Female entrepreneurs invited to apply for free business development programme

Going for Growth
(L-R) Olivia Lynch, KPMG, Vanessa Creaven, Spotlight Oral Care, Julie Sinnamon, Enterprise Ireland.

Going for Growth will help 60 female entrepreneurs to achieve aspirations



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30 October 2019 | 0

Business development programme, Going for Growth, is seeking female entrepreneurs to take part its latest cycle.

Now in its 12th year, the part-time programme will help 60 female entrepreneurs to achieve their growth aspirations.

With support from Enterprise Ireland and KPMG, the programme will run from January to June 2020. The deadline for applications is Monday, December 9, 2019. It is open to entrepreneurs from all sectors. Participation is free.




Designed to address the challenges of growing a business, those selected will join interactive round table sessions led by Lead Entrepreneurs – successful businesswomen with business-growing experience.

Four previous Going for Growth participants are among this year’s Lead Entrepreneurs: Dr Anne Cusack, Critical Healthcare; Chupi Sweetman-Durney, Chupi; Claire McHugh, Axonista; and Oonagh O’Hagan, owner of Meagher’s Pharmacy Group.

To date more than 660 female entrepreneurs have taken part. At the conclusion of the most recent cycle, 64 participants reported a combined turnover of €45.9 million – an increase in reported sales of €8 million over the cycle; the creation of an additional 81 new jobs over the cycle, bringing to over 593 the total number employed; three first time exporters, increasing to 35 the number of participants with export experience.

Ambition gap

The programme was initially designed by Fitzsimons Consulting to bridge the gap in entrepreneurial ambition between women and men. Founder and managing director Paula Fitzsimons said the gap was “identified by Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) research in 2007, which showed that for every female entrepreneur with growth expectations, there were nearly five times as many male entrepreneurs.

“This gap has significantly narrowed (to 3.5:1) as the rate of female entrepreneurs with growth ambitions has increased. Research shows that 25% of early stage female entrepreneurs expect to increase jobs by 50% and to create ten or more jobs within five years.”

Fitzsimons Consulting now implements the programme.

“Supporting ambitious businesswomen to start and to grow enterprises is a priority for Enterprise Ireland. In addition to targeting a continued increase in the number of high potential start-ups led by female founders, a key focus for Enterprise Ireland is to increase the number of companies that achieve scale,” said Julie Sinnamon, CEO Enterprise Ireland.

“The Going for Growth programme provides unique supports to ambitious businesswomen in the achievement of their growth aspirations through learning, collaboration and most importantly, through role models and mentoring. We will continue to partner with Going for Growth, to grow the cohort of businesses of scale led by women, expanding their reach in global markets and creating and sustaining jobs in Ireland.”

Visit goingforgrowth.com for more information.

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