A net total of 3,700 new jobs were delivered in 2017 by start-ups and small businesses from across the country that have been supported by the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs).
This brings the total number of new jobs created by LEO-backed companies to 15,000 since the LEOs were set up in 2014.
The jobs results by the LEOs were welcomed by the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys and the Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen, as they opened the annual LEO Forum in Athlone today.
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.
Commenting on the 2017 LEO results, Minister Humphreys said:
“Creating more and better jobs in regional and rural Ireland is a priority for the Government. As the Government rolls out its plans for balanced economic development over the next ten years, I believe the LEOs will have a major role in supporting entrepreneurs to start and stay locally”.
Minister Breen also welcomed the jobs figures, saying:
“In a challenging environment LEO clients have contributed substantially to economic development up and down the country, especially outside of the main urban centres. I would encourage the Local Authorities and Enterprise Ireland to maximize the job creation potential that exists at local level”.
The forum also highlighted the need for LEO companies to prepare for the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which becomes law in May 2018.
Minster Breen said:
“There is a range of information available to assist LEO companies in complying with their GDPR obligations. As a first step, I would encourage them to visit GDPRandyou.ie which is an excellent source of guidance provided by the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner. Don’t leave it until the last minute, now is the time to think about data protection measures.”