Around 200 small business owners and managers attended a one-stop-shop event for SMEs, Taking Care of Business, held in the Radisson Blu Hotel, Galway, on Tuesday.
Organised by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, this event aimed to provide people thinking of starting a business and existing entrepreneurs with the information they need from across the public sector.
The Taking Care of Business event brought together more than 25 State bodies in two strands with presentations in one area and information stands in another. The information stands were manned throughout the event and presentations were made by 18 State organisations.
Opening the event Ciaran Cannon, the Minister for Training and Skills, said: “The Taking Care of Business event provides entrepreneurs and SMEs with a unique opportunity to access a broad range of information and talk directly to staff from more than 25 State bodies and get answers to questions that can help them in their business.
“Growing our indigenous sector and creating jobs for this economy is a major priority for this Government. A key element of this is ensuring that we communicate with our entrepreneurs and SMEs on the supports and assistance that are available to them. and I believe the Taking Care of Business event is a unique example of how we can achieve this.”
The State bodies represented deal with a wide range of areas, including: Access to finance for SMEs; assistance and supports from enterprise agencies and local authorities; tax, employment and health and safety obligations; legal requirements for setting up and running a business; requirements in areas such as food and environmental safety; advice on Government procurement and intellectual property.
Closing the event Minister John Perry, said: “As Minister for Small Business I see good communication as a key part of the agenda to reduce red tape for business. One of the things we find causes people the most headaches is lack of clarity about what they’re supposed to do, who they need to talk to and where to get the right information. My Department and all of the State bodies here today are committed to proactively engaging with businesses to tackle this information gap, by making sure that SMEs and entrepreneurs can find the information they need from multiple sources in one place.
“Taking Care of Business shows what can be achieved by working together, across boundaries and is part of this Government’s wider effort to communicate better with business. The Taking Care of Business roadshow follows on from the launch of businessregulation.ie, a web portal that my Department launched in 2012, which provides information from over 30 State bodies in one place.”
The event was organised in close co-operation with local agencies including the Galway City and County Councils. A number of representative bodies from industry supporting the event were available to talk to attendees, including Galway Chamber of Commerce. For more information log on to www.takingcareofbusiness.ie