News & Events

Tánaiste and Minister Martin launch €11.5m Covid Support Scheme for events-sector businesses

Up to €50,000 available for SMEs involved in concerts, sport, cultural events, conferences or trade shows

The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar and Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin today (Thursday, 15 July 2021) launched a new support scheme to help companies working in the events sector with their fixed costs.

The €11.5 million Events Sector Covid Support Scheme (ESCSS) is targeted at SMEs in that sector which have been affected significantly by the Covid-19 public health restrictions. A grant of up to €50,000 is available to successful applicants as a contribution to their fixed costs.

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar TD said:

“The events sector has been particularly badly hit by the pandemic. Unfortunately this virus is one which loves gatherings of people, whether that’s by doing the things we all love and miss – gigs, matches, cultural events, or gathering for business reasons such as conferences or trade shows.

“Throughout the pandemic, we have tried to help businesses with their fixed costs, though the various grants, wage subsidies and low-cost loans that are in place. This Scheme is specifically for companies working in the events sector. So those businesses working to host the events themselves and also those providing the services required to put on live performance shows, trade shows, and festivals including event promotion and management companies, security, supply of sound, lighting and stage equipment companies.  It will provide a grant of up to €50,000 to help with fixed costs.

“Our vaccination programme is picking up and all adults are now able to register. There are brighter days ahead. Government will continue to help all businesses as they get back on their feet.”

Minister Catherine Martin said:

“The Events Industry was one of the first sectors to close and unfortunately will be one of the last to reopen. It provides work for tens of thousands of people and is the lifeblood for many services and suppliers in villages, towns and cities throughout the country.

“I am delighted to announce the new Events Sector Covid Support Scheme in conjunction with my colleague the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar. This will open for applications on August 4th through my Department’s website. This scheme aims to support businesses supplying services to the events and arts sectors. This is targeted at businesses and suppliers including those who support festivals, concerts, conferencing and live entertainment.”

The scheme will be run by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and is being funded via a €11.5m transfer from the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment. This scheme is in addition to the comprehensive package the Government has put in place to help businesses and workers during the pandemic, including the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS), the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP), the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS), the Music and Entertainment Business Assistance Scheme (MEBAS), the Small Business Assistance Scheme for COVID (SBASC), low-cost loans, the deferral and warehousing of tax liabilities and the waiver of commercial rates.

To be eligible for this scheme the business must have been ineligible for support under the Covid Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS) operated by Revenue.

Guidelines for the scheme can be found at

Queries on the scheme can be emailed to


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