Small companies from across the region are being encouraged to put innovation at the very top of their business agenda.
To help make this a reality, John Magee, Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Mayo is highlighting the new Agile Innovation Fund from Enterprise Ireland which can give local companies rapid access to innovation funding.
The new measure has been introduced by Enterprise Ireland and can help clients of Local Enterprise Office Mayo respond more quickly to market opportunities and challenges, including those posed by Brexit.
Offering fast-track approval and a streamlined online application process, the new Agile Innovation Fund will allow companies, including small companies, to access up to 45% or 50% in support for product, process or service development projects with a total cost of up to €300,000.
Responding to the export challenges and opportunities presented to companies, the new fund is designed to help companies develop new products, processes and services for new market opportunities, enabling exporters to respond quickly and maximise export performance.
Highlighting the fund to local companies, John Magee, Head of Enterprise with Local Enterprise Office Mayo said: "The new Agile Innovation Fund is targeted at small companies with short product life cycles, which need to develop products rapidly. There's a streamlined online application process for clients of Local Enterprise Offices, with fast-track approval. What will make this fund very appealing to small businesses in our county is that it can help fund areas like the development of prototypes, consultancy services and even staff salaries, where eligible."
Investment in innovation by Irish companies has been found to be a key factor in driving their global performance. A survey of 2,000 Enterprise Ireland clients in 2016 found that those who availed of innovation supports (specifically capability, funding and collaboration support) reported on average a 67% growth in global sales.
On June 28th, Enterprise Ireland is hosting an Agile Innovation Supports Event for interested companies at Treacy's Oakwood Hotel in Shannon, which is free to attend.
The new Agile Innovation Fund is just one of the many supports and services that Local Enterprise Office Mayo can offer businesses; both financially and non-financially. General business advice, training, mentoring, assistance with trading online as well as exporting internationally as just some of the other areas that Local Enterprise Office Mayo are on hand to help the Mayo business community with, as well as financial assistance in certain circumstances.
As part of their training offering, Local Enterprise Office Mayo is partnering with InterTradeIreland to deliver an interactive workshop covering the topic of Public Procurement on the 27th of June from 7:30am - 10:30am at the Great National Hotel, Ballina, the aim of which is to demystify, educate and engage businesses around public procurement, a market worth in the region of €12bn pa. nationally.
More information around the new Agile Innovation Fund, as well as further information on the full suite of supports and services provided through Local Enterprise Office Mayo is available at www.localenterprise.ie/mayo.