SED Fund

Social Enterprise Development Fund has re-opened for a second year.

Social Enterprise Development Fund has re-opened for a second year.

The Social Enterprise Development Fund is a €1.6 million fund which will be delivered over two years; 2018 – 2020. The fund was created by Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI) in partnership with Local Authorities Ireland and is funded by IPB Insurance and the Department of Rural and Community Development. The Department of Rural and Community Development provides match funding for all funds raised by Social Innovation Fund Ireland, through the Dormant Accounts Fund

The objective of the fund is to find and back social enterprises that have developed a project that will add to the social and economic fabric of their community by way of social impact. The fund will provide critical support to the most innovative and impactful projects proposed by social enterprises across Ireland.



In 2019, the fund will support up to 16 Social Enterprises with cash grants and a place on the Accelerator Programme.

  • Two Social Enterprises will receive a cash grant of €50,000
  • Two Social Enterprises will receive a cash grant of €30,000
  • Two Social Enterprises will receive a cash grant of €20,000
  • Ten Social Enterprises will receive a cash grant of €10,000

The grants will be awarded to the best social enterprises in each of the following categories:

  • Best Social Enterprise - Urban
  • Best Social Enterprise - Town
  • Best Social Enterprise - Rural

A minimum of three winners will come from each of the categories.


All successful applicants will win a place on Ireland’s only National Accelerator Programme specifically designed for social enterprises.  The Accelerator Programme will equip social enterprises with the skills they need to scale up and deepen their social impact.

This intensive and practical 6-month programme provides training from best-in-class experts in the private, non-profit and public sector on key functions such as Strategic Planning, Impact Measurement, Financial Management, Governance, Business Modelling, Pitching, Storytelling and more.  The Accelerator Programme also includes the financing of bespoke business and mentoring supports tailored to the needs of each organisation, such as market research, marketing plans and online impact strategies.


This year, Social Innovation Fund Ireland have introduced an exciting new element to the Fund.  At the close of the Accelerator Programme, each participating social enterprise will have the opportunity to pitch for a share of a €100,000 cash grant.

This further investment will be granted to the social enterprises which demonstrate the greatest potential for future impact and growth.


We are seeking applications from social enterprises that:

  • Have a clear social mission that addresses a critical social issue
  • Generate income from goods or services
  • Are already up and running
  • Reinvest any surplus into achieving their mission
  • Have a not-for-profit legal form
  • Are separate from government and state agencies
  • Have their s its main impact in the Republic of Ireland


The Social Enterprise Development Fund has been streamlined in order to allow for a more efficient open-call for applications.  This year the open-call comprises of two stages:

Stage 1

Applications are open from the 15th November until the 25th January.  At this point, applicants are invited to complete a short application form.  Based on this initial form, Social Innovation Fund Ireland will identify a shortlist of applicants who will be invited to submit further information.

Stage 2

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to complete a more detailed application form on request.  The submission deadline for the second stage of the application is 28th February 2019.