused companies during Crisis

As part of the Covid-19 Business Response recently announced by the Government, Enterprise Ireland has announced that it will administer a Business Financial Planning Grant to specifically support domestic focused companies as well as a Sustaining Enterprise Fund for small enterprises.

60 percent of Irish companies that have engaged with Enterprise Ireland since March say that Covid-19 has had a very negative or critical impact on their business to date.

Financial planning was listed as one of the key priorities identified by client companies in responding to the crisis. 34 percent of the client companies in contact have engaged with a financial institution, and just one in three have put a financial plan in place.

Worth up to €5,000, the Business Financial Planning Grant will assist companies to develop a Business Sustainment Plan and to engage the services of an approved Financial Consultant when applying for funding. By having a financial plan in place, a business will be better positioned to understand its immediate financial position, manage costs and identify the finance it requires.

Additional supports available from Enterprise Ireland to help Covid-19 impacted businesses include:

• A €2,500 LEAN Business Continuity Voucher to help companies quickly access expertise in reviewing and optimising operations at a time of crisis to identify the key measures needed to ensure continued operations. This fund can be used to avail of consultancy expertise to assess a business’s preparations to adhere to back to work protocols

• The €180 million Sustaining Enterprise Fund recently announced by the Government is available to assist companies in the manufacturing and internationally traded services sectors, employing 10 or more people who have suffered, or expect to suffer, a 15% or more reduction in turnover or profits or an increase in costs as a direct result of Covid-19. Funding of up to €800,000 will allow eligible businesses to access the necessary liquidity and funding to sustain their businesses in the short to medium term and contribute to the recovery of the Irish economy

• The Sustaining Enterprise Fund for Small Enterprises. As part of the €180 million Sustaining Enterprise Fund, this support will provide a €25k to €50k short term funding injection to eligible smaller companies in the manufacturing and internationally traded services sectors employing 10 or more people (on or before February 29th, 2020) to support business continuity and to strengthen their ability to return to growth. Eligible companies will have suffered, or be projected to suffer, a 15 percent or more reduction in actual or projected turnover or profit as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak.

Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD said, “The impact of Covid-19 presents unprecedented difficulties for businesses who have already spent the past three years preparing for the possible consequences of Brexit, but those preparations will stand to us. Earlier this month, the Government announced a major expansion of supports for all businesses impacted by Covid-19 by €6.5bn.

“We now have a comprehensive suite of supports for firms of all sizes, which includes grants, low-cost loans, write-off of commercial rates and deferred tax liabilities, all of which will help to improve cashflow amongst our SMEs.

“This package, which includes the €180 million Sustaining Enterprise Fund, has been developed to meet the varying needs of Irish enterprise and the supports are very specifically targeted by size, sector and need.”

Enterprise Ireland Regional Director for the Mid-West, Jerry Moloney said, “This is a very serious and challenging time for businesses with many facing acute challenges particularly around cashflow, investment and holding onto the skills that they worked so hard to recruit. Our focus is on supporting companies through this period, to get the right advice and access to funding that they may need.

“My strong advice to companies is, if you haven’t already done so, to prepare an assessment of your financial requirements and progress funding applications to the banks and other financial institutions immediately. Enterprise Ireland’s Business Financial Planning grant can help companies to prepare a plan to sustain their businesses.

“Given the recent back to work protocols announced by government, the Lean Business Continuity Voucher can also be used by businesses of all sizes to avail of consultants who will assess your businesses readiness and advise on the steps to put in place to make sure your business is fully compliant.

“The Enterprise Ireland Regional Teams are in constant contact with businesses of all sizes, not just existing clients, about the wide range of Enterprise Ireland and wider Government supports available to them during this unprecedented time. I urge any business owner to directly get in touch with the Enterprise Ireland office in Shannon to discuss the next steps to getting back to business,” Jerry Moloney added.

For further information, please contact Enterprise Ireland Shannon Office on 061 777000 or by email on CarolAnn.Henchy@enterprise-ireland.com

The supports available from Enterprise Ireland to help Covid-19 impacted businesses include:

The €5,000 Covid-19 Business Financial Planning Grant will help companies to develop the Business Sustainment Plan.
The grant will support companies with 100% funding to engage the services of an approved Financial Consultant to develop this plan for use when applying for bank or investor funding and when developing their own medium-term financial strategy. Enterprise Ireland will work with these companies on a one-to-one basis to support the implementation of the plan.

The €2,500 Lean Business Continuity Voucher is a training project of up to three days carried out by an approved external advisor/trainer directly with an eligible company. It is expected that the three days will be spread over a longer period so that there is time for the company to implement changes between sessions.

It is expected that this support would be delivered online in most cases.

The project should focus on the operations of the company in terms of;
– Crisis response where appropriate
– Sustaining Operations including process re-engineering
– Planning for resilience post crisis.

The Sustaining Enterprise Fund
This €180m fund will provide funding of up to €800,000 to eligible manufacturing and internationally traded services companies to maintain liquidity and sustain their businesses in the short to medium term. Funding will be in the form of a repayable advance.

Sustaining Enterprise Fund – Small Enterprise
Smaller companies in the manufacturing and internationally traded services sectors (employing 10 or more with a turnover of under €5m) can access a repayable advance up to €50,000 to maintain liquidity and sustain their businesses in the short to medium term.

Innovative HPSU Fund
Equity investment of up to €800,000 on a co-funded basis, is available for innovation led high potential start-ups (HPSUs), to maintain liquidity and sustain their businesses in the short to medium term.

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