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Tag Archives: business

Minister Breen meets EU Commissioner Gabriel

The Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen is today (Monday) meeting the European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel. Minister Breen will be in Brussels to attend a meeting of EU Single Market and Industry Ministers at which a range of issues related to EU competitiveness, including the digitisation of the EU Economy, the 25th anniversary of the Single Market and EU Industrial Policy, will be discussed. Minister Breen said he would be emphasising Ireland’s commitment to the digital agenda and, in particular, to the pursuit of the EU Digital Single Market (DSM) strategy. “Digitisation is increasing on a vast scale and Ireland continues to be regarded as one of the EU’s digital frontrunners. We fully support the overall DSM agenda and the Government sees obvious synergies between digital policy initiatives at EU level and national policy. “In particular, we want to underline the benefits to Small and …

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Breen visits Limerick’s Digital District

The Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection Pat Breen is keeping abreast of pioneering work in cutting edge technology. On Friday, he visited the University of Limerick’s Digital District at the Park Point Facility in the city for a briefing with Dr Mary Shire, vice president of research and enterprise and Dr Ann Ledwith, Dean of Graduate and Professional Studies. The Digital District will host a newly established Digital Skills Academy, the Nexus Digital Accelerator and the confirm centre for smart manufacturing. Ireland’s first Masters in Artificial Intelligence (AI) was launched on January 25 by the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys. The programme will run in UL’s Digital District from September, in association with the Irish Centre for High End Computing. After his meeting, Minister Breen said, ‘Artificial Intelligence (AI) is shaping a new reality for Irish businesses, creating exciting new opportunities for innovation across all industries. To keep …

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LEOs roar about new jobs

Start-ups and small businesses from across the country that have been supported by the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs) have delivered a net total of 3,700 new jobs in 2017. This brings the total number of new jobs created by LEO-backed companies to 15,000 since the LEOs were set up in 2014. The jobs results by the LEOs were welcomed by the Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys and the Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen, the opening of the annual LEO Forum in Athlone today (Monday). The 31 LEOs nationwide, run in partnership by Enterprise Ireland and local authorities, provide a ‘first stop shop’ for the supports available to entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses. Minister Breen said, “In a challenging environment, LEO clients have contributed substantially to economic development up and down the country, especially outside of the main urban centres. I would encourage the Local Authorities and …

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Minister Breen on US visit

The Minister of State with special responsibility for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Pat Breen, continues a programme of engagements in the United States during which he will highlight developments in Ireland’s data protection environment and its steadfast commitment as an EU member state. The programme will include 18 high-level meetings and events in San Francisco and Seattle, including a series of meetings with client companies and representatives of the IDA and Enterprise Ireland. During the course of the visit, the Minister will use the opportunity to emphasise Ireland’s attractiveness as an investment location – as an English speaking, common law jurisdiction with direct access to Europe’s single market – and its commitment to EU membership, particularly in the context of Brexit. Speaking in San Francisco, Minister Breen said,: “I am delighted to be here on the West Coast, it is a valuable opportunity to further strengthen the strong economic and cultural links between Ireland …

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SFA cautiously optimistic for 2018

THE mood amongst the small business community at the start of 2018 is cautiously optimistic, with nearly two-thirds of owner-managers believing that the business environment is improving. That’s according to the Small Firms’ Association (SFA), the Ibec group, in its Small Firms Outlook 2018 report, which was published this week. SFA director, Sven Spollen-Behrens did however add a caution. “2017 has been a challenging year for small business. Whilst cautious optimism seems to be returning amid emerging wage demands, the increasing cost of doing business and Brexit dampens the mood. “However, nearly 60% of SFA members say their businesses are growing, with only 4% declining. This shows that 2018 has the potential to be a strong year, if the risks are managed effectively at firm level and Government level.” Mr Spollen-Behrens noted 71% of survey respondents indicated their intention to recruit over the coming year, up substantially from the SFA survey in May of last year. “Small firms already employ …

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Rhode Island hub opens up US market for Clare enterprises

Clare County Council through the Local Enterprise Office Clare has embarked on a collaborative initiative to build stronger trading links with Providence in the north-eastern U.S. State of Rhode Island. A new business centre has been established in Providence to cater for County Clare enterprises seeking to enter the US market. The Ireland West International Trade Centre (IWITC) is also supported by local authorities in Sligo, Roscommon, Mayo, Leitrim and Galway. Twelve enterprises from across the West of Ireland have returned from a visit to Rhode Island where they engaged with various businesses and political leaders and explored the potential opportunities for winning business in the United States. Clare businesses were represented Louise McGuane of the Chapel Gate Irish Whiskey Coin Coraclare and Aidan Quilligan, Sixmilebridge of Clubify. Members of the Irish delegation also were guests of honour at World Trade Day, held annually in Bryant University. This event is focused on developing international trade and was attended by over …

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Chocolate company expands following appearance on Dragon’s Den

  Irish Raw Chocolate Business Magic Mayan has expanded its sales into Northern Ireland and is growing in size following owner Darren O’Connor’s appearance on RTE’s Dragon’s Den last night (Sunday, April 30). While the county Clare family business did not secure an investment from the five dragons, in the days after filming Magic Mayan signed a contract to export its chocolate and protein bombs into the UK via Northern Ireland. Employing five people and with plans to expand the workforce and production of chocolate and protein bombs even further in the coming months, the artisan raw chocolate business based in Ennis continues to grow. “We are currently selling 35,000 protein bombs a month and more than 1,000 bars of hand made chocolate each week through our Irish distributers, and online,” explained Darren, who took over Magic Mayan two years ago with his wife Sinéad. “The protein bomb market is growing at a huge rate internationally as people are becoming …

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Updated: Voluntary redundancy scheme for Shannon

SOURCES on Wednesday evening indicated that employees aged in their mid 50s and older at Shannon Airport will be offered a voluntary redundancy package. While Shannon’s traffic has increased since it separated from the Dublin Airport Authority at the start of 2013, it is still less than 50% of what it was at its peak. As far back as June 2015, a voluntary redundancy scheme for the airport was first proposed, at a time when Neil Pakey was still its CEO. Then it was said that such a move would be required to address Shannon’s cost base, with staffing levels still relatively similiar to 2006 and 2007, when Shannon had more than 3.6 million passengers per annum. To put it in perspective, there were 1.7 million passengers in 2016. It appears that the savings achieved through redundancies would be used in part to fund redevelopment at the airport. At the moment some works are underway in the terminal building and there are …

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