The growth of e-commerce has helped the growth of businesses generally, particularly 'after hours' business when retailers are not trading on the high street.

One of the world's largest online marketplaces, eBay, has joined forces with Enterprise Ireland and the Design & Crafts Council of Ireland for an initiative that is set to benefit up to 50 small to medium-sized Irish companies with the e-commerce side of their business.

The retail expansion programme, which was launched today in Dublin, has been designed to support local Irish businesses in reaching new domestic and global audiences, opening up opportunities with 179 million buyers across the 190 markets in which eBay operates. 

In 2018, there were 3.7 million listings from Irish professional sellers on eBay, 68% of whom used the marketplace to export.

eBay has partnered with Enterprise Ireland and DCCOI to invite up to 50 businesses from all over Ireland to take part in eBay’s first-ever countrywide retail pilot scheme.  

The new project invites selected small Irish businesses to use as a platform to extend  their customer reach and compete on a global scale. The top counties to which Irish professional sellers on eBay currently export are the UK, Germany, the US, Australia and France but on average, Ireland’s professional sellers export to 12 different markets around the world.

Over the coming 12 months, teams at eBay will provide exclusive support to a select number of Irish SME’s who want to start up or expand their online presence. The scheme is also being supported by We Are Dublin Town.