Webinar title: Climate Action Funding & Supports - Manufacturing sector

Climate Enterprise Action Fund Webinar Series – Manufacturing Sector

The transition to a low carbon world has become a defining force for business. For Irish companies, this means opportunities to compete and grow as global investments in a sustainable future accelerates.

The manufacturing sector has the capability to address many of the problems in our society, including the threat from climate change. However, as the world aims for net zero emissions by 2050, the sector faces significant challenges in reducing its own energy consumption.

This webinar includes the following guest speakers who will share their sustainability journey, as well as provide helpful advice to companies of all sizes:

  • Nick Reynolds – CSR Advisor, Business in the Community

  • Patrick Beausang – CEO, Passive Sills

  • Andrea Cawley – Commercial Director, Automatic Plastics

  • Patrick Buckley – Managing Director, EPS

Watch the Climate Enterprise Action Fund webinar series here.

CEAF ICT & Services

Climate Enterprise Action Fund Webinar Series – ICT & Services

The transition to a low carbon world has become a defining force for business. For Irish companies, this means opportunities to compete and grow as global investments in a sustainable future accelerates.

ICT has the capability to address many of the problems in our society, including the threat from climate change. However, as the world aims for net zero emissions by 2050, the sector faces significant challenges in reducing its own energy consumption and environmental impacts.

Similarly, there are many ways in which services can be part of the green economy and drive sustainable development. Business services can contribute to increasing sustainability for processes and products across industries, and speed up the transition towards a green economy.

Within both sectors, sustainability is now recognised as a priority issue.

This webinar includes the following guest speakers who will share their sustainability journey and provide helpful advice to companies of all sizes:

  • Yvonne Holmes – Chief Sustainability Officer, AIB

  • Andrea Carroll – Sr. Susutainability Programme Manager EMEA, Amazon Web Services

  • Laura Costello – Strategy Director – Purpose & Planet, Thinkhouse

  • Eanna Glynn – Head of Sustainability, BidX1

  • Brian Minehane – Account Director & Sustainability Programme Lead, Ergo

 

Watch the Climate Enterprise Action Fund webinar series here.

    Webinar title: Climate Action Funding & Supports - food and Beverage sector

    Climate Enterprise Action Fund Webinar Series – Food and Beverage Sector

    The transition to a low carbon world has become a defining force for business. For Irish companies, this means opportunities to compete and grow as global investments in a sustainable future accelerates.

    The food & beverage sector has the capability to address many of the problems in our society, including the threat from climate change. However, as the world aims for net zero emissions by 2050, the sector faces significant challenges in reducing its own energy consumption.

    This webinar includes the following guest speakers who will share their sustainability journey and provide helpful advice to companies of all sizes:

    • Deirdre Ryan – Director of Origin Green, Bord Bia

    • Owen Keogh – Head of Corporate Social Responsibility, Lidl Ireland

    • Louise Brennan – Head of Technical, O’Brien Fine Foods

    • Rosaleen Hyde – Operations Manager, Ballymaloe Foods

    • Padraig Mallon – Sustainability Director, Kerry Group

    Watch the Climate Enterprise Action Fund webinar series here.

      UK packaging webinar title

      The UK Packaging Sector Webinar – Opportunities and Challenges

      Few sectors have been affected greater by the COVID-19 pandemic than the packaging sector. The increased demand on food packaging with the upsurge of people eating at home and companies forced to rethink their packaging as minimalism made way for health and safety, the packaging sector was forced to change quickly to the ‘new normal’.

      Now as a post-pandemic world looks somewhat in sight, it’s time to reassess the UK market and re-evaluate how Irish packaging suppliers can take advantage of the £11 billion UK packaging sector.

      In this webinar, Andrew Finch, UK Packaging Consultant examines the UK packaging sector and discusses:

      • State of the UK market post-COVID-19 and post-Brexit

      • Opportunities for Irish packaging providers in the market

      • Latest demands from UK multiples and key industry stakeholders

      • Sustainability outlook in the UK

      • How to best engage UK packaging buyers

      Gain key business insights with our on-demand UK webinar series.

        Net Zero UK – UK Local Authorities & the Net Zero Challenge – Webinar

         

        The UK’s 408 local authorities will play a crucial and defining role in the UK’s net zero challenge with responsibility for:

        • overseeing the adoption of innovative zero carbon technologies

        • investing in climate-resilient urban infrastructure

        • driving energy efficiency through building retrofitting

        • placing a greater emphasis on environmental criteria in procurement policy

        This Enterprise Ireland UK webinar discusses how this evolution is reflected in procurement practices, with local authorities giving increasing consideration to social value and carbon emissions and what this means for Irish SMEs in the sector.

        Speakers include:

        • Todd Holden, Energy Policy & Programme Lead, Greater Manchester Combined Authority

        • Steve Turner, Business Director, Connected Places Catapult

        • Bret Willers, Head of Climate Change and Sustainability, Coventry City Council

        • Christopher Hammond, Network Membership Director, UK100

          Gain key business insights with our on-demand UK webinar series

           

          Net Zero UK – UK Agriculture & the Net Zero Challenge – Webinar

           

          Enterprise Ireland UK hosted a webinar examining the net zero ambition of the UK agricultural sector and the implications for Irish SMEs working in the industry. Michael Haverty, Partner with The Andersons Centre, delivered a comprehensive briefing and Q&A session, which included:

          An overview of the UK’s policy drivers for net zero in agriculture, including, the Agriculture Bill, Environment Bill and the role of the devolved administrations

          • Carbon markets; The scope for direct payments to farmers for sequestration

          • Food industry initiatives; Consumer pressure, Retailer commitments to achieving net zero e.g. Co-op, Tesco, Sainsbury’s

          • Food processors and net zero commitments e.g., Arla, ABP

          • Farm level net zero implications; net zero agritech trends, implications for inputs usage

          • How Irish SMEs can maximise on the opportunites in this space

          Gain key business insights with our on-demand UK webinar series

           

          Net Zero UK – The UK Energy Market & the Net Zero Challenge – Webinar

           

           

          This webinar explores the major changes both underway and planned as the UK seeks to transition to a fully decarbonised energy system.

          From the increasing role of renewable energy, to the decarbonisation of the heating and transport sectors, this Enterprise Ireland UK webinar invites experts and industry leaders to understand the timelines, technologies and innovation required for the UK energy system to achieve net zero.

          Speakers:

          • Andrew Lever, Director of Programmes & Innovation, The Carbon Trust

          • Cian McLeavey Reville, Market Strategy Manager, National Grid ESO

          • Jon Slowe, Founding Director, Delta EE

            Gain key business insights with our on-demand UK webinar series

              Net Zero UK – Nine key steps towards a net zero construction business – Webinar

              The net zero challenge facing the UK will reform the ways in which business is done. This webinar focuses on the construction sector and examines the nine key steps towards a net zero construction business. Industry leaders from the UK and Ireland gave their insights and participated discussed their decarbonisation experiences.

              Speakers:

              • Isabel McAllister, Responsible Business Director, Mace

              • Dr. Matt Kennedy, Associate Director, Arup

              • Jo-Ann Garbutt, Director Sustainability, Mercury

              • Ché McGann, Sustainability Strategy & ESG Reporting Lead at Clearstream Solutions

              Gain key business insights with our on-demand UK webinar series

                Pricing Excellence – Pricing Study 2021 Webinar

                This Pricing Study was conducted by Enterprise Ireland in collaboration with Simon-Kucher & Partners.

                The study recorded nearly 500 responses with strong representation across all sectors demonstrating that the topic remains a high priority for businesses.

                This webinar presents the results of the survey along with guidance on how to develop and implement a price increase process.

                 

                Gain key business insights with our on-demand UK webinar series

                Net Zero webinar - How, When & Why

                Net Zero UK – Why, When and How – Webinar

                The net zero challenge facing the UK will reform the ways in which business is done. To help Irish exporters understand how these changes will affect their sector and growth, Enterprise Ireland UK and UK net zero experts hosted the webinar Net Zero UK Overview, Why, When and How? 

                The webinar examines

                • The major industry and policy drivers that will accelerate the UK economy towards net zero emissions

                • The impact of the UK’S Sixth Carbon Budget, Green Industrial Strategy and individual corporate net zero plans

                • Key sectoral updates

                • Enterprise Ireland’s organisational climate action strategy

                • Green initiatives such as the €10 million Climate Enterprise Action Fund

                Gain key business insights with our on-demand UK webinar series

                 

                Designing the workplace of the future – A new guide for all employers

                  The world of work was shaken to its core in March 2020 when the Covid-19 pandemic hit Ireland and hundreds of thousands of Irish workers had to suddenly work from home.

                  The slow and steady drive towards digitalisation accelerated sharply, and virtual meeting programmes such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams became commonplace. Now, 15 months on, and with the vaccination programme well underway, employers can begin to think about a return to the workplace – hopefully permanently. But the many lessons learned during the pandemic has had both employers and employees thinking about the future workplace – will we ever go back to the way it was? And do we want to?

                  Enterprise Ireland has produced a new guide, ‘Emerging Through Covid-19 – The future of work, which aims to help business owners think about the positives and negatives from the last 15 months and to use these to build a sustainable business model for the future. With many employees welcoming the idea of remote working into the future, either full-time or for part of the week, is it time for employers to recognise the positives of remote working and tie it into their company policy on a permanent basis? And if so, how can they make it sustainable?

                  “This is a follow-on from last year’s Covid-19 employer guide; last year we looked at the health and safety aspects of returning to work, while the theme of this year’s guide is around the future of work,” explains Karen Hernández, Senior Executive, Client Management Development at Enterprise Ireland. “During Covid, the workplace has changed, the nature of work has changed for a lot of people, and what employees expect from their employers has changed. Our aim is for all companies to be prepared to put in place the right structures and practices that suit their business needs and also the needs of their employees.

                  “A large portion of our client base experienced the need to rush into remote working when Covid-19 hit Ireland in 2020. There have been some advantages and opportunities associated with this; some businesses found they’re as productive, if not more productive when working remotely. This guide aims to help companies take what’s worked well over the last 15 months and create some sustainable practices and processes that work for everybody.”

                  The guide was developed in partnership with Fredericka Sheppard and Joyce Rigby-Jones of Voltedge, a highly regarded HR consultancy based in Dublin. “The objective with the guide is that it gives you a framework to start developing your own plan for the return to the office,” explains Fredericka. “All organisations are going to have their own dynamic, their own set of circumstances, so there is no one-size-fits-all solution to this. Our aim was to identify key pillars for organisations to use to develop structure and a suitable framework for their business.”

                   

                  The importance of asking questions

                  A huge emphasis is placed on the need for communication with employees when making these decisions. “Employers need to engage with and actively listen to their employees, while also driving their business forward,” says Joyce. “This is intended as a broad guide, where employers can pick and choose the relevant pieces to them.”

                  “It’s very important that employees feel that they’re being heard,” adds Fredericka. “However, decisions need to be made based on a number of factors, and employee input is just one of those factors. Obviously it’s really important to manage expectations and sometimes it’s just down to how you ask the questions. Give them some context from a business point of view. It’s not just about the employees’ wish-list, it’s also about creating a sustainable workplace for the future.”

                   

                  Managing remote workers

                  Many employers are looking at keeping some sort of remote or flexible working practices in place – and offering this flexibility can be very positive when it comes to attracting talent. “Almost two-thirds of our client base are saying they find it hard to attract, engage and retain talent,” says Karen. “Companies need to consult and stay close to their employees and ask them what they want – and include aspects like flexibility as part of a value proposition to attract candidates.

                  “Many companies that we are working with are looking at some sort of hybrid model, where employees combine time working in the office and time spent working remotely, at home or in co-working spaces. There are huge upsides, such as accessing skills from different parts of the country that they never would have before – offering remote, flexible or hybrid working is attractive to employees.

                  However, this can be difficult to manage, and companies need to consider what works for the team as a whole as well as what’s right for individuals within those teams.”

                  “There’s a big need for management support and training, especially for middle and line managers and supervisors who are dealing with a remote workforce,” explains Joyce. “It’s difficult for them, but it’s important that they get it right. Ensuring your managers are confident in what they do, and in their engagement with their teams. We are hearing that companies are looking to bring their employees into the office more, but it’s about getting that blend right between remote working and the office. One aspect that we emphasised in the guide is the need to make sure you are not discriminating against employees who are not in the office environment.”

                  Identifying and managing issues such as burn-out and isolation is essential if companies are to offer some sort of remote working policy. “Companies that have regular check-ins and meetings with staff and use different methods of communication, such as video calls, emails and direct messaging are more likely to keep employees engaged when working remotely.  It’s also important for employees to have individual focus time, where they are able to detach from colleagues and concentrate on getting their work done without interruption”, says Karen.  “Long term, we don’t know enough about hybrid working for a definite ‘best practice’ but instead companies should pilot different ways of working – for instance, we have some companies who are trialling a ‘team days’ concept – having the whole team in for certain days of the week, then for the rest of the week, they’re working from home.”

                   

                  Piloting the new workplace

                  The aim of the guide is to pose those broad questions that will help employers in every sector decide on the right workplace for the future of their business – but there is no need to rush into a decision. “The biggest challenge for employers is making the decision as to how you’re going to handle this working environment,” says Joyce. “Are you going to fully return, are you going for a hybrid, can you facilitate a full return in the workspace that you have? Employers need to make very big decisions, and very strategic, long-term decisions, so we’re suggesting that they talk to their employees about what they want and then piloting whatever they plan to do before they make any strategic decisions that will impact on the business going forward.”

                  Covid-19 has had a huge effect on how we work – but now is the time to use what we have learned since March 2020 to create a more inclusive, sustainable business model, one that pushes the business forward while creating a culture that values employees and their health and wellbeing more than ever before. This can only be a positive thing.

                   

                  To download Enterprise Ireland’s new guide, ‘Emerging Through Covid-19 – The future of work’, click here.

                  UK Super Deduction: How it affects your UK customers

                  As part of the 2021 UK budget, the British government has introduced the largest tax incentive on plant and equipment capital investments in their history.

                  This incentive, known as the super deduction, allows UK companies to claim 130% capital allowances on qualifying plant and machinery investments. This is an increase on the 18% ordinary relief prior and came into effect on 1st April 2021 running until the end of March 2023.

                  Alongside the super deduction, the UK government also introduced a 50% first year allowance (FYA) on for special rate assets until 31 March, up from a 6% allowance previously. These changes make the UK capital allowance regime more internationally competitive, lifting the net present value of UK plant and machinery allowances from 30th to 1st in the OECD.

                  What does this mean for you and your UK customers?

                  This incentive reduces the effective cost of equipment for UK manufacturers, thus making plant and machinery investments more attractive.

                  For example, under current rules, if a company invests £100,000 in a piece of equipment they can write off the cost of that equipment against their tax bill. i.e. Since 19% of £100,000 is £19,000, the effective cost of their equipment is £81,000.

                  With the new super deduction, you can write off 130% of your investment in “plant and machinery” against your tax bill. i.e. 130% of £100,000 is £130,000, which at the 19% corporate tax rate allows you to write off £24,700. This means the effective cost of your equipment is now £75,300. Therefore, companies are incentivised to move forward or make additional capital investments.

                  This is necessary as investment has dropped significantly due to the pandemic in the UK which was on top of historically low business investment relative to the UK’s peers. Chancellor Rishi Sunak reiterated this need for increased investment “With the lowest corporation tax in the G7, we need to do even more to encourage businesses to invest – for decades we have lagged behind our international peers”.

                  It is expected that these incentives should act as a catalyst to the return of capital investment in the UK post pandemic with Stephen Phipson of MAKE UK (The UK manufacturer’s association) stating that the super deduction should “turbocharge investment”.

                  For many manufacturers in the UK investment cycles have stalled or been delayed due to Covid-19 and Brexit and may now be looking at capital investments for the first time in several years. According to a MAKE UK survey following the budget announcement, almost a quarter (22.6%) of manufacturers stated plans to increase investments in response to the super deduction. Furthermore, 28.1% of those surveyed said they will bring forward planned investments in response.

                  This indicates the impact that these incentives will have on investments in 2021 and beyond, potentially making your customer base more receptive to your offering.

                  This is one of the first major supports brought in for manufacturers since the UK industrial strategy was axed earlier this year and it is expected that there is further supports to come for UK manufacturers. There has been calls for an overarching plan for business to replace the industrial strategy, bringing together policies around sustainability, skills and trade, but it is uncertain whether such a plan will be put in place.

                  Nevertheless, the introduction of incentives like the super deduction are sure to be welcomed by manufacturers in the UK and Irish companies should ensure they are up to date with any supports their customers may be receiving for their product/service. To learn more about Tax super deduction visit www.gov.uk.

                  Stay up to date with Enterprise Ireland UK on LinkedIn or get in touch here.