Taking Care of Business moves to Cork with over 250 attending free one-stop-shop event for small businesses

Nearly 250 small business owners and managers today (Tuesday) attended a one-stop-shop event for SMEs, ‘Taking Care of Business’, in the Silver Springs Hotel, Cork.

Organised by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, this event aims to provide people thinking of starting a business and existing entrepreneurs with the information they need from across the public sector.

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The ‘Taking Care of Business’ event brings together more than 25 State bodies in two strands with presentations in one area and information stands in a separate area. The information stands were manned throughout the event and presentations were made by 18 State organisations.

Opening the event Minister for Research and Innovation, Seán Sherlock TD, said: “This Government is committed to growing our indigenous sector and the ‘Taking Care of Business’ events provides all our State bodies the opportunity to come together in one location to inform and advise on the vast array of information and supports they have available.

“This is the fourth of such events and I am delighted that over 1,150 attendees have taken the opportunity to seek advice and assistance to help them start or grow their business and create the jobs this economy so badly needs”.

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 & 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.

The presentation sessions during the day were chaired by prominent people in the Cork and National business community:

· Bobby Kerr – Entrepreneur and businessman. Presenter of Newstalks ‘Down to Business’ and founding ‘Dragon’ on RTE’s Dragons’ Den.

· James O’Sullivan – Managing Director of M&P O’Sullivan Ltd. Director of Cork Business Association and member of High Level Group on Business Regulation.

· Professor Irene Lynch- Fannon – College of Business and Law, UCC and former member of the High Level Group on Business Regulation.

Today’s event builds on a pilot event in October 2013 in Dublin Castle, which was attended by 500 people. The feedback from the pilot was overwhelmingly positive, with 89% of attendees surveyed finding the format worked well and 80% agreeing that their business would benefit from having attended. The 2014 events are expanding on the number of State bodies at the pilot and bringing ‘Taking Care of Business’ outside Dublin, the most frequent suggestion for future events.

Another ‘Taking Care of Business’ event will take place in Dublin Castle on October 16th to register for this event and for more details including the running order of presentations and the full list of State bodies attending, please visit takingcareofbusiness.ie