SFA E-Zine – The Tuesday Edition
 

Dear Member,

In this week's e-zine we bring you information on the Minimum Wage and PRSI changes and a Post Budget 2016 Analysis. There is the chance to hear from a winner of the 2015 SFA National Small Business Awards and we provide details on Mediation Week, upcoming events and recent press coverage.


As always, we’d love to hear from you about any queries you may have, issues you wish to have raised with Government or other stakeholders and your ideas on how we can improve the business environment for us all. Please contact me directly at tel: 01 605 1602 or 
e-mail: patricia.callan@sfa.ie or tweet: @SFA_Irl or visit www.sfa.ie.


Kind Regards,

Patricia Callan
SFA Director


NEWS
Minimum Wage & PRSI changes
 
In last week's Budget announcement, the Government confirmed that the minimum wage for an experienced adult employee will increase...

In last week's Budget announcement, the Government confirmed that the minimum wage for an experienced adult employee will increase from €8.65 to €9.15 per hour from 1 January 2016, an increase of 50c per hour.

Employer PRSI thresholds have also changed, so that the lower rate of employer PRSI (8.5%) will increase to cover workers earning up to €376 per week (previously €356 per week) from 1 January 2016.

Employers will therefore benefit from the lower PRSI threshold for the new minimum wage. The PRSI changes, do not however offset any of the direct costs associated with an increase in the national minimum wage, for further details visit the SFA website.

National minimum wage increases sometimes cause a domino effect to take place, where employees earning above the previous minimum wage - but not a lot more than the new minium wage - seek higher pay on the basis that they are entitled to an increase in line with their minimum wage colleagues. It is important to note that such relativity claims are expressly prohibited under the National Minimum Wage Act.  For more see the SFA guideline.

For any queries around these changes, or for advice on how to implement wage changes in your business, contact Jonathan Callan, SFA Executive, tel: 01 605 1668. Email: jonathan.callan@sfa.ie

 

Post Budget Analysis 2016
 
The final budget of the 31st Dáil was announced on 13 October 2015 by Ministers Michael Noonan and Brendan Howlin. It contained a number of measures that the SFA had called for and demonstrated...

The final budget of the 31st Dáil was announced on 13 October 2015 by Ministers Michael Noonan and Brendan Howlin. It contained a number of measures that the SFA had called for and demonstrated an appreciation by Government of the importance of entrepreneurship and small business in Ireland.

The reduction of the Capital Gains Tax rate for entrepreneurs to 20% will be a significant boost to serial entrepreneurs looking to start new ventures and create more jobs.

The initial moves by the Government to end the discrimination in the tax system against self-employed and proprietary directors is also hugely important for SFA members. This has been a long-fought battle and it is to be welcomed that the risk takers and job-creators in the economy will be treated equally by the tax system. 

The SFA also endorsed the Government's target of reducing the marginal tax rate to beneath 50%, with reductions in USC.  This, along with the childcare subvention, will put more money in people's pockets and serve to boost the domestic economy. It should also relieve wage inflation pressures and thus help small business competitiveness.

An increase of 50c in the National Minimum Wage was announced in Budget 2016, you can read further details here.

Full analysis of the Budget by Ibec is provided on the SFA website.

Hear from the winner of the Small Business Exporter of the Year 2015
 
Paul Glynn, Chairman of  Topform, winner of the Small Business Exporter of the Year in the 2015 SFA National Small Business Awards, tells us about his award-winning business...

Paul Glynn, Chairman of Topform, winner of the Small Business Exporter of the Year in the 2015 SFA National Small Business Awards, tells us about his award-winning business in this short video clip.

Paul describes winning the Award as 'confirmation we are doing things right' and as 'a shot in the arm to continue to develop our business'. 

The application deadline of Friday, 30 October for the 2016 SFA National Small Business Awards is fast approaching, don't miss out on your chance to enter visit www.sfa.ie/awards. 

The Awards competition is open to all companies in Ireland with up to 50 employees and there is a wide range of categories to suit all sectors – including a category for companies with under five employees and newly formed businesses.

The Awards are free to enter with a €50,000 prize package for ALL finalists.

If you would like more information on the Awards and for applications forms please visit www.sfa.ie/awards or email Louise Swail awards@sfa.ie tel: 01605 1664 or Tweet about the Awards using #SFAAwards2016

Mediation Week
 
This week is Mediation Awareness Week (19-24 October). There are a variety of events taking place around the country, which you can find details of...

This week is Mediation Awareness Week (19-24 October). There are a variety of events taking place around the country, which you can find details of on: www.mediationawarenessweek.ie.

You can also find short informative Video Guides on answering key questions on Mediation on these links:

EVENTS
SFA National Small Business Awards 2016 Application Deadline
 
Friday, 30 October - apply now
SFA Webinar - What does 2016 have in store for your business?
 
Monday, 2 November 2pm

On Monday, 2 November from 2.15pm to 2.45pm, Fergal O'Brien Ibec’s Head of Policy and Chief Economist will deliver a SFA Webinar providing a policy and economic outlook on 'What does 2016 have in store for your business?'

Fergal will discuss what trends we can expect to see in export markets and the domestic consumer market, what's happening in the jobs market and what this will mean for pay trends in 2016. 

Fergal leads and coordinates Ibec’s activity across a range of business policy issues. He represents Irish business on a number of fora at both national and EU level and is currently the Chair of BusinessEurope’s Economic Policy Committee. Fergal is a regular commentator on the economy and domestic and international policy issues.

Register for the webinar  

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

SFA Annual Lunch 2015 - don't miss out
 
Friday, 6 November 2015

Join us on Friday, 6 November at the Small Firms Association Annual Lunch, the highlight of the small business calendar.

Network with over 600 attendees, including small business owner-managers, senior government officials and politicians, business journalists and key representatives of larger companies.

The Annual Lunch will take place in the Convention Centre Dublin at 12:30pm. We are delighted that the Governor of the Central Bank of Ireland, Patrick Honohan, will be the Guest of Honour.

It is the biggest business lunch of the year for the small business community and a celebration of the contribution that small businesses make to the Irish economy and society. With over 600 members and guests expected to attend, it represents a fantastic networking opportunity and we would urge all member companies to be represented.

The SFA Annual Lunch is a perfect occasion to bring together your invited guests, special customers, clients or valued employees. The cost for SFA members is €650 + 23% VAT all inclusive for a table of 10. 

Book your place now.

SFA IN THE MEDIA
This Week's Press Coverage

 Budget 2016 was in the media. 


Budget 2016

SFA gained wide media coverage on Budget 2016:

  • SFA issued a press release on 13 October welcoming Budget 2016 as good news for small businesses, read the full press release.
  • SFA Chairman, AJ Noonan was interviewed on Budget Day by UTV, Newstalk, RTE Radio and Today FM. 
  • SFA Director, Patricia Callan gave small businesses reaction to the Budget on RTE's "Prime Time" Budget Special coverage on Budget Day, listen to Part 1 and Part 2
  • On 14 October, SFA reaction to Budget 2016 was covered in the Irish Examiner, Irish Times, Irish Daily Star, Irish Sun and Irish Daily Mirror
  • On 14 October, an opinion piece from SFA Director, Patricia Callan, was published in the Irish Examiner
  • On 16 October SFA Director, Patricia Callan was interviewed on RTE Radio 1 "Today with Sean O'Rourke" and SFA budget reaction featured in the Irish Examiner
  • On 17 October, SFA Director, Patricia Callan participated in the Budget Special of the Small Business Show  on Clare FM
  • On 18 October, SFA provided small business reaction to the Budget in the Sunday Business Post.
Media Request

The Herald are starting a weekly feature profiling businesses in Dublin city centre and would like to invite SFA members to participate. They would like to speak to small businesses in all industries to cover topics including:
  • An overview of the business and what it does: what does it manufacture, what service it provides, etc.
  • How it was started
  • Business plan going forward
  • What issues are most pressing for the business (eg commercial rates, lack of support for startups, poor transport links, etc)
  • Any measures that businesses would like to see implemented. 

If any members are interested in taking part please contact Patricia Callan on tel: 01-605-1602 or e-mail: patricia.callan@sfa.ie.