High street businesses benefit from online grants but call for further support

The Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar TD, has today announced the successful applicants approved for funding through the Covid-19 Online Retail Scheme. Picture Maxwells

183 retailers have been given grants to expand their stores online.

Over 300 applications were made as part of the scheme and almost 200 applications were turned down 

However, it will be opened again in the future with retailers urged to plan for their claim.

€6.5m is being put into the 183 retailers who were successful to help move their businesses online.

Best Menswear is one of them, its Managing Director is John Smith he says it will help, but more support is needed. 

Mr Smith says: "We have landlord rent issues and then we wage issues, turnover is going to be down by anything up to 40% by the end of the year. 

"Certainly the industry not just Best Menswear are going to need support."

Julie Sinnamon from Enterprise Ireland does not believe helping move businesses online will cause the death of bricks and mortar stores. 

Ms Sinnamon says: "We've gone through quite a massive social experiment globally and people have gone online so I think there is a really strong position for online.

"But I don't see the high street as dead I think they are complementary to each other."

Enterprise Ireland says it will reopen the scheme for more businesses in the future.