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Irish Government agrees additional measures to support SMEs

The Irish Government has announced new measures to reduce costs for small and mediumsized businesses. There will be a second Increased Cost of Business (ICOB) grant payment for businesses in the retail and hospitality sectors, which includes the hair and personal grooming industry.

The Government has also pledged to widen the eligibility for the Trading Online Voucher Scheme and Digital for Business Consultancy Scheme, extending both to all sectors with up to 50 employees; launch the online National Enterprise Hub for SMEs to access information on Government support; review ESRI research on the impact of statutory sick leave before deciding on any further increases; and review the proposed Roadmap for Increasing Minimum Annual Remuneration Thresholds for Employment Permits.

Meanwhile, the employer PRSI threshold is to increase from €441 to €496, with effect from 1 October 2024. According to the Government, this will ensure that employers with staff working full time on the national minimum wage will not be required to pay the higher rate of employer PRSI of 11.05%, and will instead pay the lower rate of 8.8%.

Work continues on National Barbering Apprenticeship development

The Barber Society of Ireland recently took part in a peer review with Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board (ETB) and the Hair and Beauty Industry Confederation (Habic), as well as representatives and educators from the barbering industry.

The review, which took place in the Athlone Springs Hotel in Co Roscommon, was centred on the ongoing development of the National Barbering Apprenticeship, which Limerick and Clare ETB was given approval to begin work on last year.

“We had two fantastic days at the peer review,” said a Barber Society of Ireland spokesperson. “Working together, we had some engaging discussions on module development and calendar schedules for the National Barbering Apprenticeship. It’s shaping up to be a fantastic programme.”

BPerfect Cosmetics opens revamped flagship megastore in Belfast

BPerfect Cosmetics has opened its revamped megastore in CastleCourt Shopping Centre in Belfast.

The new outlet features hair and scalp diagnostics cameras to create tailored haircare regimes, while customers can also avail of make-up, eyebrow waxing and lamination, and tanning appointments.

In addition, BPerfect Cosmetics has announced its partnership with Aeracha Uladh GAC, Ulster's first LGBTQIA+ inclusive GAA team, and Glentoran Women’s FC.

“We are thrilled to partner with Aeracha Uladh GAC and Glentoran FC as we continue our mission to champion diversity and create spaces where everyone feels valued and accepted, ensuring that regardless of background, gender, identity or ability, everyone has a seat at the table,” said BPerfect Cosmetics CEO Brendan McDowell.

“Our partnerships are about fostering a culture where differences are celebrated and embraced. We hope to inspire others to join us in building a more inclusive society.”


■ Voduz’s Denise Phillips has been announced as an EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Ireland finalist in the Emerging category. Phillips founded Voduz in 2019, with the company offering a range of hair products and tools, which are stocked in a number of salons around Ireland. Phillips also owns Pelo Hairdressing, which has branches in Dublin; Belfast; Newbridge, Co Kildare; and Tullow, Co Carlow. Posting on social media, she said she was excited to be a finalist. “I am going to take this opportunity with both hands and give it my everything,” she added. This year’s finalists will engage in a strategic growth programme over a 10-month period, which includes a week-long chief executive retreat in Cape Town, South Africa.

■ Seabody has entered into a partnership with Easanna Wellness & Spa in Sheen Falls Lodge in Kenmare, Co Kerry. Seabody is an all-Irish circular health and beauty brand. Based in Tralee, Co Kerry, its marine plant-based skincare and supplements are powered by marine molecules, which the company has sustainably isolated from Irish organic seaweed, using clean zero waste technologies. The brand made its spa debut last year when it partnered with The Castle Spa at Dromoland Castle in Co Clare. “As a fellow Kerry-based luxury brand, we are thrilled to have partnered with Sheen Falls Lodge to highlight our shared values on the customer journey, excellence and sustainability,” said co-founder of Seabody Dr Helena McMahon.

■ Irish actress Alison Oliver joined forces with Irish make-up brand Sculpted by Aimee for her appearance at the recent Met Gala in New York. Oliver is known for her roles in Conversations with Friends and Saltburn, and is set to star with Jude Law in upcoming film The Order. “We were thrilled to collaborate with Alison Oliver at the Met Gala,” said Sculpted by Aimee founder Aimee Connolly. “It’s a testament to our commitment to innovation and quality in beauty. We’re ready to shine bright alongside Alison and showcase the power of Sculpted by Aimee on the world stage.”

This article appears in the JULY/AUGUST 2024 Issue of Professional Beauty & HJ Ireland

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This article appears in the JULY/AUGUST 2024 Issue of Professional Beauty & HJ Ireland