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Business information

In this section you’ll find links to the most relevant agencies and organisations for business and enterprise:

Funding and support – local, national and international finance, support, training and information for business

Regulatory / Education, research and development / Other – legal requirements, taxation, third-level education and research, new enterprise policy directions and information

Independent business organisations – Chambers of commerce, business sector representatives

Clare business listings for information and contacts on local businesses and services, banks, business property, solicitors and professional advisors.

Disclaimer: Clare Local Authorities accept no responsibility for the accuracy or usefulness of the information contained herein.

Funding and support

BASIS - Business access to state information and services

Single access online resource for all obligations, opportunities and requirements for doing business in Ireland. Information on business start-up and development, paying taxes, employing staff, procurement and tenders and much more.

Web site: www.basis.ie

IDA Ireland

IDA is Ireland’s inward investment promotion agency. They partner with foreign investors helping them to set up and develop their business in Ireland.

Web site: www.idaireland.com

Enterprise Ireland

Enterprise Ireland is the government organisation responsible for the development and growth of Irish enterprises in world markets. They work in partnership with Irish enterprises to help them start, grow, innovate and win export sales on global markets. Enterprise Ireland provide funding and supports for companies - from entrepreneurs with plans for a high potential start-up through to large companies expanding their activities, improving efficiency and growing export sales. Support for companies focused on growth through international sales is a priority for Enterprise Ireland. They also provide funding and supports for college based researchers to assist in the development, protection and transfer of technologies into industry via licensing or spin-out companies.

Web site: www.enterprise-ireland.com

Connect Ireland

Connect Ireland is an innovative way to create new jobs in Ireland by harnessing the power of the global diaspora – at home and abroad. The mission of Connect Ireland is to attract foreign companies that are expanding internationally to Ireland through ordinary people – creating jobs and securing the future of the Irish economy. The Irish Government will financially reward those that attract new, sustainable jobs into the country.

Connect Ireland complements the existing work of IDA Ireland by attracting smaller companies that are expanding internationally to locate in Ireland.

Web site: www.connectireland.com

Skillnets – Enterprise-led Learning Networks

Skillnets is a state funded, enterprise-led support body dedicated to the promotion and facilitation of training and upskilling as key elements in sustaining Ireland's national competitiveness. Networks of enterprises are supported and funded to engage in training under the Training Networks Programme (TNP). These networks, now referred to as 'Skillnets', are led and managed by the enterprises themselves to design, manage and deliver specific training programmes across a broad range of industry and service sectors nationwide.

Web site: www.skillnets.ie

Local Enterprise Office Clare

The principal aim of the Local Enterprise Office (LEO) is to promote and develop the small and medium enterprise sector of the County (firms with 10 or fewer employees). The LEO provides training and supports, including grants and repayable loans, and is a recognised leader in the provision of business advice, counselling, mentoring, business skills and management development programmes.

Web site: www.localenterprise.ie/clare

Clare Local Development Company ( LEADER)

Clare Local Development Company aims to promote and deliver supports and services for social inclusion, enterprise, rural and community development, both from their own resources and in collaboration with other agencies. They provide a diverse range of supports and services to community and voluntary groups, social inclusion target groups, small businesses, farm families and potential entrepreneurs. The aim of Clare Local Development Company is to deliver as many services and supports as possible to the people and communities of Co Clare. A wide range of needs are being addressed through the local development services they deliver, including training, work placement, grants and advice.

Web site: www.cldc.ie

Western Development Commission

The Western Development Commission promotes social and economic development in Counties Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim, Roscommon, Mayo, Galway and Clare. They work to ensure that government policy is directed at improving the social and economic situation in the region and also develop projects in tourism, industry, marine, renewable energy, technology, organic agri-food etc. The Western Development Commission also operates the Western Development Fund and the Mirco-Loan Fund.

Web site: www.wdc.ie

Clann Credo

Clann Credo helps to build stronger communities by providing social finance for community growth. They offer a range of loan products to community, voluntary and charitable groups as well as social enterprises and community businesses.

Web site: www.clanncredo.ie

Micro-Finance Ireland

Microfinance Ireland has been funded by the Irish Government to provide loans to newly established and growing microenterprises (turnover less than €2m; staff less than 10) across all industry sectors that do not meet the conventional risk criteria applied by banks. In the first instance you should approach your bank for credit. In the event that credit is declined, you are eligible to apply to Microfinance Ireland for a loan.

Microfinance Ireland works in partnership with the County & City Enterprise Boards who can assist with training and guidance in preparing your business plan. They will also conduct an initial evaluation of the quality of your business proposal for a loan application.

Web site: www.microfinanceireland.ie

Business Angel Partnership

For business promoters and private investors. Matches private investors with pre-screened investment opportunities in start-up, early stage and developing businesses. Of benefit to investors, companies, and professional advisors.

Web site: www.businessangels.ie

Irish Venture Capital Association

Venture capital in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Members are venture capital firms which provide equity funding to growing unquoted companies. Associate members of the IVCA include firms that provide advisory services including corporate finance houses, commercial and intellectual property law firms, accountants and other advisers experienced in the venture capital field.

Web site: www.ivca.ie

Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland

SEAI play a leading role in transforming Ireland into a society based on sustainable energy structures, technologies and practices. They provide an online Business Support Centre which provides information on how saving energy can cut business costs and gives details of resources and financial assistance available to help businesses to make savings.

Web site: www.seai.ie

Bord Bia -Irish Food Board

The role of Bord Bia, the Irish Food Board, is to act as a link between Irish food, drink and horticulture suppliers and existing and potential customers throughout the world.  Their objective is to develop markets for Irish suppliers and to bring the taste of Irish food to more tables world-wide.

Web site: www.bordbia.ie

Bord Iascaigh Mhara – Irish Sea Fisheries Board

Bord Iascaigh Mhara helps to develop the Irish Seafood Industry by providing technical expertise, business support, funding, training and promoting responsible environmental practice.

Web site: www.bim.ie

Arts Council of Ireland

National agency for funding, developing and promoting the arts in Ireland.

Web site: www.artscouncil.ie

Crafts Council of Ireland

Provides services to the craft industry. Organises design showcases, exhibition and training programmes.

Web site: www.ccoi.ie

Science Foundation Ireland

Science Foundation Ireland invests in academic researchers and research teams who are most likely to generate new knowledge, leading edge technologies, and competitive enterprises in the fields of science and engineering underpinning three broad areas:

  • Biotechnology
  • Information and communications technology
  • Sustainable energy and energy-efficiency technologies

SFI makes grants based on the merit-reviews of distinguished scientists. SFI also advances co-operative efforts among education, government and industry that supports its field of emphasis and promotes Ireland’s ensuing achievements around the world

Web site: www.sfi.ie

FÁS - National Training and Employment Authority

Provides tailored training and employment programmes for business and individuals to develop the skills and competencies of individuals and enterprises in order for Ireland to further develop as a competitive, inclusive, knowledge-based economy.

Web site: www.fas.ie

Inter Trade Ireland

Seeks to boost North / South economic co-operation to expedite trade and business growth across the island; create an environment to make it easier to do business and increase the competitiveness of individual companies and the two economies in the global marketplace.

Web site: www.intertradeireland.com

Fáilte Ireland

The role of Failte Ireland is to support the tourism industry and work to sustain Ireland as a high-quality and competitive tourism destination. They provide a range of practical business supports to help tourism businesses to better manage and market their products and services. They work with the tourism industry in areas such as business support and resources, marketing and publicity, destination development and sector development.
 

They also work with other state agencies and representative bodies, at local and national levels, to implement and champion positive and practical strategies that will benefit Irish tourism and the Irish economy.

Web site: www.failteireland.ie

Citizens Information

Provides comprehensive information on all aspects of public services and entitlements for citizens in Ireland presented in an easy-to-understand way.Web site: www.citizensinformation.ie

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Regulatory / Education, research and development / Other

Companies Registrations Office

The Companies Registration Office is the central repository of public statutory information on Irish companies and business names. The core functions of the CRO are:

  • The incorporation of companies and the registration of business names.
  • The receipt and registration of post incorporation documents.
  • The enforcement of the Companies Acts in relation to the filing obligations of companies.
  • Making information available to the public.

Web site: www.cro.ie

Revenue Commissioners

The core business of the Revenue Commissioners is the assessment and collection of taxes and duties. In broad terms the work includes:

  • Assessing, collecting and managing taxes and duties that account for over 93% of exchequer revenue
  • Administering the customs regime for the control of imports and exports and collection of duties and levies on behalf of the EU
  • Working in co-operation with other state agencies in the fight against drugs and in other cross departmental initiatives
  • Carrying out agency work for other departments
  • Collection of PRSI for the Department of Social Protection
  • Provision of policy advice on taxation issues

Their website includes information on all aspects of personal and business taxation and a comprehensive array of on-line services.

Web site: www.revenue.ie

Department of Social Welfare

The Department of Social Welfare provide comprehensive information for employers, employees and job-seekers in relation to assistance, schemes and supports available through the department.

Web site: www.welfare.ie

Irish Patents Office

If you are providing a unique service or producing any original or innovative articles, then it is important to consider your intellectual property rights. You can register patents, trademarks and industrial designs with the Irish Patents Office.

Web site: www.patentsoffice.ie

Forfás

Forfás is Ireland's policy advisory board for enterprise, trade, science, technology and innovation.

Their primary functions include:

  • Providing independent and rigorous research, advice and support in the areas of enterprise and science policy
    This work informs the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation and wider government in its responses to the fast-changing needs of the global business environment
  • Ensuring the coherence of policies across the development agencies supporting enterprise
  • Evaluating enterprise policy interventions
  • Providing research and administrative support to independent advisory groups such as the National Competitiveness Council and the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs

Web site: www.forfas.ie

NERA - National Employment Rights Authority

Provides information for employers and employees, monitors employment conditions through its inspection services and can enforce compliance and seek redress.NERA covers many aspects of employment rights including wages, leave, working hours, redundancy, dismissal and notice.

Web site: https://www.workplacerelations.ie/en/Workplace_Relations_Bodies/National_Employment_Rights_Authority/

Teagasc

Teagasc are the Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority. Their mission is to support science-based innovation in the agri-food sector and the broader bio-economy that will underpin profitability, competitiveness and sustainability. They also provide specialist training and advice to mainstream and alternative farming, agricultural and food businesses.

Web site: www.teagasc.ie

Food Safety Authority

The principal function of the Food Safety Authority of Ireland is to take all reasonable steps to ensure that food produced, distributed or marketed in the state meets the highest standards of food safety and hygiene reasonably available and to ensure that food complies with legal requirements, or where appropriate with recognised codes of good practice

Web site: www.fsai.ie

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National University of Ireland, Galway

Web site: www.nuigalway.ie

Technology Transfer Office, NUIG

Web site: www.nuigalway.ie/tto/

Galway Mayo Institute of Technology

Web site: www.gmit.ie/research/

University of Limerick

Web site: www.ul.ie

Technology Transfer Office, University of Limerick

Web site: www2.ul.ie/web/WWW/Services/Research/Technology_Transfer_Office

Limerick Institute of Technology

Web site: www.lit.ie/research/default.aspx

Shannon College of Hotel Management

Web site: www.shannoncollege.com

Ennis Regional Learning Centre

Web site: www.lit.ie/Ennis/default.aspx

Burren College of Art

Web site: www.burrencollege.ie

 

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Independent business organisations

Chambers Ireland

Chambers Ireland is the largest business network on the island of Ireland. They are the umbrella group for local affiliated chambers. A chamber consists of local business representatives who join together to promote the economic and social development of their community in order to make it a better place in which to live, work and do business. Chambers Ireland’s mission is to represent the interests of member companies, to promote business competitiveness in Ireland and to enable the development of the chamber movement throughout the island. Its main areas of activities are as follows:

  • Lobbying Government on policy to create a better environment for business
  • Supporting SMEs
  • Facilitating trade
  • Strengthening the Chamber Network

Web site: www.chambers.ie

  Supply Network Shannon

Supply Network Shannon is an industry-led initiative aimed at representing, promoting, developing and connecting companies in the wider Shannon region of Ireland. The aims of Supply Network Shannon are:

  • Facilitating business opportunities
  • Enhancing cooperative learning
  • Developing market focus
  • Collaboration between platforms: Industry, Academic and Public Sector

Web Site: www.snshannon.com

IBEC - Irish Business and Employers Confederation

IBEC, the Irish Business and Employers Confederation, is the national voice of business and employers and is the umbrella body for Ireland’s leading sector groups and associations.

IBEC represents the interests of business in Ireland and provides a wide range of direct services to its 7,500 members, which range from the very small to the largest enterprises, employing over 70% of the private sector workforce in Ireland.

At a regional level IBEC:

  • Provides a local comprehensive human resource and industrial relations service to members
  • Lobbies for measures that encourage local enterprise and investment
  • Provides a forum for networking

Web site: www.ibec.ie

ISME

ISME, the Irish Small & Medium Enterprises Association, is an independent organisation for the Irish small & medium business sector and has in excess of 8,750 members nationwide. ISME offers a comprehensive range of Advisory Services, Publications & Reports, Independent Lobbying and Representation, Cost Saving Schemes, Training and Development Programmes, and Regional Networking Events designed to enhance the day-to-day running of members’ businesses.

Web site: www.isme.ie

Small Firms Association

The Small Firms Association (SFA) is the national organisation exclusively representing the needs of small enterprises (i.e. those employing less than 50 employees) in Ireland. The SFA provide a number of services to their members such as business advice, training management and acting as a voice for small businesses at government, regional and local level.

Web site: www.sfa.ie

IFA - Irish Farmers Association

Represents interests of all sectors in farming and rural communities. Provides access to rural broadband, training, advice, etc.
 

Web site: www.ifa.ie

ICOS - Irish Co-operative Organisation Society

ICOS serves and promotes commercial co-operative businesses and enterprise across multiple sectors of the Irish economy. As the umbrella organisation for the co-operative movement in Ireland, ICOS is focused on driving the evolution of the Irish co-operative sector through the promotion of best practice, change and helping to enhance the sustainability of their member co-ops.

Web site: www.icos.ie

Ireland US Council

Business organisation dedicated to building business links between Ireland and the US. The Council is headquartered in New York .
 

Web site: www.irelanduscouncil.com

American Chamber of Commerce Ireland

The American Chamber is the largest multinational business association in Ireland. The mission of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ireland is to promote a business environment that is attracted to US companies located in Ireland by representing their interests at a government level, in the media and by providing a forum through which ideas and information can be shared.

Web site: www.amcham.ie

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Content Last Updated/Reviewed: 12/04/13