Information, Advice and Support for Businesses

Overview

There is a lot of information and advice availabe for businesses coming out daily from various agencies. We’ve attemped to collate the priority information here. If you have any other information or links you think we should add please email us on leah@BandSChamber.com.

This section includes

  • Recent News
  • Sources of information, advice and support for businesses
  • Tips on getting your business online

 

Recent News

Donegal Local Enterprise Office – News  20/03/2020.  
For full information click here.

In summary:
 
  • Local Enterprise Office Donegal is making free online/telephone mentoring available to any business seeking assistance in addressing these issues  (see below) and in developing their cash flow projections and in developing a short action plan to address the identified actions.  
  • Businesses which are seeking support to assist with business continuity and preparedness connected to the COVID-19 outbreak, including resulting HR issues, may be provided with a Business Continuity Voucher subject to certain conditions and criteria. This voucher will cover the costs for consultancy/mentors in areas such as finance, HR etc to a maximum of €2,500 and at no cost to the client. We are currently awaiting the full details of this support which are to be finalised shortly. 
  • The maximum loan available from MicroFinance Ireland has be increased from €25,000 to €50,000 as an immediate measure to specifically deal with the impacts of COVID – 19 on micro-enterprises (sole traders and firms with up to 9 employees).  (subject to conditions)
  • The COVID–19 Working Capital Loan which is currently being finalised by SBCI and will be available by the end of next week.  This is for eligible businesses impacted by COVID-19. Loans of up to €1.5m will be available at reduced rates, with up to the first €500,000 unsecured.   

 

Sources of information, advice and support for businesses

DBEI is now operating a Business Support Call Centre to advise on the Government supports available to businesses and enterprises that are affected by COVID-19. The Call Centre can be contacted at 00 353 1 631 2002.   

 

Information Source/ Website
(click on name to link to page)
What's there
Local Enterprise OfficeBusiness Continuity Planning Checklist
Enterprise Ireland Business Response - Covid 19Details of supports available from Government and Enterprise Ireland in particular
Peninsula Business GroupStaff Policy and letter, Workplace Checklist, Advice List and Q&A
HSPC - General AdviceIrish Health Protection Surveillance Centre - General Advice
HSPC - Employer and Business AdviceHSPC – Advice for business Sector
Gov.ieGovernment Supports to Covid 19 impacted businesses
www.Gov.iePublication - People who are temporarily laid off or are on short-term working
Department of Social ProtectionThe Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection are introducing measures to provide income support to people affected by COVID-19 (Coronavirus). 3 major changes have been announced:
-         the current 6-day waiting period for Illness Benefit will not apply to anyone who has COVID-19 (Coronavirus) or is in medically-required self-isolation
-         the personal rate of Illness Benefit will increase from €203 per week to €305 per week for a maximum of 2 weeks medically-required self-isolation or for the full duration of absence from work following a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
-         the normal social insurance requirements for Illness Benefit will be changed .
Gov.ieShort Term Work Support including forms and information booklets
www.gov.ieDetails of Employer Covid Refund Scheme
Department of Social ProtectionInformation for Employees, including the application form for the new Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Benefit
- This new payment will be available to all employees and the self-employed who have lost employment due to a downturn in economic activity caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
-An application form for the new Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment can be downloaded from the Department of Social Protection website www.gov.ie/jobseekers and returned to to PO BOX 12896 Dublin
OR
Phone the Department on 1890 800 024 or 01 2481398 and they will send you the relevant application form for the new payment.
Department of Social ProtectionThis second link includes information for the self-employed
www.MyWelfare.ieYou can apply for an other income support from through the online portal www.MyWelfare.ie (you will need a Public Services Card)
Banks and other financial institutionsThe majority of banks are advising their customers to get in contact as needed. Support will be assessed and provided on an individual business level
Ulster BankUlster Bank has announced a €500m Working Capital Support fund for SMEs across Ireland. Includes:
·        €500m of Working Capital Support focused on meeting the needs of SMEs.
·        Temporary emergency loans with no arrangement fees.
·        Capital Repayment Holiday on variable rate lending or a realignment of payments for customers who are seeing short term liquidity pressures.
·        Short term overdrafts or an increase/ extension of existing overdraft facilities.
Bank of IrelandSupports for customers impacted by COVID-19 include
·        emergency working capital
·        payment flexibility on loan facilities
·        provision of trade finance and foreign currency products
·        prioritisation of loan decisions
·        contact your Business Relationship Manager or call 0818 200 348
AIBWe have a suite of cashflow products that can be tailored to suit your individual circumstances,
o   Business Credit Line
o   Promptpay
·        You can now apply, sign and get your funds online for Business Loans and Overdrafts from €2,000 to €60,000
·        A Short term loan may be used to replenish spend from cashflow
·        We have a range of Trade Finance facilities to support you to manage international trade
·        There are Government supports that AIB can facilitate such as the Credit Guarantee Scheme
Microfinance IrelandCOVID 19 Business Loans
The COVID-19 Business Loan from Microfinance Ireland is a government initiative to support small businesses through the current period of uncertainty and protect job creation or sustainment in Ireland.
Strategic Banking Corporation of IrelandCredit Guarantee Scheme
The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation announced a number of supports for businesses facing challenges being presented by the current Covid-19 situation. The Credit Guarantee Scheme is in place and available now to SMEs subject to the relevant terms and conditions.
Strategic Banking Corporation of IrelandCapital Scheme
Separately the SBCI is currently working to finalise the terms and conditions of the SBCI COVID19 Working Capital Scheme and the eligibility application process for this. The SBCI website will be updated as soon as these are finalised. In the interim if you wish to be kept informed on developments please email the SBCI at info@sbci.gov.ie
Revenue.ieAdvice from Revenue to engage early with Revenue regarding Tax Payment problems
Revenue.ieRevenue has outlined some key advice and actions taken to assist small and medium enterprises businesses experiencing cashflow and trading difficulties arising from the impacts of the virus.
Donegal County Council Covid 19 Business Advice
Data Protection Commisioner - Remote WorkingA guide to Data Protection while supporting Remote Working in your business
Donegal County Council - RatesIf you have concerns about paying your Business Rates contact Donegal County Council asap. Full information regarding business rates are here

 

Tips on getting your business online

  • We approached Larua Gallagher of @Laura Gallagher – BeOnline.ie for help and she has generously offered to give free advice to anyone considering their options. This is an amazing and lovely offer from a genuine business expert in online shopping. Laura is not looking to win business here – she just wants to help.  We’ve attached a video from Laura with more details.Text Laura on 087 122 6492 with your name and business name, and she will set up the appointment with you.
  • Giftupapp.com is an online  Gift Voucher forum which you might find handy.  It’s free to sign up to and you only pay a small processing fee.  https://www.giftupapp.com/    Thank you to Paddy from The Hatter for the recommendation.
CONTACT INFORMATION
BASICC / Ballybofey and Stranorlar Chamber of Commerce
Railway Rd
Stranorlar
Co Donegal
Telephone
074 91 90909