Local Enterprise Offices will support SME's & Start ups
Access to alternative finance is still critical for SMEs in Ireland
06 February 2014
The establishment of Local Enterprise Office’s (LEOs) across Ireland is good news for start-ups and SME’s but access to finance remains critical, according to Ronan Horgan, Managing Director of Bibby Financial Services Ireland (BFSI).
Commenting on the announcement today by the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton, TD, as part of Government’s Action Plan for Jobs, on the establishment of 31 new LEO’s across Ireland, Mr Horgan said:
‘SME’s are the back bone of the Irish economy and directly employ 70% of all Irish workers. They are the sector which can most influence economic recovery and growth in Ireland. However, access to finance is key to their survival and expansion. With a continuing squeeze on the availability of credit, it is vital that SME’s are better informed of the availability of alternative funding sources, outside of the main street banks.
‘There are numerous options for SME’s seeking funding to grow their business such as the Government’s micro-finance scheme or funding based on invoice finance such as that offered by BFSI. However, the feedback we have been getting from SMEs is that often they are not aware of these options.
‘To ensure that viable businesses are positioned for growth all stakeholders have to do more to spread the message that ‘thinking outside the bank’ and looking to other funding sources can be a credible alternative’, concluded Mr Horgan.
BFSI, who recently launched a €60 million fund for Irish SMEs, is a leading independent provider of invoice finance. BFSI is part of the Bibby Line Group which provides €1billion funding to over 7,000 SMEs across 47 international offices in 15 countries.