News & Events

Bringing supports for small businesses under one roof

A Government of Ireland initiative, Taking Care of Business will bring more than 25 State bodies and services together to offer advice to small businesses in the Mid-West

  • Businesses called on to register for event showcasing the advice and supports available to small businesses from a diverse mix of State bodies 
  • Free half day event will allow businesses to meet experts from a range of public bodies 
  • Opportunity for small business owners to get advice on diversifying into new export markets in light of Brexit 

Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection Pat Breen TD, has called on existing small business owners, and people thinking of starting a business, to register their interest for the ‘Taking Care of Business’ event on Tuesday, 25 September at the Radisson Blu Hotel and Spa, Ennis Road, Limerick.

The half-day event is specifically targeted at people thinking of starting a business as well as small business owners and managers. In the context of Brexit, it is also an opportunity for businesses to seek advice from a range of experts on how to diversify and expand into new markets.

An initiative of the Government of Ireland, and run by Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation in conjunction with the Health and Safety Authority and the Food Safety Authority of Ireland, Taking Care of Business will bring together more than 25 State bodies, agencies and units, and builds on the success of previous events in recent years, which have been attended by approximately 2,500 people from across the country.

The event will have two separate strands:

  • In one part of the conference suite, State bodies will give presentations focusing on the key regulatory requirements for operating a business in Ireland, as well as on the supports available to help entrepreneurs develop their businesses; 
  • Meanwhile in another part of the conference suite, staff from the State bodies will welcome business people to information stands, talking directly to attendees and answering any questions they may have. 

Minister Breen will open the conference in September. Calling on businesses in the Mid-West to register their interest in the event, he said: “Following a very successful event in Dublin late last year, bringing Taking Care of Business to the Mid-West again demonstrates our ongoing commitment to regional development, a commitment shown across a range of activities and policy initiatives. The Mid-West Action Plan for Jobs, launched in late 2015, is well on its way to reaching its target of 23,000 more people in employment by 2020. Enterprise Ireland-supported jobs increased by 7 % last year, while IDA-supported jobs grew by 5 %.

“The national Action Plan for Jobs (APJ) also illustrates the importance we attach to the SME sector, which plays such a vital role in job creation. There is of course the Regional Enterprise Development Fund with funding of €60m – and two projects so far in the Mid West have already secured funding, the National Bioeconomy Innovation and Piloting facility at Lisheen, Co Tipperary, and the Emerald Aero cluster in Shannon.

“Taking Care of Business events allow small-business owners, entrepreneurs and start-ups to get advice, on one day, in one place from a variety of agencies, on topics as diverse as health and safety and access to finance, for instance. I am particularly pleased to see the event return to the Mid-West, a region with a long and proud tradition of innovation and enterprise.”

The State offices and agencies represented will provide information across a wide range of areas, including:

  • Tax, employment, and Health & Safety obligations;
  • Legal requirements for setting up and running a business;
  • Requirements in areas such as food and environmental safety;
  • Advice on government procurement and intellectual property;
  • Assistance and supports from enterprise agencies, and;
  • Brexit, and the kind of help and supports that are available, including the Brexit Loan Scheme, will be covered. 

A number of representative bodies from industry are also supporting the event and will be available to talk to attendees on the day.

To register for the event and for more details including the running order of presentations and the full list of State Bodies attending, please visit

Early booking is strongly advised as there are a limited number of places available.


The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation (DBEI) plays a key role in implementing the Government’s policies of stimulating the productive capacity of the economy and creating an environment which supports job creation and maintenance. The Department also has a remit to promote fair competition in the marketplace, protect consumers and safeguard workers.

If you would like more information about this topic, please call Press Office at (01) 631 2200 or email

With Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection Pat Breen TD, centre, following the launch of Taking Care of Business at the Enterprise Ireland offices in Shannon are (bottom row, from left to right) Anne Byrne, Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Mike Cantwell, CEO Innovate Limerick, Helen Downes, Chief Executive, Shannon Chamber, and (top row, left to right) Frank Murray, Managing Partner of the Linkage-Partnership, and Harriet Cotter, Senior Regional Development Executive, Enterprise Ireland. The half-day event, on September 25 at the Radisson Blu Hotel and Spa, Ennis Road, Limerick, is specifically targeted at people thinking of starting a business as well as small business owners and managers. For more details, visit

Notes for Editors

The State offices, agencies and services represented at the event will be:

  • Local Enterprise Offices
  • Revenue Commissioners
  • Enterprise Ireland
  • The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission
  • Companies Registration Office
  • Food Safety Authority of Ireland
  • Health and Safety Authority
  • Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement
  • Workplace Relations Commission
  • Office of Government Procurement
  • Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
  • Data Protection Commissioner
  • National Standards Authority of Ireland
  • Microfinance Ireland
  • Credit Review Office
  • Prompt Payment Code
  • Personal Injuries Assessment Board
  • Science Foundation Ireland
  • Skillnet Ireland (supporting and working with businesses to address their current and future skill needs)
  • Health Products Regulatory Authority
  • Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland
  • Solvit (informal problem-solving network for EU citizens and businesses)
  • Patents Office
  • IntertradeIreland
  • Enterprise Europe Network
  • Supporting SMEs online tool (Access to Finance) 

There will be short presentations from more than 20 of the public bodies on the day – these will be split into three separate sessions. Helen Downes Chief Executive of Shannon Chamber, Frank Murray, Managing Partner of The Linkage-Partnership (TLP) which is focussed on international business development and collaboration, and Mike Cantwell, CEO of Innovate Limerick, will chair the sessions.

‘Taking Care of Business’ is supported by the SFA, Chambers Ireland, Shannon Chamber, Limerick Chamber, Ennis Chamber, County Tipperary Chamber, ISME, RGDATA, ACCA, IBEC, IDA Ireland, the Construction Industry Federation and the Hardware Association of Ireland.

‘The twitter hashtags for the event are #supportforbusiness. and #TCOB2018