I’d like to wish you all a belated Happy and prosperous New Year and update you on what has been a particularly busy year for the IDA team on the West Coast.
Ireland’s economy is continuing to perform well. Unemployment and Debt to GDP Ratio are continuing to fall. The European Commission has projected that Ireland will have the fastest growth rate in the EU next year at 3.5%. The ECB’s recent decision to launch a quantitative easing programme should help this growth, as will Ireland’s continued attractiveness as a European hub for US businesses.
Last month our new CEO, Martin Shanahan, announced that total direct employment in IDA companies increased by 7000 to 175,000 in 2014, the highest ever recorded. IDA client companies from the West Coast Half contributed to half of the net gain in employment. During the year the IDA West Coast team secured a record 50 investment projects with expected employment of an additional 5500 jobs. 22 of these companies were investing in Ireland for the first time and the remainder were expansion and R&D projects from existing clients. The vast majority of these projects were from the Technology and Life Science sectors.
The companies that invested for the first time in 2014 included Yelp, who connect consumers with local businesses. Yelp placed their European headquarters in Dublin, creating more than 100 jobs to support their European operations. Calypso Technology, a leading provider of capital markets software solutions, announced plans to establish a 150-person managed services centre in Dublin, while Survey Monkey, the world’s premier online questionnaire platform, established a customer support centre, creating more than 50 new jobs over a 12 month period.
In addition to these first-time investments, the IDA West Coast team worked with a number of companies already located in Ireland on substantial expansions to their existing operations. Airbnb, the world’s leading community-driven hospitality company, doubled the numbers in their Ringsend office last year, bringing their total Irish staff to 200, while Workday, a leader in enterprise cloud applications for human resources and finance, announced a 200 person expansion to their European headquarters in Dublin. Innovative Interfaces, a company specialising in integrated library management and automation software, committed to hiring another 50 staff to add to their customer and technical support, software development, system analysis and finance teams. Towards the end of 2014, Amazon marked their 10 year anniversary of setting up in Ireland with the announcement of 300 new highly-skilled roles, which will be filled on an ongoing basis over the next couple of years.
IDA’s West Coast team also fuelled successes in the regions. Jazz Pharmaceutical announced the construction of a new manufacturing and development facility on a 17-acre site in Monkstown, Co. Roscommon. PayPal announced the creation of an additional 400 jobs at the eBay European Operations Centre in Dundalk, and AlienVault, a computer and network security company, established a new EMEA Sales and Technical Support Centre in Cork, with the aim of creating up to 40 high-tech jobs over 12 months. AMAX, a leading manufacturer of dynamic data centre & cloud, custom server appliance and high performance computing (HPC) solutions, chose Ireland as the location for their European manufacturing facility and logistics hub. This facility, located at Western Business Park in Shannon, will provide 100 jobs over the next five years.
Following a consistently strong performance over recent years, IDA West Coast was approved new resources to drive additional investment and jobs into Ireland. Two of these additional roles, Financial Services –Mountain View and New Forms of FDI- Irvine remain open and we would welcome applications from results-driven business development executives. With the help of the newly expanded team, IDA West Coast is planning to exceed last year’s results, make 2015 our most successful year yet and continue to drive the growth in Ireland’s economy.
As always please feel free to contact me or any member of the West Coast team with any queries or project leads that you might have and help us get the word out that we are open to applications to join the team.
West Coast Director IDA Ireland
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