Tuesday, 17 December 2019

Questions (309)

Robert Troy

Question:

309. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation the funding allocated to the Supporting SMEs online tool in each year since established, in tabular form; the number of SMEs by size (details supplied) that used the tool in each year since established and to date in 2019; and the percentage breakdown per firm size. [53286/19]

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Written answers (Question to Business)

The SME Online Tool (as it was then called) was originally established in 2015, and was initially hosted on the Local Enterprise Office website with technical support provided by Enterprise Ireland.

The SME Communications Group is responsible for its operation and was initially led by the Department of the Taoiseach, then was subsequently led by the Department of Finance. The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation took over the leadership of the online tool and the SME Communications Group in mid-2018.

The SME Communications Group has met on three occasions to date throughout 2019 and continues to promote the online tool, for example through engagement with SMEs and stakeholders at promotional events such as the Taking Care of Business and the National Ploughing Championships, and through promotional activities such as on LinkedIn, the business-focused social network site.

The Supportingsmes.gov.ie website is currently hosted by the same website provider as the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation website. Therefore, there are no additional specific hosting costs for the provision of the online tool.

Other funding allocated to the online tool by my Department, since taking over responsibility for the site, are shown below. 

DBEI Funding 2019

Cost

Online Tool Upgrade

€9,420.50

Upgrade associated Training

€738.00

Total

€10,158.50

Year

User Number – Google Analytics

2015

5,491

2016

32,572

2017

22,640

2018

20,192

2019

17,510