Budget 2024: A big boost for Irish start-up and scaling companies

Scale Ireland, the independent not-for-profit representative organisation for Irish start-ups and scaling businesses has strongly welcomed the Government measures to support the indigenous tech sector in Budget 2024, describing it‘as an important and timely Budget for the indigenous tech sector and a big boost for startup and scaling companies’.

As the largest representative group for the Irish tech start-up and scaling companies, Scale Ireland has welcomed Minister McGrath and the Government’s strong response to thesector’s needs and potential to ensure Ireland becomes an Innovation leader. In particular, Scale Ireland welcomes:

● The increase in the R&D tax credit rate from 25% to 30%;

● Doubling of the amount reimbursed in year one under the R&D Tax Credit scheme from€25,000 to €50,000;

● Reduced Capital Gains Tax (16% for individuals or 18% through Partnerships) forAngel Investors who invest in innovative start-ups and SMEs;

● Doubling of the investment ceiling to €500,000 for investments held for 4 years underthe Employment Investment Incentive Scheme;

● Establishment of a Tax Administration Liaison Committee sub-group to simplify taxreliefs and schemes.

● EU Approval to extend the Key Employee Engagement Programme (KEEP share optionscheme) to the end of 2025 and raise the lifetime company limit for KEEP shares from €3 million to €6 million per company as announced in Budget 2023.

The CEO of Scale Ireland, Martina Fitzgerald said "Budget 2024 delivers for theindigenous tech sector with important and tangible changes for Ireland’s entrepreneurs andfounders. The increase in the R&D credit rate will incentivise increased R&D activity andspending in our sector. We also welcome the pledge to look at simplifying state supportsand reliefs which has been a key issue for our members. It is vital that these schemes arefit for purpose and we welcome Minister McGrath’s commitment to look at this.

The Chair of Scale Ireland, Brian Caulfield also said: ‘We also welcome the move toreduce Capital Gains Tax applied to Angel Investors who play a vital role in funding our startups. Today’s announcement will incentivise further investment into start-ups at a time when the funding landscape has been challenging. This enhanced relief will play an important role to incentivise angel investors to invest their financial capital and expertise in innovative enterprises and is a welcome boost. However, the ownership requirement of a minimum of 5% is problematic. Very few angel investors reach that threshold. We hope to engage with the Minister to ensure this is addressed in the Finance Bill’’.

Scale Ireland has long championed many of the measures announced today, and we look forward to working with the government on implementing these changes. Our discussions with Minister McGrath and other important stakeholders have been integral in bringing about these important changes.

About Scale Ireland: Scale Ireland is a non-profit organisation representing the interests of Irish start-ups and scale-ups. Established in late 2019, it is now the largest representative organisation for thesector. Its mission is to support, promote and represent the indigenous tech sector and tomake Ireland a leading location for innovation and entrepreneurship leading to increased innovation, employment and exports.