Have a business idea or an innovation? Thinking of bringing out the entrepreneur in you and starting a business to put the idea into action? Perhaps considering the support and the initiatives you get from the Irish Government and the start-up communities in the country, starting a new business in Ireland isn’t really a challenge. However, before you get a move on with the process, it’s important that you get the basics right. See if you can answer the following questions and if you can, you are good to start your business in Ireland.
Do you have it in you?
While starting a business can be tough, before stepping into it, take a reality check to see if you are ready for it. Initial stages of setting up a business aren’t going to be easy. You’d be forced to make a lot of sacrifices – both in your professional and personal life. You are the boss and the servant till you have a team working under you. Do you have the entrepreneurial skills in you to run a company?
If you require coaching, get in touch with your Local Enterprise Office (LEO). LEOs have defined courses and training programmes for start-up companies that give insights on how to take your business idea forward.
Does your business have the success factor?
First and foremost point to remember – don’t jump into your business idea without knowing whether it will succeed in the market or not. Your idea needn’t be something that will reinvent the wheel; it can be something that’s already been tried in the market and a successful one. You can try something specific (a niche or a category) in the existing business and master the art. Discuss your business idea with possibly other young start-up owners or people who you trust and believe can give you wise suggestions.
Most important, do some analysis on the revenue that your business will generate. How much you will be spending on building the actual product? Can you recover the cost involved along with profits? What will be your expenses in a month, the cash inflow vs. outflow and costs to run your business. A handy tool as this cash flow planner will help you manage your cashflows. If you can arrive at realistic numbers for these factors, you’ll have an answer to whether your business will be successful or not.
Do you have adequate funding?
Next important factor to consider is whether you have sufficient funds to start the business. Should you require assistance, State Grants should be the primary option for start-ups in Ireland. The Local Enterprise Office is the best place to reach out.
LEOs also offer financial support and advice to start your business! They will help you to understand the business opportunity and validate it against defined norms. Feasibility grant from the LEOs can earn you up to €15000 (which is 50% of the cost excluding VAT). The Innovation Voucher worth €5000 can be used with the 3rd level institution in Ireland to hire college students to build prototypes of your product. The Competitive Start Fund offers up to €50000 or a 10% equity stake in your business if your business idea can scale and attract heavy investment. This can be the perfect investment to get a prototype product or Minimum Viable Product out in the market to attract customers. Crowdfunding can also be an option to secure funding for your start-up.
How will you manage the accounts of the business?
Once you are clear of your source of funds and the business, the next immediate step is to open a bank account for your business. Never mix your business transactions with your personal accounts. This is a big mistake lot of start-up founders make in their initial stages. If accounting is something you cannot handle, get the best accountants in Ireland who will monitor your accounts, bills and invoices, and keep a watch on the cash flow. Make sure that your accountant understands your business well.
Networking – is it important?
Yes, as the founder of your business, it’s important that you become an active part of physical networking communities in your locality – be it coffee table meetup events, or major events related to your business. A Google local search will give you an idea of these events around your locality. You can also become a member of online communities on LinkedIn or Facebook or other similar chat forums. Having a discussion with successful entrepreneurs will nothing but give you loads of confidence for your business.