· More than 27 State bodies come together to answer questions and provide advice to small business owners and managers
· Focus on access to finance options for SMEs
16 October 2014
Over five hundred small business owners and managers today (Thursday) attended a one-stop-shop event for SMEs, ‘Taking Care of Business’, in The Printworks, Dublin Castle.
This free half-day event was organised by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation to provide people thinking of starting a business and existing entrepreneurs with the information they need from across the public sector.
‘Taking Care of Business’ brought together more than 27 State bodies in two strands with presentations in one area and information stands in a separate area. The information stands were manned throughout the event by experts who spoke directly to attendees and answered questions in an informal setting; in the hall 18 concise presentations were given with a focus on key regulatory requirements and assistance available to help entrepreneurs develop their businesses.
Speaking at the event the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Richard Bruton T.D., said
“Two thirds of all new jobs come from start-ups in their first five years of existence, and we are putting in place a range of measures through the Action Plan for Jobs to provide better supports in this area. Yesterday’s Budget made a significant difference in this area. One crucial area is awareness – the Government has a range of great schemes to support start-ups and small businesses, however many businesses are simply unaware of them. As part of our drive to encourage more start-ups and support more SMEs, we are determined to better promote these schemes and encourage more businesses to take them up.
“Taking Care of Business” is part of a wider effort to communicate better with business and promote awareness and understanding of the full range of Government supports that are available for start-ups and the SME sector. This event will allow small business owners to informally ask questions and get advice from a diverse mix of government agencies.”
A number of representative bodies from industry supported the event and were available to talk to attendees on the day. ‘Taking Care of Business’ was opened by Donal de Buitléir, Director of Publicpolicy.ie. Gina Quinn, CEO, Dublin Chamber of Commerce and Senator Feargal Quinn chaired the remaining sessions.
Minister for Business & Employment, Ged Nash TD, also visited the event in Dublin Castle today. He said, “Entrepreneurs and those starting their own businesses are busy people, so to have all the information, state bodies and advice available to them in one Taking Care of Business event makes good sense.
“Part of my agenda as Minister with responsibility for SMEs is to make it as easy as possible to start a business and create jobs. This event makes vital information on saving your business money, the State supports and tools available to SMEs and the regulations that affect businesses readily available.”
Today’s event builds on a pilot event in October 2013 in Dublin Castle, which was attended by 500 people. The feedback from the pilot was overwhelmingly positive, with 89% of attendees surveyed finding the format worked well and 80% agreeing that their business would benefit from having attended.
The 2014 events are expanding on the number of State bodies at the pilot and have brought ‘Taking Care of Business’ outside Dublin. Earlier this year TCOB events were held in Limerick, Galway and Cork and another event is planned for Waterford in early 2015.
For more details including the running order of presentations and the full list of State bodies attending, please visit takingcareofbusiness.ie.
Photos to follow.