Enterprise Ireland says it invested €31 million in Irish startups in 2017 and has launched a new regional Competitive Start Fund. 

Last year, 181 highly promising new firms, 55% of which are based outside of Dublin, were supported by Enterprise Ireland’s High Potential StartUp (HSPU) and Competitive Start Funds (CSFs).

At the annual Startup Showcase event in Croke Park, attended by over 600 people, EI announced a new €500,000 Competitive Start Fund for regionally based startups.

“In 2018 we will be putting a spotlight on companies in the MarineTech and DeepTech sectors.”

“Last year, we supported 181 high-quality startups. 55% of these companies are in regions outside of Dublin, in line with our strategic objective of driving growth at a regional level. Over one third were female-led startups,” says Joe Healy, manager, HPSU Division, Enterprise Ireland.

“In 2018 we will be putting a spotlight on companies in the MarineTech and DeepTech sectors. Our Competitive Start Fund for regionally based startups will open for applications on February 27, and I encourage any early-stage businesses and entrepreneurs based outside of Dublin to apply by 13 March,” says Healy.

An action plan

“The Action Plan for Jobs is clear in its focus on regional development and growth, and I am happy to see that more than half of the startups supported by Enterprise Ireland last year are outside of Dublin,” says Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD.

Startups supported by Enterprise Ireland in 2017 include:

  • 90 new High Potential Startups (HPSU) – startup businesses with the potential to create ten jobs and €1million in sales within three to four years of starting up.
  • 91 new Competitive Start Funds (CSF), which inject critical early-stage funding into new businesses.
  • 67 investments were in female-led startups amounting to 35% of all start-up investments.
  • Over half (55%) of startups supported during 2017 are based in regions outside Dublin.
  • 15 spin-out companies from the third-level sector.
  • 166 entrepreneurs participated in the nationwide New Frontiers programme.
  • 18 investments in overseas entrepreneurs who have moved to Ireland to establish their businesses.
HPSU Infographic