The tech industry in Ireland is booming and showing no signs of slowing down. Recent research suggests that 72,864 new job openings will become available in Ireland by 2022 for people with high-level IT skills.
As well as Ireland’s own indigenous tech sector, another reason for the growth could be attributed to the number of UK firms choosing to set up operations in Ireland, amid Brexit uncertainties. Irishjobs.ie noted a 34% increase in UK-based applicants for Irish jobs in 2018 compared to the previous year, with the biggest increase in technology roles, at an increase of 47%. IDA figures published on January 3 recorded 55 significant Brexit-related investments by multinationals in Ireland last year, creating more than 4,500 jobs. Ireland is also still viewed as the destination of choice for many expanding US entities.
As well as access to the EU single market, Ireland offers some other benefits including being the only English-speaking country in the EU, well-paid jobs, a world-renowned education system, a low corporate tax rate of just 12.5%, and the Euro currency, meaning there are no exchange fees when dealing with most EU countries.
Where are the most popular tech locations in Ireland?
Being the capital of Ireland, Dublin is the obvious choice for tech companies and professionals. The capital has more than 70,000 people employed in technology and boasts being home to the EMEA headquarters of multinationals such as Google, Facebook and LinkedIn, just to name a few. IT companies alone take 40% of the office space in Dublin, placing it in the top three of EMEA Tech Cluster Rankings by CBRE and the number one location for digital companies.
However, over the last few years, rising living costs and the ongoing accommodation crisis means that tech companies are considering locating further afield to more regional locations.
Moving to the West coast of Ireland, Galway is becoming more popular as people move away from the issues associated with Dublin. It is home to 105 tech companies, 15 of which are led by female founders. Some of the key tech companies in Galway includes BriteBiz, Alison, TR3Dent, Orreco, 9th Impact and PipIT.
New data from TechIreland shows that Cork is producing the most tech startups in Ireland. The Republic of Work’s CEO, DC Cahalane said “there’s definitely a renaissance afoot in Cork. A lot of new businesses are starting, and you can feel a lot more positivity around.” In terms of the volume of tech companies, 142 are based in Cork, 26 of which are led by female founders. According to data produced by TechIreland, 25 firms raised €22.8m between them last year.
Tech companies in Cork are particularly active in security, artificial intelligence (AI), internet of things (IoT), software as a service (SaaS) and medtech. The main companies operating in Cork include Teamwork, Helixworks and AventaMed.
Limerick has 63 tech companies, 12 of which have female founders. Limerick received the majority share of funding in 2017, with €72.7m raised by seven companies. Although they have fewer companies than Cork, they raised more funding.
Limerick currently has a particularly strong presence in enterprise, green energy, IoT and medtech. Some of the key names include Arralis, Teckro, BHSL Hydro and Altra Tech.
Ireland’s South-East is a haven for tech innovation, driven by the efforts of local entrepreneurs and the Waterford Institute of Technology. The founder of Suir Valley Ventures and Chair of TSSG, Barry Downes, said that “Waterford became one of the few cities in Ireland to have a startup incubator for tech (ArcLabs), an accelerator (NDRC), a venture capital company (Suir Valley Ventures) and a company to promote tech (Crystal Valley Tech)”.
Waterford boasts 26 local tech companies, two of which have female founders. The most notable tech players in Waterford includes NearForm, Immersive VR Education and Kyckr.
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Written by Michelle Young