‘Running a business can be a lonely place’

County Hall will shortly be the headquarters of the Laois Enterprise Office.

County Hall will shortly be the headquarters of the Laois Enterprise Office.

Head of the new Laois Enterprise Office, Evelyn Reddin, has outlined new supports for small businesses.

Among the ideas for LEO Laois, which replaces the County Enterprise Board, are new business networks and a weekly outreach office offering advice and support.

“Running a business can be a lonely or isolated place, which is why we are considering network groups,” said Ms Reddin.

“We recognise that for women in particular, trying to start or run a business, they can experience different problems, so we are running the second of our Enterprising Women programmes this year in November,” she said, speaking at Laois County Council’s July meeting.

LEO Laois are to shortly move from the enterprise centre into county hall, to offer a “first stop shop”.

“This is a new opportunity for local government to embrace local enterprise, and promote enterpreneurship right across Laois,” she said.

So far this year over €200,000 has been granted to Laois businesses, half in ‘priming grants‘ for those trading less than 18 months, creating 14 jobs, and half in business expansion grants for 11 new jobs. €2,028 was given for feasibility studies.

They also offer mentors, business training courses, and vouchers (worth up to €2,500 or 50% of cost) to develop an online presence.

Enterprise promotion workshops in primary and secondary schools will start in September.

Call 8661800, email localenterprise@laoiscoco.ie or see www.localenterprise.ie/laois




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