Platform94’s new International Scale-up Programme, launched by Minister Dara Calleary, aims to help entrepreneurs across the West and Northwest to grow their companies on a global scale
IRELAND: Leading Irish tech hub Platform94 has, today, announced the launch of its latest initiative, ‘The International Scale-up Programme’ in partnership with Enterprise Ireland. Officially unveiled by the Minister of State in the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Dara Calleary, its aim is to help increase the number of successful Irish-born companies overseas, through empowering and mentoring entrepreneurs w to grow their business in a chosen foreign market. Previously known as Galway Technology Centre, Platform94 is a fast growing focal point for entrepreneurs in the West and Northwest of the country who wish to scale their business to new heights.
Applications are currently being sought for the new pilot programme, which will run for 12 weeks, beginning in Q4, 2023. A sizable number of ambitious companies in the region are expected to participate in the comprehensive mentor-led practical curriculum, with the help of renowned scaling up coaches and experts from Trade Promotion authority, OCO Global and Platform94. The closing date for applications is Friday, October 13th.
With an emphasis on achieving international success, the programme aims to foster the potential of entrepreneurs across the West and NorthWest region, through further developing their skills, equipping them with the tools to scale their business globally, and developing their passion for growth. Through the International Scale-up Programme, participants will gain a deeper understanding of the driving forces within their industry, research growth opportunities in overseas markets, develop business leads, and attend conferences in specific foreign markets.
They will also gain exposure to experienced mentors and be provided with unique insight into how international markets operate effectively in the hopes of becoming globally recognised enterprises.
The recent Report of the SME Growth Taskforce: SME and Entrepreneurship Growth Plan, identifies how important the support of entrepreneurs and SMEs is to Ireland’s economy. It further cites that in order to expand quickly and successfully, companies require significant scale up support. Additionally, a study conducted at William Russell found that Ireland has immense potential for companies looking to go global, with experts suggesting it is the best country to start a business in, in 2023.
Platform 94’s International Scale-up Programme also includes monthly webinars, access to scale up collateral and scale up assessments. In-person mentoring sessions will be conducted at Platform94’s headquarters, with virtual meetings and coaching taking place via zoom. The programme will also include an International market visit with hands-on learning and exposure to live events, building an international network for participant companies.
Since its relaunch, Platform94 has furthered its position as a pathway for companies to refine their skills and hone their talents, for domestic and international success on a large scale. The organisation’s tagline is ‘Global ambition, Local support’ through helping West of Ireland companies maximise their potential through the organisation’s network of international contacts and supports.
Congratulating Platform94 on the launch of the new programme, Minister of State at the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Dara Calleary, said:
“I am delighted that my Department has supported the continued development of Platform94 which has gone from strength to strength over the last 28 years. The facility itself is fantastic, but it’s only one part of the solution, and programmes such as this pilot International Scale-up Programme offer a range of in depth supports that help meet the needs of our indigenous businesses.
“At present, there are almost 50 businesses on-site in Platform94, employing more than 350 people, with many currently recruiting. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the team at Platform94 for their constant support of businesses and to congratulate them for designing and scoping out this hugely important programme. Platform94 is one of nine projects approved for Regional Enterprise Development Funding in the West region, totalling more than €20m in three calls between 2017 and 2020. The overall enterprise ecosystem in the West and Northwest is well-aligned for anyone starting or growing a business and this new programme will open the door to a whole new world of opportunities. I encourage all interested businesses to apply and look forward to watching this exciting programme progress.”
Commenting on the programme, Méabh Conaghan, West Region Director for Enterprise Ireland, said:
“This management development programme, focussing on supporting companies with the ambition to scale and internationalise, is very much welcomed by Enterprise Ireland, as it will help regional businesses to develop new export opportunities. Selling into markets overseas can be daunting and challenging for SMEs and this support will help with market research, product market fit, and financial planning, culminating in a practical route to market strategy supported by Platform94 and OCO Global. This is exactly what is needed to help companies to scale and grow from the West of Ireland.”
Speaking about the launch of The International Scale-up Programme, Brian Muldoon, Platform94 Client Scaling Manager, added:
“The team at Platform94 are immensely proud to be announcing the launch of this new pilot programme with the support of Enterprise Ireland and the expertise of global trade advisory firm, OCO Global. Scaling a business is hard. It requires different skills at different stages of a company’s growth. As businesses progress, they need support around funding, talent acquisition and retention, and access to new markets. ‘Global ambition, Local support’ has always been our mantra and we hope this next phase of Platform94’s journey will demonstrate that any business with the ambition and drive to succeed internationally can do so with our assistance.”
The International Scale-up Programme is open to applicants and will close on Friday, October 13th. For more information and to apply, please visit www.platform94.ie
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Platform94 – formerly Galway Technology Centre (GTC) – is a fast growing technology hub for scaling technology companies across the West of Ireland and beyond. Innovators and specialists in supporting dynamic tech businesses, it enables companies to scale out of the region, reaching their full global potential. Platform94 provides a pathway for companies to scale by offering exclusive access to funding support, tech communities, local and global networks, office space, scaling education, and events. Established by the Digital Task Force in 1994 to encourage the development of technology-based industry in the West of Ireland, it also acts as a soft landing site for multinationals looking to establish a base in the region. It is owned by non-profits Galway Chamber and WestBIC, and has developed key partnerships with Enterprise Ireland, Local Enterprise Offices, and IDA Ireland. Platform94 is headquartered in Galway, Ireland and currently has six employees. Since its establishment, it has supported over 300 companies, facilitated 3,000 jobs, and has generated at least €1.3 bn in GVA for Ireland’s West. For more information, visit platform94.ie