Local firm in €20m joint fund venture for SMEs
Goodbody and Enniscorthy- and Dublin-based Hughes Blake Chartered Accountants have formed a joint venture to provide fresh funding for quality Irish SMEs under the Employment and Investment Incentive Scheme (EIIS).
The new joint venture, EIIS Management Limited, plans to raise an annual fund under the government scheme which allows Irish taxpayers who participate in it to claim up to 40% income tax relief on their investment.
The JV's first fund, the Goodbody 2015 EIIS Fund, is prepared to raise up to €20 million from private investors. The fund will then invest in a wide range of eligible Irish companies including hotels, manufacturing businesses, nursing homes and wind farms. The fund will have money to invest from January 1, 2016 with investment allocations ranging from €500,000 up to €5 million in any one company.
'There has been a severe shortage in funding available for SMEs since the banking crisis, but even as the economic recovery continues, there is a continuing lack of credit for growing SMEs,' said Stephen McGivern, Partner in Hughes Blake, 'We believe that there now exists a strong commercial opportunity to provide EIIS funding to good quality Irish SMEs.'
The fund will also satisfy demand from private investors for tax-relief based investment alternatives to pension contributions. The EIIS is one of the few remaining tax reliefs and can be set against all income.
'Our clients are showing greater investment appetite,' said Eamonn Glancy, Head of Wealth Management at Goodbody.
'The opportunity to invest in quality Irish SMEs in a tax-efficient way is very attractive when combined with the significant investment experience of Goodbody and Hughes Blake.'
The announcement follows recent changes to the EIIS scheme to increase the number and types of companies able to avail of funding, as well as the amounts companies will be able to raise. The annual investment limits per company have increased from €2.5 million to €5 million with a lifetime limit per company of €15 million, up from the previous cap of €10 million.