Enter the Eurozone.

Export Strategy | International Marketing | Market Entry Strategy

Who took part?

102 ambitious companies.

Typically 2 people from each company, operating at a senior decision making level in the business.


The programme is run over 4 months.

The first programme was held from September 2019 – January 2020. The fifth and most recent programme took place from March to June 2022.

What was the purpose of the Programme?

The primary aim of the programme is to assist Irish companies to develop a market entry strategy for a new Eurozone market.

During the 4-month programme participants also gained:

  • 5 days of Executive Education from ESMT Berlin (one of the top 7 business schools in Europe).
  • 1-1 mentoring from a dedicated business advisor to help put the theory from the education elements into practice for their unique business circumstances.

What types of companies and sectors where represented?

The programme is aimed at SMEs who may not have the experience or skills in entering a new international market before, or who wish to enter a Eurozone market for the first time. The programme was also designed as a support to companies with a UK Brexit risk who needed to diversify their export markets.

The programme is open to all sectors which fall under the remit of Enterprise Ireland.



A diverse range of companies covering a variety of industries, products and services have journeyed through this programme:

  • Ecommerce solutions
  • Renewable technologies
  • Engineering
  • Financial services
  • Home and Garden Products
  • Laboratory services
  • Telecommunications
  • Retail Products
  • Project Management & Professional Services
  • Manufacturing

Which countries were targeted?

Participants were encourages to choose one Eurozone country to focus on. Markets chosen to date include:

  • Netherlands
  • Belgium
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Spain
  • France
  • Portugal
  • Finland
  • Denmark
  • Switzerland
  • Poland





What were the results?

The goal for each company on the programme is that they are positioned to win their first customer in the Eurozone within 6 to 9 months of programme completion.

Given the diverse range of industries, success varies from one company to the next based on the sales cycles of the business (e.g. software versus manufacturing, B2B versus B2C), how mature is the product being taken to market, and other factors.

  • Several of the companies had a “rethink” of their initial export plan as a result of the strategy-first approach


  • In all cases, the combination of the executive education and 1-1 mentoring elevated the strategic skills of the participants, and each company walked away from the programme with an in-depth assessment of its target market as well as a strategic methodology, tools and set of skills for any future market entry.

25% of companies

achieved commercial success by the completion of the programme and were well ahead of the expectations set. This percentage would have almost certainly been higher but for the onset of COVID-19 in 2020.

These successes include the recruitment of sales partners, initial customer contracts and in some cases, the opening of a local office in their target market


All 102 companies

developed market entry strategies within 4 months

International recognition for ‘Enter-the-Eurozone’

In May 2020, it was announced that ‘Enter-the-Eurozone’ had won the ‘Excellence in Practice Silver Award’ from the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD).

This award was made jointly to Enterprise Ireland, ESMT, and IMS Marketing, and is considered one of the most prestigious international awards in learning and development. The award was achieved in the Ecosystem Development category for work on ‘Focusing the response of Irish business to Brexit’.

Apply Now

The Enter the Eurozone Programme typically runs twice per year.

Learn more about this exciting programme and how your company can establish a presence in the Eurozone.