Social networking giant Facebook has decided to locate its international headquarters in Dublin in what can only be termed as a prestigious win for Ireland, adding to a jewelled crown that includes Google, Intel, Microsoft, Apple and HP to name but a few.
Facebook, for which Microsoft paid US$240m for a 1.6pc stake that values the social networking powerhouse at US$15bn, will make Dublin the centre for its international operations and will provide a range of online technical, sales and operations support to Facebook’s users and customers across Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
The company is to establish an operation that will employ 70 people in the city.
As originally reported by siliconrepublic.com earlier this year, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said the company had scoured a number of locations, including Dublin, in order to make its choice.
“After exploring various locations throughout the region, we decided Ireland was the best place to establish our new headquarters,” said Sandbert.
“As we grow and strive to make Facebook into a place for people around the world to connect and share information, we need local operations to better advance our efforts.
“The talent pool in Dublin is world-class, and recruiting local talent will help us better understand the needs of local users and the regional dynamics that, in turn, can give us better insight into what features matter most.”
Founded in 2004, millions of people around the world use Facebook everyday to help keep up with friends, family and co-workers. People use Facebook to share photos, offer updates on their daily lives and organise activities and events around shared interests.
Making the announcement, the Tanáiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Mary Coughlan TD said: “We are delighted Facebook has chosen Ireland for its international headquarters. As a growing global company, this is an exciting investment for our country to host the leader in social networking.
“Facebook has fast become a worldwide name and it is a terrific endorsement that Ireland can satisfy the needs of such highly innovative and technologically advanced companies as they make critical investments. With our highly skilled workforce, we look forward to providing talented employees to Facebook.”
Barry O’Leary, CEO IDA Ireland added: “Ireland has always been attractive to innovative global leaders and I’m delighted that an internationally recognised brand name like Facebook has chosen to invest here.
“This is a clear validation of the advantages Ireland continues to offer to global multinational companies, and is an endorsement of the skills and competencies of the Irish to deliver competitive advantages in creative ways.”
He added, “I understand their recruitment activities are underway and Irish positions are already posted to their website”.
By John Kennedy