The Clustering Programme is a pilot programme which aims to support industry led groups to maximise the benefits of collaborative opportunities including, but not limited to:
- enhanced productivity and income
- increased market share
- increased innovation and knowledge transfer
- enhanced capability
Clustering can be defined as a group of companies with limited membership who have agreed to collaborate in some way to achieve specific business objectives through finite projects and programmes that are likely to result in enhanced competitive advantage and/or mutual financial gain.
The goal of this programme to support time limited collaborative projects that will achieve measurable benefits to members of the group by addressing the needs of participant companies e.g. sectoral/sub-sectoral development initiatives, supply-chain optimisation, realising economies of scale, exploring export market opportunities and potential convergence opportunities.
A clustering initiative must be proposed by a group of firms:
- with specific membership
- who have agreed to collaborate in some way
- to achieve specific business objectives that are likely to result in enhanced competitive advantage and/or mutual financial gain
- in addition, established networks or trade/business associations may also apply by submitting an application to this call.
Eligible projects must:
- Include at least five companies that are clients of an enterprise development agency (i.e. Enterprise Ireland, Údarás na Gaeltachta, IDA Ireland, and/or City/County Enterprise Boards).
- Applicants are encouraged to include “affiliate” enterprises (e.g. companies based in other jurisdictions including those based in Northern Ireland, global corporations with presences in Ireland, companies not clients of an enterprise development agency, networks, trade/business associations, academia, suppliers etc.) in their project proposals as participants/contributors to the project.
- Be additional to the activities currently being undertaken by an already established network or trade/business association and additional to activities currently funded by the State to them.
If you are interested in getting involved in a SBC cluster, let us know. Let us know what collaboration areas you are interested i. Post a comment or send us an e-mail (ron[at]smallbusinesscan.com)