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Lack of finance the biggest barrier to starting new businesses in Ireland, say entrepreneurs

Over one-in-two entrepreneurs surveyed believe the lack of finance options for start-ups was stifling the growth of new businesses.

A SURVEY OF 350 leading Irish entrepreneurs have said that the lack of finance is the biggest obstacle that entrepreneurs come up against when starting a new business.

The EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Entrepreneurship Barometer found that 59 per cent noted a lack of finance as the biggest barrier to starting a new business in Ireland with 41 per cent stating that access to finance should be the foremost imperative for government action.


Over 74 per cent said they believed that Ireland doesn’t provide sufficient support for struggling or failed entrepreneurs, while 41 per cent said that the access to talent also presented a key challenge to those looking to set up business in Ireland.

Attracting experienced hire was an issue for 38 per cent who cited it as a specific, while an additional 24.4 per cent noted difficulties in sourcing both experienced hire and skilled graduates.

The survey found that while multinationals were seen as direct competitors in the race to hire the best talent, a skills shortage, with a particular emphasis on the need to increase the pipeline of graduates with engineering, sales and programming skills, is an issue.

There has also been a call for the government to create an infrastructure for shared resources, guidance and supports to get struggling entrepreneurial businesses back on track.

Partner-in-Charge of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Frank O’Keeffe said it is vital for government, industry and academia to understand the specific challenges facing entrepreneurs and there should be collaboration to solve problems.

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He added that government should address legislative and cultural barriers to success, stating together we can “shape the future of entrepreneurship in Ireland”.

O’Keeffe added:

The entrepreneurs who fed insights into our Entrepreneurship Barometer represent 28 of the island of Ireland’s 32 counties.

Together, they employ 152,250 individuals; generating revenues of €16.6 billion and creating 13,650 new jobs in just 2013 alone.

This is a community who should be supported and celebrated as having the power to bring our country back to economic stability.

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