In its pre-Budget 2023 submission, Digital Business Ireland is seeking a €10 million fund to help Irish businesses take advantage of the newest iteration of the internet.

Digital Business Ireland (DBI), the country’s leading representative body for online businesses, has highlighted how Web 3.0 has the potential to unlock new ways of doing business, and build better customer experiences. It provides faster, more relevant data to end users and allows people to own and trade elements of the internet, from crypto currencies to NFTs. The representative body notes that the country’s status as a global tech hub provides fertile ground for internet innovation.

The development of a national strategy for Web 3.0 can help to unlock new ways of doing business, while empowering SMEs to build better customer experiences through their online stores. Included as part of its pre-Budget 2023 submission, the representative body made a number of recommendations to Government, which, if implemented, will harness Ireland’s status as a leading digital hub, and place the country at the forefront of new and emerging internet technologies.

Detailed in its submission to the Department of Finance, DBI has recommended the following;

● The introduction of a national Web 3.0 strategy, devised following a public consultation

● A dedicated €10 million fund to propel businesses to transition to the newest iteration of e-commerce

● The implementation of a targeted information campaign to educate businesses on the opportunities presented by Web 3.0

Given that the digital economy is set to be the dominant driver of Ireland’s growth in the years ahead, and in light of the Government’s considerable €85 million investment in digitalisation and artificial intelligence under the Digital Transition Fund, DBI contends that Ireland is uniquely positioned to harness the opportunities presented by the emergence of Web 3.0.

In addition to its recommendation on the need for a national strategy, the representative body has urged the Government to build on its longstanding commitment to encouraging enterprise growth and introduce dedicated funding and targeted information campaigns to support businesses in transitioning to the newest iteration of the internet. Unlike previous versions of the web, Web 3.0 allows individuals to own and trade elements of the internet, effectively creating a decentralised model, and granting control back to the end-user. On a practical level, Web 3.0 processes data at an increased pace; creating customised content, designed according to consumers’ behaviour and patterns of consumption. This has clear benefits for businesses, who will be able to provide their patrons with a bespoke, personalised customer experience, where products and services of interest will be more easily accessible. In addition, the integration of blockchain technology will safeguard users’ data, while building trust and transparency and providing cost savings, owing to improved efficiencies.

Speaking today, Chairperson of Digital Business Ireland, Ashley McDonnell said: “At DBI, we are proud to partner with many of Ireland’s most cutting-edge digital suppliers who sit at the cusp of change; at the apex of advancement. From engagement with our members, it is evident that many businesses are enthusiastic about the prospect of new and emerging technologies; but naturally, need support on how best to optimise the opportunities that will arise. The future of the internet is boundless, and Web 3.0 will enable businesses of all sizes to provide tailored experiences to their customers; while transforming the ways in which we work, meet and do business.

The substantial funding allocated to digital transformation projects on behalf of the Government, combined with Ireland’s status as a global tech hub, means that we already possess a lot of the infrastructure needed to leverage the full potential of Web 3.0 and digital assets, more broadly. As part of DBI’s pre-Budget 2023 submission, we are calling on the Government to work in partnership with industry, and other stakeholders to develop a national strategy for Web 3.0, to include targeted funding to support businesses as they make the transition to the latest iteration of e-commerce. Building better customer experiences, and improving interactions for all users will propel business growth, and unlock new market opportunities – and devising a fully-funded national strategy that enables and empowers businesses to be ahead of the curve, is a crucial component of this”.



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