Billion Euro Enterprise Fund!

Billion Euro




A Sense of Urgency


BILLION EURO Enterprise Fund

1st July 2009


TÚS MAITH, leath na h-oibre



Crisis: A Sense of Urgency

As we head into July and August many tend to think that all important activities and decisions need to be left until Autumn 2009.  If you are in Government, government employment or semi-state employment you can put your flak jacket on, keep you head down and hang in there, and maybe even go on holidays. It’s different here in the Private Sector.  Last Tuesday I met a senior public official at a workshop who told me the country was now broke; I explained that he was right but that there is a major difference now between the Public and Private Sectors. The Public Sector can borrow and is being paid; but, in the Private Sector, we are broke, cannot borrow and are not being paid. We are ACTUALLY broke while the Public Sector is VIRTUALLY broke.

I’m personally broke and am once again faced with the simple choice which I faced in the early eighties: Stand up and Fight or Cut and Run. I do not want to Cut and Run as my children are being educated here and they need stability and a real future in their own country. The Recession hit me hard in May 2008 and has not eased since in spite of Trojan efforts in domestic and international markets.

I believe our Government is handling the current crisis incorrectly as it has placed too much emphasis on the financial crisis rather than our human potential. This is fundamentally at variance with the founding principles of Fianna Fail, one of which is:

To make the resources and wealth of Ireland subservient to the needs and welfare of all the people of Ireland.

I cannot wait for the Autumn; I believe most people in business cannot wait until the Autumn to see significant action. We cannot wait for Fianna Fail to try to use a success in Lisbon II to rebuild their reputation with the electorate to safeguard their own future. We need ACTION today so that we can get through our current paralysis and go on to deliver genuine long-term economic progress for all our people.

We have the human resources, but they are currently under-capitalised and under-valued. These urgently need to be invested/deployed in new initiatives and projects. We need to put the emphasis on our human and intellectual capital ahead of our financial capital. We talk of a knowledge economy and yet only revere financial wealth. We do not fund intellectual endeavour, research, business and entrepreneurship to the same order of magnitude that we fund the banks and property market. A series of token gestures for enterprise wrapped up in red tape are still being discussed and designed. When it comes to enterprise we talk in millions BUT when we talk of banks and property we talk in billions.

I suggest we act now with urgency and reduce our investment of €4,000,000,000 to Anglo Irish Bank to €3,000,000,000 and release in the coming days ONE BILLION EUROS for enterprise and entrepreneurial endeavours.

 Solution: BILLION EURO Enterprise Fund

The biggest challenge has been what to do and where to focus, thus I suggest a simple process as follows:


  1. Brian Cowen rings Michael Somers of NTMA and says transfer ONE BILLION EUROS to a special Enterprise Account on the 1st of July 2009.
  2. An open competition where every resident in Ireland and every Irish citizen overseas can propose a job      creation idea, enterprise or innovative idea and submit it by the 1st of August 2009.  On completing a simple 2-page Project Outline Form each applicant, up to a maximum of 10,000 applicants, will instantly receive €1000 which can be spent in any      manner by the recipient on his/her project as long as it is spent in the Irish Economy.
  3. These 10,000 ideas and initiatives will be culled, analysed and supported to identify urgently the best      measures that can be taken to get the economy moving. Over the next 24 months we can rapidly invest €1,000,000,000 in the best ideas of the Irish      people. See Table Below.

The injection of the funds straight into the economy and bypassing the banks will kick-start economic recovery, generate momentum and hope and have a huge positive multiplier effect. The engagement of the people in tackling our own problems will get us past fear, fatalism and despondency.  The new enterprises will be a vital part of the economic bedrock of the new Irish economy.  These multiple benefits represent a far better return on investment than merely leaving our money languishing with the failed Anglo Irish Bank.

Control of this BILLION EURO Enterprise Fund should be administered by a representative group active in social and commercial enterprise. Direct feedback from the Public could be used to select the best of ideas.  No party political influence should be tolerated.

With the BILLION EURO Enterprise Fund we will kick start our economy before the end of summer.


BILLION   EURO Enterprise   Fund
STAGE No. of Initiatives Funding in € Total Funding in € Timeframe in weeks
Process Management 1 10,000,000 10,000,000 104
Concepts 10,000 1,000 10,000,000 4
Captured Concepts 5,000 5,000 25,000,000 2
Validated Concepts 2,500 10,000 25,000,000 4
Feasibility Studies 1,500 50,000 75,000,000 4
Pilot Schemes 750 100,000 75,000,000 8
Scale Ups 250 250,000 62,500,000 12
Commercially Viable 125 1,000,000 125,000,000 26
Expansion Equity 60 10,000,000 600,000,000 26
TOTAL: €1 Billion+


What to do

If you think this idea has merit please use your favourite Blog, website or social networking site, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Text, eMail or Snail Mail, Telephone or coffee house, Newspaper or Radio Station to build momentum and let Brian Cowen know that we cannot wait until the Autumn. We must act quickly and decisively.


‘Come the day and come the hour,

Come the power and the glory

We have come to answer our Country’s Call

From the four proud Provinces of Ireland’


If not now then when, if not us, then who?

Once more with integrity – Is feidir linn!

Raymond Sexton

Tangible Ireland

+353 86 3011 044

Tús maith, leath na hoibre! translates to ‘A Good Start is half the work!