Enterprise Ireland has revealed details of its €750,000 Competitive Start Fund (CSF) aimed at female entrepreneurs.
Up to €50,000 in equity funding is available to a maximum of 15 successful female applicants with fledgling companies.
As well as securing the funding, 10 of the successful applicants will also have the opportunity to participate in Dublin BIC’s INNOVATE accelerator programme.
Delivered over a 12-week period in the Guinness Enterprise Centre, the interactive INNOVATE programme will increase the capabilities of the participants and move them to investor-ready within a short period.
Last year, one in three companies who received CSF investment from Enterprise Ireland were female-led.
The purpose of this CSF is to accelerate the growth of female-led start-up companies that have the potential to employ more than 10 people and achieve €1 million in export sales within three years. The fund is designed to enable those companies reach key commercial and technical milestones which will ensure delivery of their product or service to an international audience.
Jobs Minister Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD said:
”Enterprise Ireland’s dedicated Competitive Start Fund for Female Entrepreneurs was put in place five years ago to encourage more women to start businesses and to provide a launch platform for business women in the Manufacturing and Internationally Traded Services sectors.
"Last year, 34% of CSF recipients were female entrepreneurs and this new €750,000 fund for 2017 will provide valuable and practical support for the next generation of female-led companies with global ambition to compete in export markets”.
Enterprise Ireland's female entrepreneurship manager Sarita Johnston added:
“Working with ambitious start-ups led by women is a key focus for Enterprise Ireland and the purpose of the CSF is to accelerate the growth of start-up companies that have the capability to become high potential startup (HPSU) companies. We have seen a major leap in female-led early-stage companies since the commencement of our initiatives in 2012 – from 7% of HPSUs to 20% in 2016."
The Competitive Start Fund for Female Entrepreneurs will close for submissions at 3pm on Wednesday 17 May 17th. Full details can be found here.