The digital business week

8 Jun 2010

A digest of the top business and technology news stories from the past week.

Ireland needs more green-investment tax breaks

Seventy-eight per cent of Irish firms want more Government tax breaks to speed up green investment take-up, a Regus survey suggests.

A new global survey by workspace solutions provider Regus has found that 78pc of Irish companies feel that Government tax breaks are required to accelerate green investment take-up.

Future Human

In Ireland, specifically, the survey found that: only 9pc monitor their carbon footprint; 67pc had no company policy to invest in energy-efficient equipment; running costs were found to be very important to 43pc of companies who said they would only invest in low-carbon equipment if it were cheaper or the same to run as conventional equipment; and 78pc of companies declared that if government offered tax incentives to invest in energy-efficient or low-carbon equipment businesses would significantly speed up their green investments.

Irish firm creates 71 jobs at Dublin Airport

Enterprise Minister Batt O’Keeffe TD has announced the creation of 71 aircraft maintenance jobs at Dublin Airport over the next three years.

The positions are being created by aircraft maintenance firm Eirtech Aviation, which is supported by Enterprise Ireland.

Eirtech has identified a market for the maintenance of wide-body aircraft which it cannot carry out in Shannon for space reasons. Therefore, it has established a wholly-owned subsidiary in Dublin Airport to meet the demand in this market.

Eirtech Aviation will provide aircraft refurbishment, painting and engineering to commercial airlines at Dublin, as well as private and business-class aircraft operators and aircraft leasing companies.

The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Shannon-based Eirtech Aviation Ltd, which employs 65 workers and was formed following a management buyout of Lufthansa Technik Painting Shannon Ltd last year.

€3.6m Innovation Works 3 building opens in Thurles

Enterprise Minister Batt O’Keeffe TD has opened a new €3.6m building in Shannon Development’s Tipperary Technology Park in Thurles, bringing total investment in the park to €7.4m.

Innovation Works 3 comprises a 21,500 sq-foot, two-storey office building and associated site works, including an increase to the existing car parking area.

The total industrial space in the park is now more than 45,000 sq-feet.

O’Keeffe said: “This new facility sends a clear signal to entrepreneurs and potential investors that Ireland is open for business and it reaffirms the Government’s commitment to the economic development of Thurles and North Tipperary.

“As an economy, we are turning the corner and this project adds momentum to our recovery,” O’Keeffe said.

O’Keeffe also announced a number of local job creation initiatives in Clonmel aimed at driving enterprise in South Tipperary.

eBay working for Donegal start-ups

More than 10pc of all online retail business in Ireland and the UK is conducted on eBay and almost 40pc of online retailers using eBay are based in rural areas, according to eBay instructor Michael Hughes.

In his opinion, Donegal businesses are at the cutting edge when it comes to making use of eBay.

He was speaking as Donegal County Enterprise Board announced the latest crop of graduates of its Advanced eBay training course, which it has been running since 2008.

“eBay is a brilliant way for small retailers in Donegal to overcome obstacles that can block them from growing their business,” said Ursula Donnelly, assistant CEO at Donegal County Enterprise Board.

“Rural businesses usually have problems getting access to a bigger customer base and are worried about getting paid by overseas clients. With eBay, you can set up a virtual store in a few days, use PayPal for your payments, and you immediately have access to everyone, from New York to Nagasaki.”

Each course run by Donegal County Enterprise Board has produced several new businesses, as well as helping to transform existing ones.

ERP giant Infor buys Bridgelogix

Business software player Infor has acquired Bridgelogix, an Infor solution partner and leader in bar-code data collection solutions.

The acquisition will allow for closer alignment of Bridgelogix complementary solutions with many Infor products, which may provide greater flexibility, simplicity, speed and accuracy to manufacturers.

The price of the acquisition was not disclosed.

Bridgelogix technology currently integrates with certain Infor ERP solutions and complements Infor Warehouse Management Systems (WMS).

Following this acquisition, Infor plans to drive further integrations and product enhancements which may create more value for Infor’s 70,000 global customers.

Aerospace tech firm opens European HQ in Dublin

Technology firm AMPAC-ISP, which makes components for the aerospace industry, has established its European headquarters in Ballycoolin, Dublin.

Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation Batt O’Keeffe TD, launched the technology development and manufacturing centre that employs 30 people in Dublin and a further 65 throughout Europe.

AMPAC-ISP (in-space propulsion) develops, manufactures and assembles components for rocket engines at the €1m Space Technology Centre in Ballycoolin and has a large-scale “clean room” for this purpose.

Photo: Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation Batt O’Keeffe TD

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