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SBASC grants available for small businesses

The Department of Enterprise Trade & Employment has recently launched the Small Business Assistance Scheme for COVID (SBASC).

SBASC gives grants to businesses who are not eligible for the Government’s COVID Restrictions Support Scheme (CRSS), the Fáilte Ireland Business Continuity grant or other direct sectoral grant schemes. This scheme aims to help businesses with their fixed costs, for example, rent, utility bills and security.

Applications for Phase 1 of the Small Business Assistance Scheme for COVID (SBASC) are now open. The applications should be made to your Local Authority. The closing date for receipt of applications is 21 April 2021.

A payment grant of €4,000 is available for the first quarter of this year. A decision on payment for the second quarter of this year will be made in due course. To qualify for the scheme, enterprises must meet the following:

  1. 250 employees or less;
  2. Turnover of over €50,000.
  3. The turnover of the business over the claim period is estimated to be no more that 25% of previous levels – see further details below.
  4. The scheme will be run on a first-come-first-served basis.
  5. Criteria regarding the scheme
  6. The scheme is available to companies, self-employed, sole traders or partnerships;
  7. Minimum turnover of €50,000;
  8. Not owned and operated by a public body;
  9. The business is not eligible for CRSS or Fáilte Ireland Business Continuity Scheme or any other sectoral grant scheme.
  10. They are in receipt of a rates bill from their local authority for business which operates from a building, or similar fixed physical structure on which business rates are payable (mobile premises, or premises which are not permanently fixed in place, do not meet the definition of business premises nor do premises on which no rates are payable);
  11. The turnover of the business over the claim period is estimated to be no more than 25% of the average weekly turnover of the business in 2019 or the projected average weekly turnover of the business for 1 January to 30 June 2021 for businesses that commenced after 1 November 2019;
  12. The business intends to resume trading in full once Government restrictions are eased. The scheme will aid eligible businesses for the period beginning 1 January to 31 March 2021;
  13. The grant will be paid via the Local Authorities, based on an online application;
  14. Eligible applications will receive an initial payment of €4,000 for Q1 2021; and
  15. Payments will be dispersed in the same format as rates refunds via bank transfer.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise this week stated that ‘this new payment will help businesses with fixed costs like rent, insurance, utilities and security. SBASC should help around 7,500 mainly small businesses and although the grant is modest, it will go a long way for the smallest businesses’’.

If you are a small business this new scheme could provide relief during a tough financial time. While times remain challenging for businesses there are a number of helpful options out there to help organisations weather this storm.

At Cronin and Company, we have experts in place who are acutely aware of the various financial packages on offer to help small businesses.

If you think you may be eligible for this support and need assistance with your application, please contact our office.