Female start-ups for rural programme

Female start-ups for rural programme
Minister Michael Creed has launched the call for business women to join the latest cycle of ACORNS. Pictured are: (back row l-r) Lead Entrepreneur Mary B. Walsh of Ire Wel Pallets (Wexford) and past participant Caitriona Considine of Moher Cottage (Clare) (front row l-r) Past participant Emily Brick of Athena Analytics (Kerry), Michael Creed TD, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, programme director Paula Fitzsimons of Fitzsimons Consulting.

Early-stage rural female entrepreneurs are being sought for the fifth ACORNS start-up programme.

Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed, has led the call for participants to follow in the footsteps of the 200 women who have taken part in ACORNS to date.

The deadline for application for this year’s cycle is September 20.

Minister Creed said: “I would urge those who have recently started or are about to start a new business to apply to participate in this exciting initiative, as it is an opportunity not to be missed.”

Paula Fitzsimons is the founder and MD of Fitzsimons Consulting, the company that developed the ACORNS initiative.

She said that the rate of early-stage entrepreneurial activity increased among women in Ireland in 2018, while remaining stable for men.

On average, 850 women start a new business every month in Ireland. The rate of nascent female entrepreneurs in Ireland is now ranked fifth in Europe.

“In most countries, more men than women are early-stage entrepreneurs,” said Paula Fitzsimons.

“This is also true in Ireland. However, the ratio in Ireland continues to narrow, and now stands at 1.6:1 (men to women early-stage entrepreneurs) as more women plan and start new businesses.”

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