New companies want easier access to funding

Coming up with a viable idea, putting a business plan together and starting a business isn’t easy. However, growing that business into something that’s successful is tough. In Ireland, it seems, early stage companies aren’t getting, or are simply not availing of, the right supports.

A survey of 417 early stage companies in Ireland shows that the majority (81%) of entrepreneurs find it difficult to get support to grow their business. This figure was 72% in 2014. 79% surveyed in 2015 found access to funding and being able to recruit the right people as major obstacles.

“We must make early stage funding easier and more accessible”

The majority of new companies in Ireland also don’t avail of research and development supports like innovation vouchers or innovation partnerships. New firms also don’t look at developing their intellectual property (IP). 64% of those surveyed have neither patents nor trademarks.

Workspaces are increasingly hard to find. There is a national shortage of suitable co-working space and the share of new companies working from home has gone up from 40% in 2014 to 49% in 2015, suggests the survey.*

Support from large corporates

New company owners are also reluctant to seek support from large, established firms. Only one in ten respondents availed of support from large corporates when building their businesses.

Responding to the survey, Colm Lyon, who started, grew and sold his company Realex payments for €115 million said, “Perhaps the most important – and often misunderstood aspect of [early stage business] support is the availability and easy access to early stage funding.

“We must make early stage funding easier and more accessible. In doing so, we accelerate the development of the business so it can adapt faster, learn more and increase its chances of success.”

*The full survey, conducted by Amarach Research for Startup Ireland is available online.

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