Deadline day for Online Trading Voucher applications is Friday, November 28th

Friday, November 28th is deadline day for applications for the Online Trading Voucher (OTV) scheme which was rolled out by the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) in Cork this summer.

The OTV scheme offers small businesses and retailers the opportunity to apply for match funding to the value of €2,500 to develop and improve their online trading presence.

With digital trade in Ireland growing at a rate of 16% per annum and the digital economy in Ireland set to grow to €21 billion by 2017; yet only 23% of Irish SMEs currently trading online, the scheme offers small businesses a huge opportunity to develop and engage in the hugely powerful market of online sales.

The LEOs in Cork City and County have €150,000 worth of OTVs available to distribute to eligible SMEs in the region which can be used for the development or upgrade of e-commerce websites by implementing online payments or booking systems, purchasing of internet related software, online advertising, development of an app, implementation of a digital marketing strategy or training/ skills development to establish and manage an online trading activity. Over €100,000 worth of OTVs have been awarded to Cork businesses in recent weeks.

The scheme is open to businesses that are trading for over 12 months and have a limited online trading presence, less than 10 employees and a turnover less than €2 million.

Speaking about the opportunity afforded by the OTV scheme, Sean O’Sullivan, Head of Enterprise at the Local Enterprise Office South Cork, said “International research shows that SMEs who adopt online trading grow twice as fast and export twice as much as their offline competitors. Trading online offers a major opportunity to Cork retailers and SMEs, at a time when growth in these sectors is so imperative; and so we’re encouraging SMEs from all sectors to apply for their Online Trading Vouchers available before the closing date of November 28th.”

He continued “Our role as Local Enterprise Offices is to assist and support the micro-business community and this scheme is just one of the many initiatives offered, and one which so many can benefit from.”

The Online Trading Voucher Programme is supported by the Department of Communications, Energy & Natural Resources through the National Digital Strategy which aims to get a further 2,000 businesses trading online by the end of 2015.

For more information or to apply for the Online Trading Voucher Programme before Friday 28th November call Ciara on (021) 4975281, email or visit

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