Ireland is sitting upon a €12.6bn a year medtech goldmine

6 Jun 2018

Bill Doherty, executive vice-president, Cook Medical. Image: Gary Barrett

Did you know that medtech employs 38,000 people in Ireland?

The importance of medtech in promoting the health and wealth of Irish citizens needs to be better understood.

That’s the view of the executive vice-president of Limerick-based medtech firm Cook Medical, Bill Doherty.

‘The mid-west has been part of this development but can play an even bigger role in the future’

In particular, the opportunities of medtech have already transformed Limerick and the wider mid-west region’s economic potential.

Doherty was speaking at a business breakfast in Limerick to coincide with European Medtech Week at which he outlined the economic impact of medtech.

Citing 2017 figures from the Irish Medtech Association, Doherty said that the medtech sector in Ireland employs 38,000 people and is worth €12.6bn a year to the Irish economy.

The sector generates approximately 10pc of overall Irish exports.

The Irish mid-west is an epicentre of medtech innovation

He said that Limerick and the mid-west region is a thriving hub of innovation for companies in medtech and that sustained investment through regional development plans and business support networks will ensure it remains competitive and attractive.

Cook Medical is one of the largest privately held global medical technology companies, employing 880 people at its Limerick headquarters. It works closely with physicians to develop technologies that eliminate the need for open surgery. Combining medical devices, biologic materials and cellular therapies, Cook helps healthcare systems deliver better outcomes more efficiently.

“Cook Medical has called Limerick home since 1996. In that time, we have seen Ireland develop into an epicentre of medtech innovation and one of Europe’s leading medtech hubs,” said Doherty

“The mid-west has been part of this development but can play an even bigger role in the future.”

He pointed out that the region is home to 43 of Ireland’s top medtech companies, 26 of which are in Limerick.

“Recently, inbound investment into the mid-west has increased, which is positive for the future development of the region.

“Through continuous dialogue with Government, the relevant authorities, educators, local businesses and our industry peers in the mid-west, we hope to encourage and sustain a strong pipeline of investment into the region.”

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years