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The Irish business landscape is being reshaped by the Covid-19 pandemic, but startup culture continues to thrive – particularly in the West of Ireland as risk-takers and entrepreneurs size up the opportunities to start new businesses.

In this new episode of the Western Development Commission’s ‘Pulse of The West’ podcast called ‘Scaling Up’, WDC CEO Tomás O’Siocháin is joined by guests Gillian Nelis, Managing Editor of the Sunday Business Post, CitySwift CEO Brian O’Rourke, Scale Ireland CEO Liz McCarthy, as well as expert input from WDC Investment Manager Gillian Buckley.

The panel share their unique insights into Ireland’s start-up ecosystem including investment and scaling up and reveal what businesses need to do to thrive in a particularly challenging landscape.

As Gillian Nelis puts it: “Both the political class and the public recognise that we are in totally unprecedented times. Standing back is not an option – there is a thriving startup scene and family business scene in Ireland that needs support. In ways, the stars are aligning out of this negative situation.”

The podcast episode discusses how starting a business can be beset by risk and wrong steps but with good advice and the right people – as well as investment – behind you, the chances of success and reward become ever greater.

Gillian Buckley outlines how the WDC is a unique funding source for businesses, community groups, social enterprises, and projects in the Western region. The WDC has a number of sub-fund including the Business Investment Fund which provides equity and loan capital, a Community Enterprise Fund, a dedicated fund for the audiovisual sector called the Wrap Fund, a Micro Loan fund and Strategic Investment Fund for larger-scale projects.

To discover more about the excitement of scaling up and starting a business, listen to ‘Pulse of The West’, you can listen to it on our podcast page or you can download it from wherever you get your podcasts.