Returned emigrants generate 48 jobs

Participants in a Government-backed programme for returning emigrants starting businesses created 48 new jobs and generated €1.3m in revenues.

The 38 participants on the second year of the Back for Business programme, supported by the Department of Foreign Affairs, reported positive results. Turnover for all participants combined increased by over 70pc during the six months of the programme to a total of €1.3m

A total of 48 new jobs were created by the participants who now employ 89 people between them.

“Potential entrepreneurs returning home can often bring significant advantages such as a strong network of international contacts, proficiency in foreign languages and a greater understanding of export markets”

92pc said they felt nearer to achieving their ambitions having participated.

And now the Government has called for new applicants to join the 2020 programme which will run from January to July 2020.

There is no charge for those selected to participate and the closing date for applications is January 7, 2020.

Those interested in learning more can download a brochure and register their interest in receiving an application form from http://www.backforbusiness.com/

The Diaspora delivers

“Global Irish – Ireland’s Diaspora Policy, supports the successful return to Ireland of our Diaspora,” said Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development Ciarán Cannon, TD.  

“Back for Business is a practical measure to implement this commitment. This programme can make a real difference to returned and returning emigrants, who want to establish new businesses in Ireland. The successful delivery of this programme will enable these entrepreneurs to build new businesses and contribute to our economy and society.”

Back for Business has been designed and is being implemented by Fitzsimons Consulting, specialists in areas related to entrepreneurship and growth.

“Potential entrepreneurs returning home can often bring significant advantages such as a strong network of international contacts, proficiency in foreign languages and a greater understanding of export markets,” said Paula Fitzsimons, founder and managing director of Fitzsimons Consulting.

“However, they can also have gaps in their knowledge of the supports and the well-developed entrepreneurial ecosystem available to early stage entrepreneurs. Their professional and personal networks in Ireland have been adversely affected given the years that they have spent out of the country. Back for Business is designed to bridge these gaps, while also addressing the general challenges that all entrepreneurs face when establishing a business. I am delighted that the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has made this possible.”

Those selected to join Back for Business this year will take part in round table sessions, focused on goals and milestones and facilitated by voluntary Lead Entrepreneurs, who have experience of successfully starting and growing a business.

This year’s Lead Entrepreneurs are: Áine Denn, co-founder of Altify (now Upland Altify); Brian Crowley, Broadlake and founder of TTM Healthcare; Gillian O’Dowd, co-founder of Azon Recruitment Group; Micheal Hoyne, founder of Merlyn Showering; Nikki Evans, founder of PerfectCard; and Thomas Ennis, founder of the Thomas Ennis Group.

Main image: Lead entrepreneur Áine Denn of Upland Altify; Minister of State for Diaspora and International Development Ciarán Cannon, TD; and past participant Barra Kelly of Xusa Properties and Structural Home Design

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Written by John Kennedy (john.kennedy3@boi.com)

Published: 12 November, 2019