Monday 25th April 2022 - An Tánaiste Leo Varadkar T.D., is embarking on an IDA Ireland/Enterprise Ireland trade & investment mission to the West Coast of the US today.  The Tánaiste will be accompanied by IDA Ireland CEO Martin Shanahan and Enterprise Ireland CEO Leo Clancy.
The US continues to be the largest single investor in Ireland and IDA Ireland has had a presence on the West Coast for over 40 years.  Irish origin companies employ 100,000 people in the US, with over 10,000 of those in California & Washington State, supported by Enterprise Ireland’s West Coast presence in San Francisco and Seattle. Ireland is the 9th largest source of US FDI.

Over the course of the week, as part of the joint mission An Tánaiste will meet with some of IDA’s largest existing clients in Seattle, Silicon Valley and San Francisco, where he will also be joined by a number of Enterprise Ireland clients, led by Enterprise Ireland’s CEO, Leo Clancy. The delegation will also meet with potential clients where senior executives from IDA Ireland will detail the unique advantages of locating in Ireland to service a European marketplace of 450 million people.
As part of the mission, An Tánaiste will also present IDA Ireland’s Special Recognition Award to Google CEO, Sundar Pichai on Wednesday (27th) at a special IDA Ireland event at Google’s Sunnyvale Campus in California. This is the second Special Recognition Award given by IDA Ireland, which recognises investor commitment to Ireland. Google has expanded its EU Headquarters in Ireland rapidly over nearly 20 years. This event will also recognise the significant contribution that Google Ireland has made in supporting the SME eco system in Ireland. The company has over 8,000 employees in Ireland.
An Tánaiste will also attend Enterprise Ireland meetings over the course of the week, including;

  • Cybersecurity roundtable sessions with Enterprise Ireland clients and leading US cyber security companies

  • Meeting with key venture capital leaders in Silicon Valley.

  • A meeting with Technology Industry executives, focusing on senior female leaders in the Bay Area, organised in conjunction with colleagues at the Irish Consulate in San Francisco led by Consul General Robert O’Driscoll.

  • Meetings with Enterprise Ireland clients and US-based companies, including Intuition, Starcircle, Utmost, and Taoglas. 

Key sectors of focus for Enterprise Ireland during the mission include Cyber Security, Life Sciences and ICT. These are sectors with significant Irish company capability depth, and sectors that have seen steep growth in the US over the past 2 years.
The Tánaiste will also officially open the new Enterprise Ireland office, which is now located in Ireland House San Francisco.
An Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said “This trade mission is a really good opportunity to meet personally with some of the biggest technology leaders in the world. The companies we are meeting collectively employ over 30,000 people across Ireland. We do not and cannot take this commitment for granted. We are constantly looking at ways we can grow jobs and investment in every county in the country, as part of our commitment to have 2.5m people at work by 2024, which would be the highest level of employment in the history of the state. 
“We’ve a full agenda, visiting Seattle, LA and San Francisco, focusing on technology companies investing in Ireland, as well as several meetings with indigenous Irish companies, hopefully opening up opportunities for them to grow and invest in America, creating jobs both in the U.S. and at home.
“This trade mission is about attracting jobs and investment to every part of Ireland and I’m looking forward to what I hope will be a very fruitful trip.”
The IDA Ireland companies an Tánaiste will meet are mainly in the technology and business services sectors.

The companies -

  • Employ over 30,000 people directly in Ireland with associated spin off benefits in the wider Irish economy

  • Have total annual revenues of over $1.4 trillion.

Commenting on the investment mission:
Martin Shanahan, CEO, IDA Ireland said “As part of this investment mission, we will be meeting with some of the largest and most dynamic companies in the world of technology and business services.  These companies continue to seek stable, pro-business locations for their businesses. This week is about deepening our relationships at the highest levels, and convincing new targets that Ireland is the place for their investment.
As we emerge from Covid travel restrictions, the importance of connecting in-person has never been stronger. This programme will remind investors of Ireland’s many advantages across talent, track record and access to the European market. As I have said many times before, competition for foreign investment has never been as intense and investment missions increase awareness of Ireland’s attractiveness as a place to invest.
“IDA Ireland is particularly glad to be able to recognise Google’s contribution to Ireland over the last 20 years through our Special Recognition Award. The purpose of this award is to highlight investor commitment and contribution to Ireland over many years. Google’s rapid expansion in Ireland is testament to the quality of the workforce available here.
“Investment from this part of the world continues to perform extremely well. In 2021, a total of 58 investments were secured from West Coast companies, accounting for 23% of the total number of investments into Ireland last year,” concluded Martin Shanahan.
Top tier global companies such as Intel, Google, Salesforce, Microsoft, Amazon and many others have invested in and continue to expand in Ireland.  Today, there are close to 250 West Coast headquartered companies operating in Ireland, employing in excess of 69,000 people – one quarter of total employment by IDA clients.
Leo Clancy, CEO, Enterprise Ireland said:
“With San Francisco known as the digital capital of the world and Seattle as the cloud capital, naturally the focus of the trade mission is on Ireland’s strength in key digital technology sectors.
The US is Ireland’s largest single export market for goods and Enterprise Ireland’s six offices across the United States continue to support Irish companies as they expand their reach into these markets and accelerate an export-led recovery for Irish business.
Irish companies continue to expand and grow their US footprint and investments, adding an additional 65 new presences in the US in 2021.

This trade mission builds upon Enterprise Ireland’s in-market support for Irish companies growing their businesses in the United States, particularly along the West Coast and will deliver new opportunities in important, growing sectors including digital tech, med tech and fin tech.”