Enterprise Ireland has announced funding of just under €250,000 for the Tradebridge project. The regional initiative, which was initially developed by Wexford County Council and Wexford Enterprise Centre, seeks to develop export market opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SME’s) located in the South East of Ireland and in 16 counties in SE Georgia, America.
Cllr. Michael Sheehan, Cathaoirleach of Wexford County Council welcomed the announcement, saying the Tradebridge project would build on the close connections that Wexford has developed with Savannah, Georgia and the wider area, and would foster even closer co-operation with Georgia Southern University who launched their new third-level campus in Wexford in November of 2019. “The investment provides a real opportunity for SME’s in the Southeast region to explore new markets and opportunities beyond Brexit” said Cllr. Sheehan.
Eamonn Murphy, Chairman of Wexford Enterprise Centre also welcomed the Tradebridge funding announcement. “The fact that Enterprise Ireland has backed the Tradebridge initiative is true recognition that this region is helping itself – we’re not waiting for others to do it for us” said Mr. Murphy. This moment is a turning point in the economic life of the Wexford region. Tradebridge is an example of what can be achieved when the entrepreneurial spirit of the people of Wexford Enterprise Centre, with the support of Wexford County Council’s Economic Development Department cooperate and collaborate with our partners in the Savannah Economic Development Authority to reach common goals” he concluded.
In addition to the funding from Enterprise Ireland, the Local Enterprise Offices across the local authorities have provided additional funding of €72,000 to the Tradebridge project, providing a total investment of €320,000. The funding is ring-fenced over three years and will commence working to develop exports sales in advanced manufacturing, financial services, technology and other sectors with high export potential, creating additional jobs in the local economy.