Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Ireland


Senior entrepreneur 50+

Funding Scheme:

European Social Fund (ESF)


To encourage a greater engagement with enterprise by those aged 50 and over and raising awareness of the benefits that can flow from that engagement


The project “Senior Enterprise” is born in the framework of the ESF-Age Network, consisting of public authorities from 16 EU-member states and regions. The activities of the ESF Age Network are being funded by the European Commission from 2010 to 2013, under the ESF 2007-2013 Budget Line for Learning for Change Networks. The initial focus of the project was to raise awareness of senior enterprise amongst its target audiences and other key influencers, and to encourage the 50+ to start a business either on their own or with partners. It mounted an active media campaign featuring older entrepreneurs as role models. It piloted and has run the 50+ Start Your Own Business (50+ SYOB) training programme in Ireland and a variety of workshops in the UK to support those over 50 into self-employment. A Senior Enterprise 50+ SYOB course, tailored to the needs of the over-50s in France, has now been run in Brittany in conjunction with Inno TSD, Senior Enterprise’s French partner. The project has four ‘work packages’ which include not only awareness raising and starting a new business alone or with others (Starting and Partnering) but also acquiring or investing in a business started by someone else (Investing and Acquiring); and advising an entrepreneur or supporting innovation within a business owned by another person (Advising and Innovating). Plans include piloting an investor workshop in Ireland before rolling it out to France and the UK and developing an approach to training and developing volunteer mentors and business advisors for older entrepreneurs. PRIME in the UK is the thematic leader of this fourth work package. The project period is 2010-2014, providing a budget of 1.8 million euros. INTERREG IVB NWE (a financial instrument of the EU’s Cohesion Policy) is providing 50% of the budget. The remaining 50% is funded through the three partners’ own resources. The project had been carried out by the Mid-East Regional Authority, Ireland (lead partner), the PRIME Initiative, UK and Inno TSD, France.


Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, O’Brien Road, Carlow, Dublin, Tel. +353 59 917 8990, Email


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