Criteria for Financial Assistance

We can assist in the establishment and/or development of new and existing enterprises from individuals/sole traders, companies and community groups subject to the following eligibility criteria.

Eligible Business Types

  • Businesses with a manufacturing/production aspect
  • Businesses in internationally traded services (export oriented businesses)
  • Local service businesses that are unique/innovative and have export potential

The Enterprise must:

  • Be in the commercial sphere
  • Demonstrate a market for the product/service
  • Have a capacity for growth and new job creation
  • Not employ more than 10 people

What Costs Are Eligible?

Our Financial Supports may cover business costs directly attributable to;

Amount of Grant Aid

Overall the cumulative level of grants to a micro enterprise must not exceed €150,000 over a three year period. The payments of all grants will be subject to enterprises reaching agreed milestones as per their business plans and the Board's letter of offer.

Ineligible Businesses and Projects

Under the terms of its remit some businesses and projects can not receive financial support from the Local Enterprise Office, some of these may include;

  • Retail outlets and professional services (including consultancies)
  • Areas of enterprise which involve displacement of existing jobs or business: Builders, Hairdressers, Cafés, Pubs, Hotels, General Printers, Construction, Trades etc., would come within this category. Generally, where there are a large number of operators within a sector, the Local Enterprise Office has to have a regard to the implications of grant aiding one or some, possibly putting the others at a competitive disadvantage
  • Conferences and Seminars
  • Projects which are contrary to public policy
  • Duplication of support for projects which would be eligible for assistance from other State Agencies or EU funded Operational Programmes
  • Existing Firms which already have an established relationship with Enterprise Ireland or IDA.  Please do not apply to the Local Enterprise Office if you have an existing application for the same project under consideration by Enterprise Ireland
  • Projects involving primary agricultural production
  • Projects with employees in excess of 10 people
  • Mobile assets, i.e. cars, motor vans, laptops, mobile machinery etc.
  • Projects deemed to be capable of proceeding in any event without Board assistance i.e. deadweight
  • Projects essentially comprising importation and distribution
  • Own Labour Research costs

Refundable Aid

A proportion of the total financial supports provided by the Local Enterprise Office each year must be in a refundable form.  Accordingly, repayable grants may be provided in which case grants are issued subject to the normal conditions.  Promoters are then required to make repayments in accordance with agreed schedules, usually following an initial moratorium period.