News & Events

€3m Investment to Support Entrepreneurs in the Regions – Minister Bruton

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton T.D., has today (Friday) announced that up to €3m is being made available for investment with accelerator managers to increase the number of accelerators in the regions outside of Dublin, and issued an open competitive call to stakeholders to signal their interest in establishing accelerators.

The €3m Scheme is the first competitive initiative to be launched under the €40m competitive regional jobs fund announced by the Government on Friday 15th January. It is targeted that a further €3m will be leveraged with additional private sector investment to support this entrepreneurship initiative.

The funding has been provided by the Department of Jobs, through Enterprise Ireland. The launch of this competitive call is a key action under the Action Plan for Jobs 2016 targeting an increase in the number and quality of Irish start-ups that can create regional jobs through winning business at home and overseas.

Making the announcement Minister Bruton said: “Jobs are growing in every region right across the country, but they are growing faster in some regions than in others.  A key part of our action plan for jobs is accelerating jobs growth right across the country, and a key part of this is encouraging more start-ups in every region. Start-ups create two thirds of all new jobs, and if we can support more businesses to start-up and more businesses to survive, this will make a major impact on the level of job-creation in each region.

“Today’s announcement is the first competitive call for expressions of interest under the Accelerator Development Scheme which aims ultimately to create more accelerator spaces where start-ups can locate their businesses and access supports around the country. I encourage business-people and other stakeholders in every region to get involved in this initiative".

Enterprise Ireland is inviting expressions of interests from domestic and international stakeholders with the capital and the relevant expertise to make this initiative a success.

Julie Sinnamon, CEO of Enterprise Ireland, commented: “The National Policy Statement on Entrepreneurship noted that a key challenge is to develop the regional spread of start-up activity by enhancing the start-up environment outside Dublin. It also noted that this will include working to develop targeted accelerators where gaps exist to enhance the quality of start-ups, with a particular focus on the regional start-up ecosystem. This Scheme has been specifically designed to meet that challenge and it forms a core part of Enterprise Ireland’s strategic objective of supporting the creation of a greater number of successful start-ups across the country”.

Enterprise Ireland is interested in funds that will support entrepreneurship outside of Dublin in key strategic sectors including; Food, Agritech, ICT, Cleantech, Lifesciences, Financial Services, Internationally Traded Services, and Manufacturing.

The scheme will be marketed over the coming weeks and deadline for expressions of interest is 3pm on March 31st, 2016. Further information can be found at:


For further information contact:

Conor O’Donovan, Head of Marketing & Communications, Enterprise Ireland   Tel: 01 7272912, Email:

Press Office, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Tel. 01 6312200 or Email: 

Notes to the Editor:

€40m Competitive Regional Jobs Fund

The €40 million fund will be rolled out on a phased basis, grouped under the following 5 themes.

  • Regional Accelerator projects
  • Opportunities to drive greater company/sector collaboration/clustering in the regions
  • Driving procurement opportunities for start-ups and established small businesses
  • Strengthening Third-level as a driver of regional enterprise
  • Strengthening the start-up ecosystem locally


Scheme Objectives

The overall vision of the Accelerator Development Scheme (2015-2017) is to increase the number of accelerators operating in the Irish market to support entrepreneurship, company creation and job creation in new Manufacturing and Internationally Traded Services companies in Ireland. 

To realise this vision, the objectives are;

  • To encourage and leverage private sector investment in the provision of accelerator programmes.
  • To leverage domestic and international private sector investment with the objective of enhancing the entrepreneurial eco-system in Ireland.
  • To support the start-up strategies of Enterprise Ireland’s sectors with expertise and early stage investment.
  • To seek innovative funding solutions that reflect current international best practice to enhance the accelerator offering available to Irish entrepreneurs or entrepreneurs locating to Ireland seeking to establish new Manufacturing or Internationally Traded Services companies.


Objectives of Current Call 

  • The objective of the Scheme is to act as a catalyst for the establishment of new accelerators in line with international best practice and involving the following characteristics:
  • An application process that is open to all new prospective Manufacturing and Internationally Traded Service companies, yet highly competitive.
  • Provision of pre-seed investment, usually in exchange for equity.
  • A focus on small teams rather than individual founders.
  • Time-limited support comprising programmed events and intensive mentoring from people with extensive relevant commercial experience