New Frontiers

New Frontiers at TUS Midlands and Maynooth University

New Frontiers is the national entrepreneurial development programme for ambitious early-stage entrepreneurs with innovative business ideas which have the potential to scale and provide employment. It provides the skills, support, and confidence needed to make the leap to starting a successful business.

New Frontiers is a nationwide Enterprise Ireland programme, co-funded by the European Regional Development Fund under the national Structural and Investment Funds Programmes 2014-2020.

New Frontiers is delivered in the Midlands Mid-East region by Technological University of the Shannon (TUS) in partnership with Maynooth University (MU).

New Frontiers can help you test and develop your business and build a strong case to secure equity investment. The TUS Midlands Maynooth University New Frontiers programme – working in close partnership with the Enterprise Ireland team and the Local Enterprise Offices in the region - has built a reputation for helping start-up ventures to attract investment and move to the next level.

What is New Frontiers?

New Frontiers is an Enterprise Ireland programme aimed at supporting the establishment and growth of technology or knowledge intensive ventures that have the potential to trade internationally and create employment in Ireland.

Phase 1 lasts approximately six weeks and is part-time in nature involving one three hour evening seminar per week for six weeks.

The Phase 1 programme will introduce you to relevant start-up strategies, challenge your business idea and encourage you to demonstrate market validation of your proposed product or service. The goal is to see if you have a viable idea worth taking forward and to learn the fundamentals of entrepreneurship.

Participants who complete Phase 1 will be encouraged to apply for Phase 2 of New Frontiers.

Please note that participation in Phase 1 is not a prerequisite to applying for Phase 2.

Phase 2 includes Enterprise Ireland funding support for each participant, subject to rigorous and frequent assessment of performance and progress. Phase 2 participants, who must be working full-time on their venture, engage in a series of interactive workshops and 1:1 supports addressing all aspects of accelerating the development of their business. Phase 2 participants are provided with start-up facilities in the Midlands Innovation & Research Centre at TUS Midlands or in MaynoothWorks at Maynooth University.

Phase 3 is a period of flexible support, helping successful participants towards investment and expansion.

Applications are now invited for our Phase One programme commencing June 2023

We are now inviting applications for our Phase 1 programme which will commence in early June 2023.

The closing date for submission of applications is 5pm on Wednesday, 31st May 2023.

Places on our Phase 1 programme are limited and shortlisting will apply. 


You are free to save and edit your application right up to submission. 

For more information or if you are having any issues please do not hesitate to contact the New Frontiers team



Who Should Apply to New Frontiers?

Who should apply? This programme can help you if you:

  • Can demonstrate the capability and commitment needed to develop a sustainable business.
  • Are ambitious, intending that your enterprise will achieve turnover greater than €500,000 and create more than five jobs in three to five years.
  • Plan to build your business on a strong foundation of innovation and/or technology.
  • Can provide evidence of a commercial market for your proposed product or service.
  • Propose setting up an enterprise that is a manufacturing or internationally traded services business, or a new domestically traded service business with the potential to trade internationally.

The TUS Midlands Maynooth University New Frontiers programme is open to applications from a diversity of sectors including:

  • Food & consumer products.
  • Information & communication technology.
  • Engineering & electronics.
  • Medical devices.
  • Biotechnology, pharma.
  • Digital media, and
  • Eligible internationally traded services

What does New Frontiers provide entrepreneurs?

  • Training in all areas of business including financial management, market research & validation, business process, business planning, patenting, product development, sales training.
  • Mentoring from experienced business advisers and practitioners.
  • Business incubation facilities in the Midlands Innovation & Research Centre at TUS Midlands or in MaynoothWorks at Maynooth University. 
  • Access to the facilities, R&D resources and expertise of Technological University of the Shannon and Maynooth University.
  • PHASE 2 STIPEND: €15,000 from Enterprise Ireland for individuals participating in Phase 2 (*income tax liability will be the sole responsibility of the participant, and individuals are encouraged to seek professional advice).
  • PHASE 3 STIPEND: €7,500 as an extension for three participants who will continue on the programme for a further 3 months.
  • Networking with other entrepreneurs and business development agencies.
  • Introductions to seed and early stage capital investment networks.
  • Access to entrepreneurship best practice, both national and international.
  • Peer-group learning from participants in the region and across the country.
  • Access to expertise in Enterprise Ireland.

New Frontiers Phases

New Frontiers is a three-phase programme that is designed to provide an integrated and comprehensive set of business development supports to participants.

Phase 1 - Testing Phase 2 - Developing Phase 3 - Implementing
Purpose Purpose Purpose

knowledge & skills to test business idea

Intensive development of

the promoter and business proposition

Determine viability of the


  Developing and testing the

Business Model

Pursue funding opportunities
  Learning to pitch the


  Developing an investable

business plan

Commitment Commitment Commitment
Part-time Full-time Ongoing
6 Weeks 6 months 3 months


€2,500/month* €2,500/month
Output Output Output

of promoters for intensive planning phase

Fully explored business


Sustainable business
  Viable and tested business model Entry to EI or CEB process where


  Milestone-based implementation

plan and business plan



Phase 1 - Testing the business

The first phase will be part-time over an 8-10 week period and will help you to validate the market potential of your business idea. These weekend and evening workshops will provide information and general start-up training, allowing you to tease out the feasibility of your business idea and to see whether a viable proposition exists.

Phase 2 - Planning the business

Following a competitive selection process, committed participants who have a strong value proposition and can demonstrate that their business proposition has potential to grow and create jobs may be offered a place on Phase 2.

If successful, you will receive intensive support for six months to develop both your own skills and to work up your business proposition. This will entail full-time participation in workshops, mentoring and regular reviews. Using these supports, you will fully detail and validate your business proposition and identify potential customers, sales channels and funding options.

You must be available for full-time participation. To facilitate this, you will receive up to €15,000 in funding subject to satisfactory development reviews (*income tax liability will be the sole responsibility of the participant, and individuals are encouraged to seek professional advice on this).

The aim of this phase is to support you in your development of an investor-ready business proposition.

Phase 3 - Developing the business

On the basis of their potential to develop sales and/or secure investment, no more than three businesses emerging from Phase 2 will then be guided to the government supports that can best help them at their particular stage of development. To facilitate this, you will receive up to an additional €7,500 in funding. Further incubation facilities and support may be available to participants for a limited period.

New Frontiers Success Stories

View videos of New Frontiers success stories