Ireland’s ‘scrappy’ culture creates good business, says Qualtric’s Ryan Smith

10 Nov 2014

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Qualtrics CEO and co-founder, Ryan Smith

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Ireland’s attitude to getting business done was considered one of the reasons Qualtrics, a research software company, decided to establish its European base in Ireland two years ago and it has expanded ever since.

Speaking at this year’s Web Summit, the company’s CEO and co-founder, Ryan Smith, said that having visited Ireland during previous Web Summits, he drew comparisons with Ireland and his home state of Utah which he believes had the ‘scrappy’ culture that manages to get things done.

This would appear to have been the case as since they first set up their office in Ireland, they have created hundreds of jobs in Dublin and are soon to expand into their new 26,000 sq ft office in Grafton Street.

Back home in their native US, the company is showing considerable growth since Smith and his father both started the company in 2002 from their home garage, having last September raised US$150m in Series B funding and has Microsoft, Fedex, Jet Blue and HP using its data survey, data collection and analysis technology.

Speaking of their model of data analysis compared with big data, Smith said, “There’s a lot of discussion around big data and organisations trying to line up, but the reality is that when they get to the end of getting that data sorted out, they typically already know what they’re trying to come up with. And the questions that they don’t have answers to, they still don’t have answers to it.”

The Web Summit 2014: Interview with Ryan Smith of Qualtrics

Colm Gorey is a journalist with Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com