News & Events

Tánaiste opens new Brexit Loan for small business

Up to €25,000 available

The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar TD today (23 November 2020) opened a new scheme to help small businesses prepare for Britain’s exit from the single market and customs union at the end of this year.

The new Microfinance Ireland (MFI) Brexit Business Loan, will provide up to €25,000 to businesses whose turnover already is or is likely to fall 15% or more or if the business has a short term cashflow need as a result of Brexit.  Loans are available for between six months and three years.

The Tánaiste said:  

“I know it’s been a really hard year, especially for our small, local businesses and imminent Brexit feels like another bodyblow on the way. This new loan is just one of the ways we are helping business to prepare. It will provide low cost finance of up to €25,000 and business owners can apply through MFI.  77% of MFI’s lending is to businesses outside of Dublin, which is important as businesses all over Ireland will feel the negative effects of Brexit.

“If you are a business owner and are wondering where to start, I’d recommend filling out our Brexit Readiness Checker first and having a look at what needs to be done in your business. Then please reach out and use the help that’s there.”

Damien English, Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail said:

“January 1st is fast approaching for many Irish businesses whose trade will be negatively impacted on as a result of Brexit. The MFI Brexit Business Loan scheme is an assured financial product that will provide some certainty to those sole traders and limited companies with fewer than 10 employees in Ireland as they continue to work through their Brexit readiness plans.”  

MFI CEO Garrett Stokes said:

“Businesses need to urgently start planning for the consequences of Brexit. While the impact will be greatest on exporters, importers need to determine their supply chain and source of imports and plan for any delays or changes required.  Many businesses will be negatively impacted by Brexit or suffer a short term cashflow impact. The Microfinance Ireland Brexit Loan is ideally suited for businesses with these needs.”

Notes to Editors

Product Features

  • Loans from €5,000 – €25,000*
  • Loan Terms from six months to three years** (shorter terms depending on purpose)
  • Interest rate of 4.5% APR if submitted through the Local Enterprise Office Network or other referral partners, or 5.5% APR if you apply directly
  • No fees/charges or any hidden costs
  • Fixed repayments with no penalty for early repayment 

* The maximum credit exposure for all MFI borrowings is €25,000

**Depending on the term of the loan, interest only repayments for three months may apply in line with our standard products 

Who can apply?

  • Any business* (Sole Trader, Partnership or Limited Company) with less than 10 employees and annual turnover of up to €2m
  • Unable to secure finance from a Bank or commercial lending provider
  • Business turnover is or potentially could be impacted by a minimum of 15% or the business has a short term cashflow need as a result of Brexit.  

* While Businesses involved in Alcohol Production are deemed to be an excluded sector for MFI Loans, they are eligible to apply for an MFI Brexit Loan. 


The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment (DETE) 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 has lead responsibility for Irish policy on global trade and inward investment and a remit to promote fair competition in the marketplace, protect consumers and safeguard workers.

For further information please contact Press Office, D/Enterprise, Trade and Employment, or (01) 631-2200