The first six digital media and software firms to become residents of the Digital Hub in Dublin’s Liberties have moved into their new offices. They will employ 100 people between them.
The six companies – a mixture of e-learning, multimedia, digital TV and content management – will be located in the OneFiveSeven building on Thomas Street. The six companies are Certification Europe, Educational Multimedia Corporation, Fluid Rock, Kratos, ShopAD and Unlimited.
According to the Digital Hub, over 20 companies have applied to locate in the 8,000 sq ft building. Applications were prioritised based on innovation, creativity, internationalisation, match with space available, match with duration of short-term letting and strategic fit with the Digital Hub.
An additional 20,000 sq ft of enterprise space will be made available in the coming months with the redevelopment of the former Guinness print depot, which will be completed this summer and will accommodate up to 20 companies.
The aim of establishing the Digital Hub is to create a cluster of like-minded companies to establish a beachhead for Ireland’s own digital media industry. A recent PricewaterhouseCoopers forecast valued the global digital media industry to be currently worth €80bn, set to grow to €460bn by 2006. As well as clustering opportunities, the Digital Hub has access to its own high-speed broadband metropolitan area network.
When the Digital Hub is complete, it will feature approximately 500,000 sq ft of development, with a mix of enterprise, retail, residential and educational space. Funding for the hub is structured under a public private partnership scheme.
In December it was announced that Duggan Brothers Ltd was appointed as the main contractor for the redevelopment of the print depot building. This particular project is a joint venture between the Digital Hub, Dublin City Council and Enterprise Ireland, which will invest €2.3m in the former Guinness print depot building.
The Digital Hub was first created as a government initiative aimed at fostering a digital media sector in Ireland. The total estimated cost of the investment is €250m, of which the Government has already committed €130m under the remit of the Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources.
By John Kennedy