With the trend ever increasing towards online spending it is estimated that only 23% of small Irish businesses are engaged in any meaningful way in eCommerce sales. For businesses employing less than ten people this percentage could be even lower. It is now believed that, of online purchases made in Ireland, up to 70% of these are done in overseas markets.
There is now an urgency to ensure that businesses recognise that this is happening and that they are encouraged and supported to correctly respond to this digital reality.
In order to support this goal, the National Digital Strategy aims to get more businesses trading online. To this end, the Department of Communications, Climate Action & Environment (DCCAE) launched a Trading Online Voucher Scheme and teamed up with the Local Enterprise Offices (LEO) to deliver this to Irish business. A limited number of vouchers are now available to eligible businesses.
PLEASE NOTE: The Local Enterprise Office is not responsible for any disputes between the applicant and 3rd party suppliers. Therefore we recommend that you adhere to best business practice and get three quotes as well as carry out due diligence before selecting a supplier.
Disclaimer – For the avoidance of doubt it is understood and accepted that it is the applicant companies who are selecting and entering into a contract with third parties. The State and its agents (including Local Enterprise Office(s), Enterprise Ireland or any Government Department) does not accept any liability whatsoever in respect of any deficit in or consequences arising from products or services procured by or provided to companies under this scheme. In submitting your application under this scheme you are confirming that you understand and accept this disclaimer.
Important: When completing the form please do not exceed 150 words or the space allowed in the boxes. If you require additional space, please write ‘continued...’ and use a blank page to complete the remaining text, starting with the name of the section you are completing, e.g. ‘1. Description of your Business Products/Services’ AND attach any additional pages to the form.
What are the eligibility criteria?
The vouchers are targeted at businesses with the following profile:
· Limited or no e-commerce presence;
· 10 or less employees;
· Turnover less than €2m;
· Applicant business must be trading for at least 6 months;
· Business must be located in the area covered by the LEO to whom they make their application i.e. LEOs cannot accept applications from businesses located outside their jurisdiction.
Previous voucher recipients may apply for a
*applicant business must provide clear proof of trading for a minimum of 6 months to their Local Enterprise Office.
What are ineligible projects for this scheme?
· Companies with charitable status, commercial semi-state companies, trade associations and company representation bodies such as Chambers of Commerce are not eligible to participate in the scheme;
· “Not for profit” and social entrepreneurship applicants unless they operate in a commercial domain;
· Professional services specialising in IT type services who are already capable of trading online using existing in-house systems;
· Conferences and Seminars;
· Projects which are contrary to public policy;
· Duplication of support for projects which would be eligible for assistance from other State Agencies of EU funded Operational Programmes;
· Projects with employees in excess of 10 people;
· Projects deemed to be capable of proceeding in any event without scheme assistance i.e. deadweight;
· Projects essentially comprising importation and distribution.