Retail Incentive Scheme

REtail Scheme


  • Stimulate new retail activity in Galway City and county towns.
  • Support existing retailers to expand and grow.
  • Increase footfall and attractiveness of the city and town centres.
  • Reduce vacancy rates in the City’s retail areas and town centres.
  • Increase footfall and attract new visitors to Galway City & Towns by providing a greater range of retail and commercial activity.


New Incentives to Encourage Retail in Galway

Business Incentive Scheme

Establising or Expanding in County Galway towns: CLICK FOR DETAILS

Galway County Council has passed a new business incentive scheme to encourage new retailers and to support the development of existing retailers in County Galway. This initiative is part of the expanded role of the local authority as a driver and supporting agency for local economic and community development and is another element in a range of supports introduced by Galway County Council, including the recently adopted business friendly Development Contributions Scheme.

 Announcing the scheme, Director of Services (Acting), Catherine McConnell said “This initiative aims to support the use of vacant commercial premises in the principal towns of the county. A financial incentive in the form of a Grant directly related to Rates liability will be provided for both landlords and new aspiring business owners/leases to occupy vacant premises in our towns by lowering entry costs in the first three years of business.”

 The scheme will apply to any new businesses that choose to establish in a commercial premises in the qualifying area that have been vacant for a period of 12 months immediately prior to opening. The scheme can also apply to businesses that are expanding into commercial premises immediately adjacent to their current location.

Catherine added “In order to ensure that small businesses are the key beneficiaries of the scheme, the scheme will only apply to businesses which have a total rates bill not exceeding €3,000 in a calendar rates year. Qualifying businesses will be eligible for grant equivalent to 100% of total rate paid in subject year (12 months of trading), 50% of total rate paid in year 2 and 25% of total rate paid in year 3.”

The above scheme which will come into effect on 1st June 2016 shall only apply to towns in County Galway in areas zoned for town centre purposes in any current or new local area plan only as a pilot scheme which will be reviewed by the Council after a period of 6 to 12 months.

Retail Incentive Scheme

To complement the above financial incentive, Local Enterprise Office (LEO) Galway is working with the Planning departments in both Galway City & County Council along with INTREO & Microfinance Ireland to provide joined up support to assist in the development of retail in Galway.

Coordinating the retail scheme, Head of Enterprise Galway Breda Fox said “the LEO office is committed to continue to develop and promote a pro-active, pro-business environment which supports enterprise and enterprising people throughout Galway City and County. Offering a streamlined service, the initiative is putting micro and small business at the heart of job creation locally.  Our aim is to overcome the typical barriers to success that local retail businesses face such as management skills, access to finance or lack of marketing or planning skills”.

 The scheme provides the supports required for potential retailers and existing retailers to develop with strong planning in place in order to increase their chances of success. LEO Galway will provide a range of supports including confidential one to one business advice from our business advisors and a free place on a start your own business programme to assist in getting a new retail project off the ground. In order to assist in the development of a business plan, the LEO will provide expert mentoring to support clients to develop a business plan which will be important in terms of accessing any financial supports from the financial institutions or from our partners in Microfinance Ireland.

LEO Galway will also link with the Planning Departments in Galway City Council and Galway County Council to provide fast track pre-planning meetings with officials from the relevant local authority. LEO Galway can also organise meetings with advisors in INTREO with a view to assessing if there are any jobs schemes which may be beneficial such as the Jobs Plus initiative which encourages and rewards employers who employ jobseekers from the Live Register.

For more information, call LEO Galway on (091)509090 or email Ricky to arrange a 1:1 business advisory meeting and to arrange access to the above supports.

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