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€375k in new funding to support aviation sector in Ireland – Minister Bruton

1st July 2013 - Richard Bruton TD

Minister launches Enterprise Ireland Competitive Feasibility Fund

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton TD, today (Monday) launched the new Enterprise Ireland €375K Competitive Feasibility Fund aimed at stimulating new start-ups, or expansion of existing business activity in the aviation sector. This fund, which can provide up to €25,000 per project, is now open for applications, and will remain open until Monday 16 September 2013.

Today’s announcement marks the delivery of a key measure under the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs, and is aimed at meeting the needs of the aviation industry and supporting the growth of international aviation companies in Ireland. This initiative also follows on the Government’s publication of the ‘Shannon Aviation Business Development Task Force Final Report’ which is focussed on building an environment which will encourage and support entrepreneurship and business expansion in the aviation sector.

The Competitive Feasibility Fund will support new start up companies or individual entrepreneurs to investigate the viability of a new significant growth oriented business or proposition in the aviation sector. It will also support established companies or groups of businesses to examine the potential for expansion, diversification or spinning out of a new enterprise in the industry. The funding will enable the promoters to reach firm conclusions regarding the project’s viability and strategies for developing and commercialising the innovative product or service on international markets.

The fund is open to applications from the Aviation Sector including financial services associated with the sector, Aircraft and Engine leasing, Aviation software and IT, Training, Travel related software and related services, Small Aircraft Assembly, Aircraft Dismantle, Maintenance Repair Operations Airframe and Components, Composite Repair, Parts Manufacture, Aviation Services, and other engineering and technical activities.

Making the announcement, Minister Bruton said: “A key part of the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs is targeting specific sectors where we have established strengths, and supporting growth and expansion in those areas in order to create jobs. Aviation is one such sector – we already have in place a world-class aviation ecosystem, which offers tremendous potential for new and exciting businesses to carve out opportunities for innovative products and services. In particular, as part of our plans for the Shannon region, we are targeting the establishment of an international aviation centre of excellence to support growth and jobs in the region.

“Today’s announcement of a new €375,000 Enterprise Ireland Competitive Feasibility Fund is a part of this plan, and will help provide support to innovative companies seeking to grow and create jobs in the sector”.

Welcoming today’s announcement Rose Hynes, Chair of the Aviation Business Development Task Force said: “Our mandate was to seek out new opportunities for an autonomous Shannon Airport and to evaluate the feasibility of creating an international aviation centre of excellence in Shannon.

I welcome this Enterprise Ireland Aviation initiative today, as a key support to help achieve these objectives. I look forward to working closely with Enterprise Ireland, prospective clients, and other relevant agencies in promoting aviation sector growth opportunities”.

Jerry Moloney, Enterprise Ireland’s Regional Director for the Mid West Region who is tasked with managing this initiative added “I urge all those in the Aviation Sector to utilise this unique sector specific offering to explore the feasibility of any new business growth opportunities open to them”.

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