Saturday, 22nd September 2018
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Waterford In addition, 973 people took part in 105 LEO-run training programmes last year and 230 entrepreneurs and business owners availed of mentoring support locally.

A further 31 business projects received direct financial assistance from LEO Waterford, such as business priming, micro exporters’ grants and expansion grants.

Nationally, the results from the Annual Employment Survey, compiled by Enterprise Ireland, show that there are now 37,485 people employed by 7,182 small businesses and start-ups that have received support from the Local Enterprise Offices.

The 31 LEOs nationwide, run in partnership by Enterprise Ireland and the Local Authorities, provide a ‘first stop shop’ for the supports available to entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses.

Minister Humphreys said: "Local Enterprise Offices helped many thousands of people last year to start-up or grow their own businesses by delivering a suite of financial, training and information supports across every county and region, resulting in the creation of 7,135 jobs right across the country. This Government has a clear focus on regional jobs and investment, and the LEOs play a crucial role in this effort, particularly through the Regional Actions Plans for Jobs. I am delighted that the job results for 2017 are so strong, and look forward to further collaboration with the LEOs in 2018."

Richie Walsh Head of Enterprise at Waterford Local Enterprise Office said: "We are delighted to assist with the continuing trend of job creation and business growth here in Waterford. We helped more than 2,000 people last year alone through training and mentoring and provided microfinance loans and direct financial assistance to the tune of €559,000. It is our goal to assist even more business people and their businesses in Waterford during 2018 and we would encourage all would be entrepreneurs and existing businesses to come and have a chat with any of our team to see how we can be of help so we can all continue to drive business even further in Waterford."

Brendan Flood, Divisional Manager, Regions and Entrepreneurship, Enterprise Ireland said; "As these figures show, LEOs are helping an increasing number of businesses with global ambition to scale up and grow internationally through a range of new supports and programmes. Enterprise

Ireland will continue to work closely with the LEOs and our Local Authority partners to achieve balanced growth throughout every region and to help more small businesses prepare for Brexit."

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