Small businesses in Cork should apply for a new loan to help them prepare for Britain’s exit from the single market and customs union at the end of this year, Councillor John Paul O’Shea has said.
Councillor O’Shea said, “I know that Brexit will be challenging for businesses and they want to be prepared, so I welcome the opening of this new scheme by the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar T.D.
“The new Microfinance Ireland (MFI) Brexit Business Loan, will provide up to €25,000 to businesses whose turnover already is or is likely to fall 15% or more or if the business has a short term cashflow need as a result of Brexit. Loans are available for between six months and three years.
“Any business, including a Sole Trader, Partnership or Limited Company, with less than 10 employees and annual turnover of up to €2 million can apply, where they are unable to secure finance from a Bank or commercial lending provider.
“Cork businesses can apply though their Local Enterprise Office Network or can apply directly to Microfinance Ireland (MFI).
“There are less than 50 days until the end of the transition period on 31 December. It is urgent that all businesses large and small in Cork now revisit their readiness plans.
“From 1 January, the UK will no longer apply the rules of the EU’s Single Market and Customs Union. This means that any business that moves goods from, to or through Great Britain will be subject to a range of customs formalities, SPS checks and other regulatory requirements that do not apply to such trade today.
“There is now an extensive range of training material and information available online on the Government’s new Brexit Information Hub to help businesses prepare for Brexit and the lasting change that it will bring. The hub can be accessed via Gov.ie/getbrexitready,” Councillor O’Shea said.
Announcing details of the scheme, Minister Varadkar said: “I know it’s been a really hard year, especially for our small, local businesses and imminent Brexit feels like another body blow on the way. This new loan is just one of the ways we are helping business to prepare.
“It will provide low cost finance of up to €25,000 and business owners can apply through MFI. 77% of MFI’s lending is to businesses outside of Dublin, which is important as businesses all over Ireland will feel the negative effects of Brexit.
“If you are a business owner and are wondering where to start, I’d recommend filling out our Brexit Readiness Checker first and having a look at what needs to be done in your business. Then please reach out and use the help that’s there.”
- Loans from €5,000 – €25,000*
- Loan Terms from six months to three years** (shorter terms depending on purpose)
- Interest rate of 4.5% APR if submitted through the Local Enterprise Office Network or other referral partners, or 5.5% APR if you apply directly
- No fees/charges or any hidden costs
- Fixed repayments with no penalty for early repayment
* The maximum credit exposure for all MFI borrowings is €25,000
**Depending on the term of the loan, interest only repayments for three months may apply in line with our standard products
Who can apply?
- Any business* (Sole Trader, Partnership or Limited Company) with less than 10 employees and annual turnover of up to €2m
- Unable to secure finance from a Bank or commercial lending provider
- Business turnover is or potentially could be impacted by a minimum of 15% or the business has a short term cashflow need as a result of Brexit.
* While Businesses involved in Alcohol Production are deemed to be an excluded sector for MFI Loans, they are eligible to apply for an MFI Brexit Loan.