Innovation Voucher Grant Scheme for Small Business with RIKON at WIT
Are you at a crossroads in your business? Looking to conduct in-depth exploration of an opportunity or challenge that you face? The 𝗜𝗻𝗻𝗼𝘃𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝗩𝗼𝘂𝗰𝗵𝗲𝗿 𝗦𝗰𝗵𝗲𝗺𝗲 𝗙𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝗘𝗻𝘁𝗲𝗿𝗽𝗿𝗶𝘀𝗲 𝗜𝗿𝗲𝗹𝗮𝗻𝗱 is one solution that’s available for you.
The Innovation Voucher grant scheme allows a registered knowledge provider to work alongside your business in researching your situation and then building your strategy going forward based on its findings.
RIKON at WIT is a research and strategy organisation based at Arc Labs in Waterford Institute of Technology (W.I.T) that specialises in delivering Innovation Vouchers to small and medium sized enterprises throughout Ireland.
Enterprise Ireland Vouchers, worth €5,000 are an excellent way for companies to explore a business opportunity or problem using the research expertise of experienced RIKON consultants (knowledge providers). Some of the services that can be explored using the Innovation Vouchers include:
The Innovation Voucher initiative is open to all small and medium-sized limited companies registered in Ireland. This means a company with less than 250 full-time employees and either an annual turnover of less than €50 million or an annual balance sheet of less than €43 million. The Innovation Voucher scheme is best suited for companies that are VAT registered.
Sign up now by logging onto our website at https://www.rikon.ie/innovation-vouchers/ or to discuss call us today on 051-834032
Case Study 1 of Former Innovation Voucher Users:
Case Study 2:
Case Study 3:
Date: Thursday, 15 July 2021
Time: 11am – 12pm
Join us as Chambers Ireland launches its Toolkit for Business on the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
This practical guide is for businesses of all sizes across Ireland who wish to begin incorporating the Goals into their company or are looking for inspiration on how to expand on their engagement with the SDGs.
During the webinar we will hear from industry experts who will share tips on different ways to align your business with the SDGs and encourage your staff to follow suit.
On the 8th January, 2021 Tipperary County Council (Clonmel Borough District) proposed to make bye-laws under the powers conferred on it by Section 6 of the Casual Trading Act 1995. It is now necessary to re-advertise the proposed bye-laws to incorporate substantial changes to the number and location of the pitches in the original review documents.
Following a review, draft Clonmel Borough District Casual Trading Act 1995, Bye-Laws 2021 have been prepared for the control and designation of casual trading in the administrative area of Clonmel Borough District.
Notice is hereby given that in accordance with Section 6 of the Casual Trading Act 1995, a copy of these draft Bye-Laws is available for inspection between the hours of 9.30 a.m. and 4.30 p.m. Monday to Friday, at Civic Offices, Emmet Street, Clonmel from Monday 12th July, 2021 to Thursday 12th August, 2021 (both days inclusive) and on the Council’s website https://www.tipperarycoco.ie/news/clonmel-borough-district-casual-trading-act-1995-bye-laws-2021-0
Submissions in relation to the draft Bye-Laws may be made in writing to the District Administrator, Clonmel Borough District, Civic Offices, Clonmel, Co Tipperary or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org not later than 4.30pm on Friday 27th August, 2021. Submissions received will be taken into consideration before the making of the Bye-Laws by Clonmel Borough District.
For many businesses, the first half of 2021 has been about dealing with the impacts of Covid-19 on their business (positive and negative). However, the first half of 2021 has also brought about the new trading reality or any company that is selling/sending goods to or buying/receiving goods from Great Britain.
The New Trading Reality has brought a number of challenges for business, even for those that have previously imported/exported outside of the European Union prior to 01 January 2021.
For many businesses this is the first time they have had to deal with customs. Either way, the New Trading Reality has brought a number of challenges, frustrations, but also opportunities.
Many have tried to work their way through the impacts of Brexit on the flow of goods by ensuring their products can get across the Irish Sea as quickly as possible. This has involved handing out their EORI number
whenever it is requested by a logistics company/supplier, signing numerous representation forms for clearance agents, paying couriers for import charges when their goods arrive at the door, everything they can do to get their products from A to B as quickly as possible.
However, businesses have been doing this in many cases without really understanding why they are doing it, what the consequences are for their business and the missed opportunities that are passing them by (or the risks they are creating for their business).
What is Customs
The first fundamental point all businesses need to understand is that submitting a customs declaration under their EORI number is not merely a tick the box exercise for moving products. Customs in its simplest form is a tax, the customs declaration is the tax return, and when a customs declaration is submitted under your EORI number you are the responsible party for that tax return.
Most businesses would not outsource their PAYE returns or Corporation Tax returns to a third party they didn’t know. Following this same logic, we do not advise that you do this with your customs declarations either.
“My Broker is responsible for customs”
We often hear companies tell us their customs brokers are handling their customs obligations. But it is important to understand that just because you have a third party customs broker submitting your customs declarations does not mean your business is absolved of the responsibilities and obligations attached to that declaration.
A customs clearance agents role is to submit the return. It is the responsibility of the importer/exporter to provide clear instruction to their broker about how these returns should be submitted (e.g. what tariff classification code to use, any particular customs valuation information that should be indicated on the
declaration, how taxes should be paid). Many times a broker will make calls on behalf of the importer/exporter to facilitate the flow of goods across the border however ultimately it is the importer/exporter that will be held responsible for what has been submitted.
“My supplier handles the imports”
Many companies have been informed by their suppliers in Great Britain that they are set up to deal with customs in Ireland and will handle all the import taxes. If your supplier (or their logistics provider) requests
your EORI number for shipments to Ireland, or request that you sign a form to expedite customs clearance then, while they may be paying the customs charges, there is a high risk they are listing you as the importer and you will be the responsible party for that import. You need to be in control of your import profile to ensure nothing is being declared incorrectly on your behalf.
“I haven’t seen any tax costs”
Again, another phrase we hear many times is that there has been no tax costs incurred by a business importing from the UK. But rarely have companies dug into why they may not have been charged import taxes. Were your products imported under the terms of the EU-UK Free Trade Agreement? Was the VAT postponed? Was the correct tariff classification code used? These are all questions that should be asked by importers and needed to answered to ensure you are on top of your compliance obligations.
“Customs is a dead cost”
Customs duties when incurred at import are generally not recoverable. That does not mean that there are not mechanisms available for companies to efficiently manage these costs. This goes back to the point above, that
customs in its simplest form is a tax. Like any other tax, there are mechanisms that can be utilized to efficiently manage these taxes. However, if your business takes an approach of outsourcing everything to your clearance agents and you don’t engage in planning activities you will miss out on these planning opportunities (like you would with any other tax).
What to do six months in
At this stage, the reality of the costs of customs will begin to appear on many businesses financial statements.
If you are seeing these costs come through there are a number of steps you should take. Equally, if you are not seeing any costs come through and you are importing from/exporting to Great Britain there are a number of
steps you need to take to ensure you don’t have a financial risk following your business (customs declarations can be audited for a period of three years after the date of import).
At this point in time there is an opportunity for business to take what has happened over the past six months and review:
- What has worked well
- What has created an additional administrative burden on the business
- What additional costs have been incurred
- What has been declared on your behalf
By doing the above, you can reflect, learn and plan for the future to ensure you are in compliance with your obligations as an importer/exporter and identify any opportunities that can create a competitive advantage for your business.
There are a number of supports still available to assist businesses deal with the impacts of Brexit (such as the InterTradeIreland Brexit planning voucher). Across Borders Consulting is an approved InterTradeIreland Brexit service provider.
If you have any questions on customs or international trade, drop us an email and we would be happy to discuss how we can support. Our team has a specific and deep practical and legal understanding of customs, international trade and supply chain management with our staff composed of former Customs Officers,
Directors of Customs and Trade teams for large US multinationals and former Directors/Managers from Big Four accounting firms (PwC & EY).
County Tipperary Chamber and Grant Thornton Ireland has today announced the launch of the first Irish Business Voice programme.
The Grant Thornton Business Voice Programme was established to support Irish businesses in key areas following the unprecedented and rapid change of landscape over the past year. County Tipperary Chamber have teamed up with Grant Thornton Ireland to unearth the pertinent issues, concerns, hurdles and needs of Irish businesses to return to an era of sustained growth. To support the reinvigoration of rural and regional Ireland the aim of the program is to address these issues in order to arm businesses with the right tools and advice to move to the next stage of their success, whatever that may be. Following the analysis of the data, County Tipperary Chamber in conjunction with Grant Thornton will reach out to Tipperary businesses with proactive and actionable advice, in the form or publications, webinars and workshops.
Speaking at the launch, Michelle Aylward, CEO of County Tipperary Chamber said, “We are delighted to be partnering with Grant Thornton on the Irish Business Voice programme. Embracing remote working along with considerable advancements with digital transformation are on every business agenda. Our members look forward to working closely with Grant Thornton and accessing their expertise with the planned workshops and webinars later this year. The survey will enable County Tipperary Chamber and Grant Thornton to deliver a suite of learning programmes that will assist SME’s as they navigate their way through Covid 19, Brexit and a rapidly changing business landscape”.
Grant Thornton Ireland Managing Partner Michael McAteer said ‘Grant Thornton Ireland understands the vital role Irish businesses play in the Irish economy and the importance of the reinvigoration of regional Ireland. One lasting effect of the pandemic will be the shift we have seen in how we work, and how we have embraced remote working. A shift that has started and that will continue to see the move of people from cities to regional locations. The new dynamic of how we work and operate should bring with it a rejuvenation of Irish regional businesses and we want to ensure that they have the tools and advice necessary to navigate any challenges, leverage new opportunities and to return to an era of success and growth.’
Businesses will be asked to complete the survey during the months of June and July, with a series of events planned for later in the summer months and into the autumn.
As the impact of the vaccine rollout continues to show promise, County Tipperary Chamber calls on Irish businesses to be flexible in facilitating employees to receive their vaccine. County Tipperary Chamber CEO Michelle Aylward said, “As the National Vaccination Programme moves to vaccinate people in their 40s and younger, businesses in Ireland can show continued leadership by communicating their encouragement to staff and supporting them to receive their vaccine at the earliest opportunity. Employers have demonstrated excellent commitment in their support of public health measures and have an important role to play in the months ahead. Vaccination is our only viable route out of the pandemic and we must act decisively to ensure it continues at pace. By clearly communicating to staff that you support their vaccination and will be flexible in allowing them to take time off during working hours, you can reduce hesitancy and help society and the economy return to normal faster. A safe return to the workplace and stable economic growth will only happen when there is a high level of protection among the population.” “As is now clear to us all, the extent of community stretches far beyond our borders in a pandemic. Ireland’s vaccination effort is only one part of a much greater whole, and more support must be given to global vaccination efforts. If a global approach to ending the pandemic is not prioritised, the risk of a faltering recovery will increase. This has the potential to lead to entrenched loss of life and disruption to economies and supply chains for years to come. Peter Power, Executive Director of UNICEF Ireland said, “No one is safe until we are all safe. COVID-19 spikes occurring around the world and the emergence of variants threaten us all. That’s why UNICEF has taken on to procure and supply 2 billion vaccines to vulnerable populations worldwide. “It’s a mammoth task, but we are confident we can achieve it – with the help of the Irish public. We’ve launched the Get a Vaccine Give a Vaccine campaign to give every adult an opportunity to come together in support of global vaccine equity – taking part is an act of solidarity. Visit unicef.ie to join the historic movement to end COVID-19.” Michelle Aylward CEO
Today, Michelle Aylward, CEO of the County Tipperary Chamber of Commerce has announced an extension of two weeks to the deadline of the Tipperary Business Awards.
Online applications will be accepted at www.countytipperarychamber.com until Friday, 18th of June. The extension is a public acknowledgement of all the hard work that so many Tipperary businesses have been putting in over recent weeks to get their businesses reopened in line with public health guidelines.
Speaking on behalf of the County Tipperary Chamber of Commerce, CEO, Michelle Aylward said “We felt that with so many businesses simply too busy preparing to reopen in recent weeks, it was only fair to extend the deadline.
We have had an amazing reaction to the awards this year with a record number of applications received however, some categories which traditionally are the first to fill like Best in Retail and Best in Food, Beverage and Hospitality were notably slower than normal, a sure sign that the focus of such businesses was on reopening.
We conducted some research and the result was that if businesses had more time to get open and properly up and running, they would be in a better position to enter the awards.
There was a very strong appetite for an extension so we are pushing out the deadline for applications by a further two weeks to Friday, June 18th and wish all those who have and those who are about to reopen the very best of luck with it.”
The Chamber also took the opportunity to encourage not just those reopening to apply but any Tipperary based business to submit an application online with Aylward commenting “There are thirteen categories you can enter and it will take about ten minutes to apply online via our website www.countytipperarychamber.com. It is completely free to enter so that ten minutes you set aside to apply could be the best decision you make for your business all year!”
In addition to these, there are thirteen unique sponsors on board to recognise excellence in their awards category and these include; Best Employer sponsored by County Tipperary Skillnet, Best in Corporate Social Responsibility Awards sponsored by Infosys Ireland, Best in Sustainability sponsored by MSD Ireland, Best in Retail sponsored by Showgrounds Shopping Centre, Best in Micro Business sponsored by Medite, Best Not for Profit sponsored by Abbott Ireland, S.M.E of the Year Award sponsored by A.I.B., Best Start-Up or New Emerging Business sponsored by Local Enterprise Office Tipperary, Best in Tourism, Sports, Art and Culture sponsored by C&C Group, Best in Marketing Excellence sponsored by O’Gorman, Brannigan, Purtill & Co., Best in Food, Beverage and Hospitality sponsored by ABP Food Group, Best in Technology and Innovation sponsored by Sepam and Best Large Business sponsored by Camida while the Wrap Party is sponsored by Red PR & Communications.
Chamber News & Events
Read some of our past events and posts,