Enterprise Ireland’s €500,000 Competitive Start Fund (CSF) to support start-up activity in the agricultural and manufacturing sectors opens for entries today, September 21.

The fund provides €50,000 in equity fundingfor each successful applicant and will close at 3pm Wednesday, October 5, 2016.

Now in its second year, the purpose of the Competitive Start Fund is to stimulate growth for start-up companies working in areas of agriculture and manufacturing that have the capability to succeed in global markets.

One of last year’s winners Emer Ni Chuanigh is the Managing Director of Hydrasure who is a provider of drinker solutions for the equine industry.

Ni Chuanigh noticed a need in the market that was not being filled and started working on a drinker which measures how much water horse’s drink, then records that information, and finally sends alerts through to an internet connection to your device.

On looking to set up your business, Ni Chuanigh stresses the point that it’s unwise to think it’s going to be plain sailing for any entrepreneur and outlined below some of the challenges she has faced.

“To get my first prototypes developed in the initial stages, I had to prove the worth of my idea many times for funding applications, and I got a number of knock-backs.

“This can be discouraging when you’re putting your own money into something and taking financial risks with no guarantee of return.”

She will be the first to say that funding is the lifeblood for any start up and here are five tips Ni Chuanigh suggests for being a successful applicant to this year’s CSF.

Source: Enterprise Ireland’s €500,000 agricultural fund opens for applications – Agriland