The Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys, announced the second call of the Enterprise Ireland pilot Online Retail Scheme.
The €1.25 million fund is targeted at online retailers to encourage the acceleration of their online offerings and can be used to fund research, strategy development, implementation and training.
The Scheme will open for applications on Wednesday, 19 June and will remain open for six weeks, closing to applications at 3.00pm on Wednesday, 31 July 2019.
Online Retail Scheme
Under this second call, successful Irish retailer applicants seeking to strengthen their online offering can receive funding ranging from €10,000 to €25,000.
The Scheme’s purpose is to support online retailers to strategically enhance their online sales capabilities to increase competitiveness and subsequently scale their businesses in international markets.
“Retailing supports jobs in every city, town and village in the country and so it is critical that our retail sector is competing at the forefront of the digital revolution,” Minister Humphreys said.
“Following the interest level and volume of applications received for the first call of the scheme, I am delighted to announce the opening of the second call for applications to support Irish retailers to develop and grow their online retail presence and effectively compete with international companies,” she concluded.
Coping With Challenges
The announcement was welcomed by Retail Excellence, which noted that the funding will give Irish retailers the resources to respond to external challenges like exporting in a difficult post-Brexit environment, flat consumer confidence and increasing business costs.
“We have been vocal in calling for retailers to receive the same sort of financial backing to exploit international markets as that made available to manufacturers and to businesses in the tech sector,” said Bryan Rankin, Head of Public Affairs with Retail Excellence.
Despite showering the launch with praise, Rankin suggested that the level of State support and financial intervention ‘needs to be far more ambitious,’ adding that he will work with Minister Humphrey’s to scale it up.
“Internationalising our retail offering is important, but so is selling more into the home market. Currently, 60% of Irish online sales are on goods from overseas vendors, so we view the Irish market as a great, untapped opportunity,” he explained.
© 2019 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Aidan O’Sullivan. Click sign-up to subscribe to Checkout.