Sunday, February 12th 2017
Local Enterprise Week set to inspire and motivate thousands of entrepreneurs and small business owners nationwide
14,500 small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs expected to attend over 380 events during Local Enterprise Week in March.
The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Ms. Mary Mitchell O’ Connor T.D. has welcomed plans by the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) to host more than 380 inspiring events around the country for an estimated 14,500 start-ups, aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners during Local Enterprise Week 2017. The focus of Local Enterprise Week is to increase awareness of the range of LEO supports and services available to micro and small enterprises.
Running from March 5th to 10th, all 31 LEOs will be celebrating Local Enterprise Week with a range of events for start-ups, aspiring entrepreneurs and small businesses in their area.
Entrepreneurs of all ages will have the opportunity to participate in workshops, seminars, advice clinics and one-to-one mentoring on every aspect of business, including: starting a business, trading on-line, finance, tendering, growing a business through digital marketing, cyber security, intellectual property, and being Brexit-ready.
Local Enterprise Week officially kicks-off on Sunday, March 5th with the national final of Ireland’s Best Young Entrepreneur (IBYE) competition in Google Headquarters in Dublin. IBYE, which is an initiative of the Local Enterprise Offices and supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and Enterprise Ireland, achieved an unprecedented number of entries across all 31 LEOs with more than 1,800 young people competing for the €2 million IBYE investment fund.
Welcoming the extensive range of events planned by the LEOs for Local Enterprise Week, Minister Mitchell O’ Connor said: “I am very impressed with the comprehensive programme of events organised by the LEOs for Local Enterprise Week 2017. I would encourage every start-up and small business owner to make it their business to check out and participate in the events taking place in their locality. It is important that anyone starting or growing a business is fully aware of the extensive range of enterprise supports that are available to them. As set out in the Action Plan for Jobs, 2017, I also want to encourage more micro and small businesses to grow international sales and diversify into Europe and beyond. The LEOs are the first-stop-shop on hand to help entrepreneurs and small business owners embark on this journey.”
Kieran Comerford of the Local Enterprise Offices said that Local Enterprise Week was the ideal ‘shop window’ to show the wide range of supports on offer to start-ups, sole traders and small businesses. He said: “Local Enterprise Week, which takes place from March 5th to 10th, is a collaboration on a national scale between LEOs, local business communities, Government Departments, other units within Local Authorities, and State support agencies. We urge those in business or anyone thinking of starting a business to find out what events are taking place in their locality. We hope these events will inspire and motivate thousands of entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs across every region. Small businesses continue to be the backbone of the Irish economy, with huge potential to grow and create jobs.”
At the programme launch in the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation on Kildare Street in Dublin, the Minister met with successful entrepreneurs, including Jeanne Mahony of Hope Beer in Fingal, Diarmuid Byrne of EquiRatings in Carlow, Lisa Johnston of Cillian Johnston Cabinet Makers in Wicklow, and Ian Dunne of Dunne Eco in Offaly. All four have benefitted from training, mentoring and financial assistance from their LEO.
The Minister was joined at the launch by Greg Swift, Head of Enterprise, LEO Dublin City representing the LEOs; Paul Reid, Chief Executive, Fingal County Council, representing the County and City Management Association (CCMA) Economic, Enterprise, Community and Culture Committee; and Mark Christal, Enterprise Ireland.
Event listings for Local Enterprise Week (March 5th to 10th 2017) are available from www.localenterprise.ie and by searching #localenterprise on social media.