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FREE resources to help you start and grow a successful business

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Search for your local area to find free business advice, networking groups, funding and local grants.

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Find help and support in your local area.

Search for your local area to find free business advice, networking groups, funding and local grants.

Search your area

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Starting a business is the easy part!

Keeping it going profitably is an entirely different matter.

Start Your Own Business is designed to help anyone running their own business or thinking of doing so. The aim is to increase your chances of success by providing a selection of FREE start-up resources and to highlight the support that is available in each area.

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Welcome from our founder.

Free Startup Resources

It is a common trait amongst entrepreneurs to just want to 'get on with it'.

However, if you want to maximise your chances of success, it is worth putting in time and effort before you start to ensure that you have set-up correctly. This collection of resources has been put together to make the process as straight-forward as possible but also to ensure that you do not miss anything important.

How to start a new business in Ireland

Start a business in Ireland

If you are thinking about starting a business in Ireland, you are not alone! At any one time, one in three people of working age are also dreaming about being their own boss.

Total Population: 5 million
Businesses in Ireland: 290,000
SME's: 270,000
New businesses (2022): 22,000
(Source: Central Statistics Office)

As you can see, the vast majority of Irish businesses are classed as SME's (small, or medium enterpries). We would love to help you join them!

To find friendly support in your local area, including business advisory organisations, business networking groups, and local loans/grants please either find your location by using the search box above.

We also have sections dedicated to each region:

Starting a business step-by-step


Starting a new business in Ireland offers numerous opportunities for entrepreneurs. With its strong economy, favorable business environment, and supportive government policies, Ireland has become an attractive destination for business ventures. This guide aims to provide you with a step-by-step process, essential considerations, relevant statistics, and organizations that can assist you in establishing your business in Ireland.

Table of Contents
  1. Introduction
  2. Economic Overview
  3. Legal and Regulatory Considerations
  4. Business Structures
  5. Taxation and Financial Considerations
  6. Funding and Support
  7. Market Research and Business Planning
  8. Company Registration
  9. Employment Regulations
  10. Intellectual Property Protection
  11. Key Organizations and Resources
Economic Overview

Before starting a business, it's essential to understand the economic landscape of Ireland. Some key statistics are as follows:

  • Ireland has a population of approximately 4.9 million people (Central Statistics Office).
  • The country boasts a highly skilled workforce, with a strong emphasis on education and innovation.
  • Ireland's economy is diverse, with key sectors including technology, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, finance, and tourism.
  • The corporate tax rate for trading income in Ireland is 12.5%, one of the lowest in Europe.
  • Ireland has a well-developed infrastructure and excellent connectivity, including world-class airports and seaports.
  • The country's membership in the European Union provides businesses with access to a large market.
Legal and Regulatory Considerations

Starting a business in Ireland requires compliance with legal and regulatory requirements. Important considerations include:

  • Registering your business name and obtaining the necessary licenses and permits.
  • Complying with employment and labor laws, including health and safety regulations.
  • Understanding intellectual property laws to protect your innovations and brand.
  • Complying with data protection and privacy regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
Business Structures

Choosing the right business structure is crucial. The common options in Ireland include:

  • Sole Trader: A single individual operating as a self-employed business owner.
  • Partnership: Two or more individuals carrying on a business together.
  • Limited Company: A separate legal entity with limited liability for shareholders.
  • Designated Activity Company (DAC): Similar to a limited company but with certain restrictions on its activities.
  • Company Limited by Guarantee: Typically used for non-profit or charitable organizations.
  • Cooperative: A business owned and controlled by its members.
Taxation and Financial Considerations

Understanding the taxation system and financial considerations is vital. Key points include:

  • Corporate tax rates, incentives, and reliefs applicable to your business.
  • Value Added Tax (VAT) registration and compliance.
  • Employer obligations, including payroll taxes and social contributions.
  • Access to funding, grants, and venture capital options.
  • Financial management, including bookkeeping and annual financial statements.
Funding and Support

Various organizations and initiatives provide funding and support for new businesses in Ireland. Some notable options are:

Market Research and Business Planning

Conducting thorough market research and creating a solid business plan are critical. Consider the following:

  • Identify your target market, competition, and potential customers.
  • Define your unique selling proposition and marketing strategies.
  • Develop a comprehensive business plan outlining your goals, financial projections, and growth strategies.
Company Registration

To legally operate your business in Ireland, you must register with the Companies Registration Office (CRO). The CRO website provides detailed information and online registration services.

Employment Regulations

If you plan to hire employees, it's crucial to understand employment regulations. Key considerations include:

  • Employment contracts, working hours, and minimum wage requirements.
  • Payroll processing, taxes, and social contributions.
  • Health and safety regulations and employee rights.
Intellectual Property Protection

Protecting your intellectual property is vital for business success. Key steps include:

  • Conducting thorough research to ensure your brand or innovation is not already registered.
  • Registering trademarks, patents, and copyrights with the Irish Patents Office.
  • Seeking legal advice to protect your intellectual property rights.
Key Organizations and Resources

Several organizations and government bodies offer valuable resources and support. Here are some important ones:


Starting a new business in Ireland can be a rewarding venture, given the country's strong economy and business-friendly environment. By following the steps outlined in this guide and utilizing the resources provided, you can navigate the process with confidence. Remember to conduct thorough research, seek professional advice when necessary, and leverage the available support from organizations that specialize in assisting businesses in Ireland. Good luck with your new business!

FREE startup workshops

If you are thinking about starting a business, our FREE three-hour ONLINE workshop is definitely for you!

Open to everyone, our sole aim is to increase your chances of success. We do that by explaining:

The reality of running a business; the most common pitfalls and how to avoid them; which legal status is likely to be most suitable; funding, grants and managing your money; business planning and cashflow forecasting; finding and keeping customers.

Start-up articles

100's of free startup articles

We have created a collection of 100s of startup articles to help anyone with whatever stage they are on with their business journey. Hundreds of thousands of people have gone before you and we can learn from what they got right and avoid the things that have been proved not to work so well.

You can see the full list of 'articles' at: How to start a business

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FREE business listing in your area.

We are delighted to promote suitable businesses and organisations completely FREE of charge. Your coverage can contain: logo, company name, brief description, special offers, telephone number and link to your website.

Latest free listings

If you can help new business start-ups in your area, we would be delighted to let them know.

One of the aims of SYOB is to raise awareness of the support that is available in each area. Not only does this mean that the new business owner is more likely to succeed, it will also benefit the local economy! Add your free listing

Latest articles

You don't know what you don't know!

The prospect of starting a new business can be incredibly exciting but should be approached with care. You have probably heard scary stories about how many start-ups fail in the early stages. You can make sure that you are not one of them by learning as much as possible before you launch. Over the years, we have collected lots of articles which will show you what has worked well for other start-ups and the putfalls to avoid.