Minister Mitchell-O’Connor on 5-day, 2-city, investment & marketing programme to west coast USA


Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor T.D is currently on a 5-day IDA Ireland investment and marketing programme to the West Coast of the USA.

This visit will include one-on-one meetings with 11 companies considering new job-creation projects in Ireland. This is Minister Mitchell-O’Connor’s first major investment and marketing visit to the US since her appointment.

The Minister is accompanied by IDA Ireland Chief Executive Martin Shanahan on the visit to San Francisco and Los Angeles, which involves a total of 13 meetings and events. These include 11 one-on-one meetings with target and client companies considering new job-creation projects in Ireland. These 11 companies, mainly in the financial services, technology and life sciences sectors:

•Employ approximately 360,000 people globally
•Have total annual revenues of over $450billion
•Include multimillion dollar established companies as well as newer companies
•Include companies that already employ thousands of people in Ireland but are considering new investments, as well as companies considering locating operations here for the first time

The programme also includes an Enterprise Ireland networking event and an IDA Ireland client function.

Speaking before departing, Minister Mitchell-O’Connor said:

“This Government is committed to attracting more international companies to invest in Ireland. During this busy week I will be meeting 11 companies from a wide range of sectors that are considering creating new jobs in Ireland. When I meet senior executives from multinationals like these, they are highly impressed by what Ireland has to offer as a gateway to a European market. They are interested to hear about Ireland’s skilled workforce, our pro-business environment, our tax offering, our base of multinationals already here, and about developments that may affect our relationship with Europe such as Brexit. I look forward to communicating the clear message that Ireland is open for business and open for investment. I am confident that the discussions held this week will lead to jobs being created in the near future in cities and towns right across the country.”

ACI Worldwide Opens State-of-the-Art European Data Centre


New Limerick data centre accommodates growing EMEA demand for ACI’s Universal Payments solutions; also brings 50 new jobs

LIMERICK, IRELAND—October 17, 2016—ACI Worldwide (NASDAQ: ACIW), a leading global provider of real-time electronic payment and banking solutions, today announced the opening of its new European data centre. Located in Limerick, this state-of-the-art facility delivers the utmost in reliability, security and data privacy, further expanding world-class payments solution capabilities and capacity for European customers, comprising some of largest merchants, intermediaries and financial institutions, including the two biggest banks in Ireland.

In order to accommodate growing EMEA demand, the new fully redundant data centre was built and launched in record time, and meets the most stringent security and compliance standards. Moreover, it further leverages ACI’s product investments to make its Universal Payments solutions available to European companies through ACI’s private cloud.

The facility also brings job growth to the region. In partnership with IDA Ireland, ACI will add 50 new hires, on top of the current team of nearly 100. The company has had a presence in Limerick for ten years, cultivating strong talent as part of its long-standing internship program and collaboration with the University of Limerick.

To commemorate the data centre opening, ACI today welcomed senior dignitaries from across the country to visit the facility. Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O Connor T.D. warmly welcomed the investment by ACI. “This new project, involving the construction of a new data centre in Limerick, is exactly the type of value added project we are pursuing. Hosting a data centre is a commitment for the long-term, given the scale of the capital investment involved. Ireland has attracted data centres from virtually all the major players over recent years and this is testament to Ireland and our agencies involved. ACI’s commitment is a great vote of confidence in both the infrastructure and skills available in the region. I wish ACI and its team continued success.”

The Minister for Finance Michael Noonan T.D. said: “I’m delighted to see ACI cementing its presence in the Limerick region with the addition of this data centre. A further 50 jobs and increased physical infrastructure is testament to ACI’s confidence in Limerick and its highly skilled workforce. As Minister for Finance, I have championed electronic payments and have overseen a move in Ireland toward more efficient and convenient uses of electronic payments. I am a firm believer in the work that ACI is doing and I am grateful to see that they are a firm believer in the people of Limerick and the broader region.”

Also speaking at the event, Minister for Employment and Small Business Pat Breen T.D. commented: “This is another very welcome announcement for the region and follows on from other recent significant announcements for Limerick. All jobs created have a positive knock on effect on the wider region. It is important that we continue to pursue opportunities for investment and job creation across all rural Ireland. Once again this investment is a testament to the skilled workforce and the attractiveness of the region. I wish the team at ACI every success for the future.”

IDA CEO Martin Shanahan said: “It is great to see this company, which has been extremely successful in Ireland and across Europe, continue to grow and develop its operations here in Limerick. Supporting established companies like ACI is a key focus for IDA. The addition of this new data centre confirms ACI’s ongoing commitment to the region, and its continued growth presents further employment opportunities for the great pool of talent in Limerick and the wider region. I wish ACI continued success here.”

“We are very excited about our new European data centre and the tremendous overall opportunities for ACI in the region, which is testament to our great team and our powerful Universal Payments offerings,” said Phil Heasley, president and CEO, ACI Worldwide. “As more organizations embrace private cloud solutions to gain a competitive edge, they’re turning to ACI; our dedicated cloud payments offerings provide the security, privacy and reliability that customers need and expect from mission-critical payment solutions.”

ACI provides world-class electronic payments, banking, and fraud protection solutions and services to more than 4,600 financial institutions, retailers, and billers around the world through a private cloud, processing more than 35 million transactions per day

Trusource Labs to establish International Operations Centre in Limerick, creating 134 jobs

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor today announced that Technical Support Services company Trusource Labs is to establish an International Operations Centre in Limerick, creating 134 jobs over three years.

The project is supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation through IDA Ireland.

Trusource Labs is headquartered in Austin, Texas. The privately held company services technology companies that specialise in the Internet of Things and providing support for companies that use Apple devices.

The company delivers innovative solutions for connected devices and business critical software solutions by providing an effortless technology support experience that strengthens customer relationships. Services focus on minimising the need for customers to phone for technical support, including working with companies and their engineers when products are at beta stage and focusing on ways to enhance the customer’s experience from purchase, installation and activation of the product or service. The company helps develop content online and ‘in the box’ for troubleshooting, providing omni-channel support with phone, email, social, chat and video in multiple languages.

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor said: “This is another great boost for Limerick and the region. I am delighted to be in Limerick again today to welcome a further 134 jobs to the city and the region. As Minister my priority is to ensure continued jobs creation right across the country. These are exactly the kind of high quality technical jobs that we seek to attract and it is a strong vote of confidence for Ireland and the Irish workforce that Trusource Labs has decided to establish its International Operations Centre here. I wish the Trusource Labs team all the very best for their future in Ireland.”

The company’s Co-Founder Alton Martin said: ‘We are enthusiastic to bring our innovative customer experience model to Ireland. It is our first step in a larger global growth plan, and we are grateful for IDA’s partnership and support.”

IDA’s CEO Martin Shanahan said: “This investment by Trusource Labs is great news. Delivering 134 jobs in three years will make a strong regional impact in Limerick and will be a valuable reference case for IDA in attracting similar high growth technology companies to the region. I congratulate the company and offer the continued support of IDA Ireland in the future.”
For information on the new roles go to:

Live Register falls below 300,000 for the first time since economic crash


New CSO figures showing that the Live Register has fallen below 300,000 for the first time since 2008 have been welcomed by Minister for Social Protection Leo Varadkar and Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor.

Now standing at 286,490, the unadjusted Live Register has dropped below 300,000 for the first time since September 2008, exactly eight years ago. This is a year on year decrease of 13.92%. It’s further evidence that good progress is being made in tackling joblessness and helping people back into work.

Minister Varadkar said: “Three major milestones have now been passed, with the Live Register falling below 300,000, unemployment falling from its peak of 15% to below 8%, and the number of people employed exceeding two million, all for the first time in eight years.

“Since coming to Government we have essentially halved unemployment, and my objective for the next few years is to halve it again. And I can now say with certainty that we will exceed our target for 2016 to reduce the number of people in long-term unemployment by 20,000.

“However, as unemployment goes down it gets harder to keep bringing it down. As indicated earlier this week, my target is to bring unemployment down to between 5% and 6% and long-term unemployment to 2.5%.

“We will do this through activation measures like: one-to-one engagements with jobseekers; making work pay through sustainable wage increases, effective tax reductions and new social insurance measures like paternity benefit; promoting financial supports like JobsPlus and the Wage Subsidy Scheme; developing an Action Plan for Jobless Households; reforming existing work schemes like Community Enterprise and Tus; using incentives like JobsWeek to match jobseekers with employers; and developing initiatives across the whole of Government in education, training, housing and childcare.”

Minister Mitchell O’Connor said: “Every job is vital and getting the Live Register figure below 300,000 is a major milestone. It follows the most recent employment figures which show that now 2million people are at work for the first time since 2008. Employment has increased in every region – in some places more than others but every part of Ireland has seen employment levels improve from their lowest points.

“Later this month I will be finalising regional jobs reports and they will demonstrate that in all but two regions – the South-East and the Midlands, employment levels are within 1% of the national average.

Every job is precious. Every job created has a real effect on men, women, and children and the wider community. It gives people self-respect, dignity and enables them to support their family and have a better quality of life. That is why we cannot be complacent about job creation, but I am happy to report that there has been a momentum of job creation announcements in recent weeks and months throughout our regions. I want to ensure that this continues, creating the right environment for job growth right across the country in all areas of Ireland is my key priority and these live register figures issued today by the CSO show they are going in the right direction but we must continue as a Government to work hard to ensure that this continues.”

Top Irish exporters meet to plan their post Brexit strategies at International Markets Week


Almost nine out of ten Irish companies plan to extend into new international markets over the next 12 months according to a new survey by Enterprise Ireland, the state agency responsible for helping companies to grow their exports internationally.

More than 140 international Market Advisors from over 30 Enterprise Ireland overseas offices have returned home to assist over 400 client companies with developing new global export plans in the context of Brexit during the week.

The survey results were announced this morning at International Markets Week 2016 in Dublin’s RDS where the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny TD officially launched Enterprise Ireland’s Global Ambition campaign.

Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD said: “I have been greatly encouraged by Enterprise Ireland’s immediate reaction to the UK referendum – contacting clients, setting up a helpline and publishing a comprehensive guide for Exporters to the UK. This week is all about exports, encouraging more Irish companies to export internationally and to scale globally.

By utilising the expertise of experienced Market Advisors, all the companies attending International Markets Week will get the best possible advice for optimising their export plans”.

According to the results of the survey of 356 companies registered to attend International Markets Week:

The top 3 export target markets are USA/Canada, Northern Europe and the United Kingdom.
• These market regions are closely followed by Southern Europe/Middle East/Africa, Asia and Central Europe/Eastern Europe/CIS and Russia.
• Nearly one in five companies with global expansion plans indicated an interest in Latin America.
• Four out of five companies are active in the UK market.
• Eighty percent of those active in the UK said they plan to deepen their involvement in the UK market.

Speaking at the International Markets Week Breakfast Briefing, the Taoiseach said: “Enterprise Ireland has been proactive in assisting exporters. Staff from their overseas offices have travelled home from four corners of the world to meet with hundreds of Irish exporters who are making their plans for the next year and beyond. This is an important event, particularly in the context of the UK’s decision to leave the EU which poses new challenges for Irish exporters. The new Global Ambition campaign launched today reinforces Enterprise Ireland’s work to encourage more exporters to scale up their export plans and advise those considering international expansion”.

Julie Sinnamon, CEO, Enterprise Ireland said: “Today’s survey results reflect that Irish companies have ambitious plans for their future exports and they’re not afraid to travel far and wide. But we need to continue to drive the ambition of Irish exporters, especially in the aftermath of Brexit and now that we have a clear indication on the timing of Article 50.

“That’s why today we are launching our new Global Ambition initiative to encourage, educate and enable exporters to develop their export plans and expand on a significant international scale. The campaign features the stories of ambitious, successful Irish exporters and is part of Enterprise Ireland’s response to the UK Referendum result.

“Through our expertise and overseas network, Enterprise Ireland is identifying options in all international markets. Our intention is to work with companies to drive their innovation and competitiveness and create companies of scale at an international level”.

To open International Markets Week to clients, a panel of experts participated in a Breakfast Briefing alongside Government Ministers to discuss what it takes to secure and optimise the global future of Irish companies in a time of change, under the theme of “Succeeding Globally – Brexit Challenges and Opportunities”.

Casa Systems Establishes International Operations in Limerick


Casa Systems, Inc. (Casa), a worldwide leader in next-generation ultra-broadband access technology, announced today that it has established international operations in Limerick, creating 50+ new jobs over 3 years. The move will allow the company to support its continued growth internationally, bringing it closer to its European customers and acting as a base for non-US activity. Initial operations will include manufacturing, distribution, customer technical support and related activities. The company is also evaluating the potential for research & development opportunities in the future.

Welcoming today’s announcement, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor said: “This is a very exciting project and I am delighted that we are attracting cutting edge technology companies to regional locations and that Limerick will benefit from 50 quality jobs. This follows on from recent jobs announcements which show that there is a momentum growing for Jobs in regions around Ireland. Ireland’s growing expertise in the ICT sector and our commitment to ensuring that we can provide the requisite skills for companies like Casa Systems is clear for all to see. This company’s expertise is at the forefront of broadband developments and I wish the team at Casa the very best with their ongoing success in Ireland.”

The project is supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation through IDA Ireland.

The company will be located in the National Technology Park in Limerick, with close proximity to the University of Limerick.

Casa, a leading provider of fixed, mobile and Wi-Fi network solutions for ultra-broadband services, develops, manufactures and markets devices to enable cable operators to fully utilise interactive digital video and broadband IP services over cable networks. The company also develops edge solutions to address a variety of fixed and mobile converged solutions.

“Casa is very excited to establish operations in Limerick,” said Lucy Xie, Senior Vice President of Operations for Casa. “Workforce talent is always a key factor when selecting a new location. With a growing reputation for its highly-skilled technical, logistics and manufacturing talent pool, Limerick moved to the top of the list.”

CEO of IDA Ireland, Martin Shanahan said: “This is an excellent investment win for Limerick and the Mid West region, combining manufacturing and value-added services functions in what is a key regional location for us. Key to winning this project was the Mid West’s airport access, logistics services and a proven workforce for manufacturing and services activities. The arrival of Casa here will be valuable in terms of acting as an attractor for other such business to the region. I wish the company every success here.”

Minister Mitchell O’Connor in Longford to mark approval for Center Parcs €233 million development

Community representatives, residents, Councillors, TD’s, Senators and local businesses attended a special community reception in Ballymahon today to officially welcome Center Parcs to County Longford. The event was attended by Center Parcs CEO Martin Dalby and Mary Mitchell-O’Connor, T.D., Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, to mark the recent planning approval for the development of a €233m Center Parcs Longford Forest holiday village at Newcastle Wood in Co. Longford.

Welcoming the project and the transformative economic impact it will have on the Midlands region Mary Mitchell-O’Connor, T.D., Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, said:

“This is a transformative and hugely welcome development for the midlands region and County Longford, bringing a much needed jobs boost. As Minister for Jobs I am determined to drive our Action Plans for the Regions to ensure all regions of the country benefit from job creation. I am especially enthusiastic about Center Parcs Longford Forest because it is a new and innovative tourism project based on a successful UK model. I look forward to seeing the development of Center Parcs Longford Forest over the coming months and years.”

In his first visit to Longford since the planning decision was announced last month, Center Parcs CEO Martin Dalby expressed his sincere gratitude to the local community for their support of the project and he provided an update on the next steps in the journey to bring the landmark ‘Center Parcs Longford Forest’ tourism development to fruition.

Building on the extensive programme of community engagement throughout the planning process, Center Parcs today announced that it will be working with local community representatives to establish a Community Forum to ensure ongoing and open communication throughout the construction and development process.

Speaking at the community event he said: “I’ve been to Ballymahon many times over the last couple of years and we’ve had extensive dialogue with all interested parties about our proposals but today is markedly different. Today, the conversations are no longer about ‘if’ Center Parcs Longford Forest will get the go ahead. Today, we are talking about ‘when’ the development of Center Parcs Longford Forest will go ahead.

The journey towards securing a positive planning outcome has been incredible and I am extremely grateful to the community for engaging with us as openly as they did and for supporting us as sincerely as they did. As we enter this next phase, we are one step closer to the economic transformation of the midlands and sharing the Center Parcs experience with families throughout Ireland. Our commitments to the local community and our neighbours here in Ballymahon will remain at the core of the project through our new Center Parcs Community Forum.”

Welcoming the project and the transformative economic impact it will have on the Midlands region Mary Mitchell-O’Connor, T.D., Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, said:

In response to significant interest from commercial and enterprise groups in the midlands, Center Parcs intends to host a business and enterprise workshop in November and will release further details soon.

Providing an update on the project to the community. Center Parcs confirmed it is working towards an opening date in 2019. Center Parcs Longford Forest will create approximately 750 jobs during construction. Once open, the forest holiday village will have capacity for up to 2,500 guests and employ up to 1,000 people in permanent jobs. Many of these roles are expected to be filled by employees between the ages of 18 and 24, and the majority of employees are likely to live locally and in the surrounding midlands region. Center Parcs estimates that, when operational, the new holiday village will add approximately €32 million to Ireland’s GDP per annum.

Center Parcs offers high quality short breaks in a secluded and natural woodland setting. Center Parcs Longford Forest will epitomise the high quality features for which Center Parcs is renowned, including up to 500 lodges, designed with families and the environment in mind, more than 100 indoor and outdoor activities, a spa, a range of restaurants and cafés and the iconic Subtropical Swimming Paradise, with water rides and fun for all ages.

Over the last 29 years, Center Parcs has exhibited a proven track record of taking commercial woodlands and, through careful forest management, transforming them into areas rich in biodiversity. Center Parcs Longford Forest will have a dedicated team of Conservation Rangers who will protect and nurture this beautiful woodland.

Congratulations to the Tidy Towns awards winners in the constituency


I was delighted to see the hard work of Tidy Towns committees in the constituency rewarded at the highest level this week.

In the overall competition, Dalkey won a gold medal, Shankill a silver and Cabinteely a bronze. In the county by county competition Dalkey were highly commended, beaten only by the national overall winners Skerries, and Shankill were commended. The Dalkey (Goat) Castle project won a heritage award.

Congratulations to everyone who has played their part in these successes and also to tidy towns volunteers in Foxrock and Dun Laoghaire who have worked so hard for their areas.

Full results of the tidy towns competition can be found on

SMT creates 50 new jobs for Galway in new European Headquarters


Sahajanand Medical Technologies (SMT) is to establish its European headquarters which will have a state-of-the-art Research, Development and Innovation Centre in Galway, creating 50 jobs over five years.

Welcoming the new SMT project, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation, Mary Mitchell O Connor TD said: “I am delighted by the new initiative and warmly welcome the investment being made by SMT, with the creation of 50 new jobs in Galway.  It will build on our existing expertise in the Medical Devices sector.  This new headquarters is very welcome in a regional location in Galway, and this dovetails with the Government’s commitment to the provision of quality jobs in locations away from the main cities, driven by our successful Regional Action Plan for Jobs process”.

The project is supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation through IDA Ireland.

SMT is largest developer and manufacturer of minimally invasive coronary stent systems in India and supplies to around 60 countries in Europe, Asia, MENA and Latin America.

SMT has received numerous awards for its breakthrough innovations and quality that have led to more thinner and flexible DES with good long term clinical results.

Speaking at the announcement, SMT’s Western European Head, Mr. Gaurav Goel said: “We were pioneers among Indian medical device companies to identify tremendous value in investing in research & development (R&D). Our core strength lies in our ability to excel in developing technologically complex products through focused teams. With this centre, we hope to tap into the excellent talent pool available in Galway to make further enhancements in existing products and to develop new and innovative products.”

IDA Ireland’s CEO Martin Shanahan said: “I am delighted to welcome SMT to Galway. This is an important win for the West Region in line with our strategy to promote investment in regional locations. It will act as a valuable reference seller for us in attracting other companies in the Medical Technologies sector to the region. I wish Gaurav and his team in Galway every success.”

For information on the new roles go to:

Woods Group establishes data analytics centre of excellence in Galway


Wood Group has established a new data analytics centre of excellence at its office in Galway, Ireland. The centre, which is supported by the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation through IDA Ireland, broadens Wood Group’s capabilities in advanced data analytics to support the oil & gas, industrial, utility and power generation sectors.

In warmly welcoming the Wood Group announcement, Minister Mary Mitchell O Connor TD said: “This company is at the cutting edge of providing services for the oil and gas and power generation industries and will create further high skilled jobs in Galway. It is very gratifying that they are based in a regional location, and their expansion here dovetails with the Government’s Regional Action Plan for Jobs process.”

Enhancing Wood Group’s digital solutions capabilities, a key focus of the centre will be the innovative application to the energy industry, of data analytics technologies developed and deployed across other industries. Wood Group is looking to grow the data analytics team to ten people by year end with the intention of developing further employment opportunities next year.

Bob MacDonald, Wood Group’s CEO Specialist Technical Solutions said: “Wood Group’s commitment is to providing innovative technical solutions that solve our client’s challenges. We recognise the power of data analytics to enable our energy industry clients to optimize their exploration and drilling activities, enhance efficiencies and maximize the productivity of their assets.

“This new centre, made possible through the support of the IDA, greatly enhances our specialist technical capabilities, enabling us to handle large quantities of data effectively and embrace and explore new innovations and technologies for the oil & gas, industrial, utility and power sectors. This broadening of our capability in data analytics, married with our strong expertise and heritage in engineering will create exciting new opportunities for efficiencies that will directly benefit our clients.”

Minister of State for Gaeltacht Affairs & Natural Resources, Sean Kyne TD, who attended the announcement, said: “The decision by Wood Group to establish a new centre of excellence in data analytics in Galway is a very welcome and positive sign of growth in this sector in Galway. This investment complements our aims, contained in the Action Plan for Jobs for the West, of fostering innovation and of building sectoral clusters. The establishment of a Data Analytics Centre of Excellence by Wood Group in Galway will help make the West of Ireland a global leader in this emerging sector.”

IDA’s CEO Martin Shanahan said: “This is a welcome development from this well established company, taking it in a new direction to position it for further growth in the future in the area of data analytics to support these specialized sectors. This move by the Wood Group demonstrates its commitment to its Galway site.  It is also an endorsement of the region, showing it to be eminently suitable as a location for this type of activity.”