Start-ups created two-thirds of 21,000 new jobs in 2015 – Enterprise Ireland

5 Jan 2016202 Shares

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Enterprise Ireland CEO Julie Sinnamon at last year’s Inspirefest 2015. Sinnamon said that 61 of the start-up companies that Enterprise Ireland invested in were led by female entrepreneurs. Photo: Conor McCabe Photography

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Firms supported by Enterprise Ireland reported the creation of 21,118 new jobs during 2015. Taking into account job losses and churn this translated into a net increase of 10,169 new jobs for 2015.

Almost two-thirds of the new jobs were created outside Dublin and all of the regions reported increases in full-time employment in 2015.

Total employment in Enterprise Ireland companies now stands at 192,223 people.

‘Today’s results, the best in several decades, show that more than 10,000 extra people are at work in Irish exporting companies today compared to one year ago’
– RICHARD BRUTON TD, MINISTER FOR JOBS, ENTEPRISE AND INNOVATION

“Irish businesses are making a huge contribution to the recovery in the economy and 2015 was a great year for job creation in the companies Enterprise Ireland supports,” said Enterprise Ireland CEO Julie Sinnamon.

“Our focus on helping businesses to start, innovate and scale is paying dividends, with the highest level of full-time jobs created and the lowest level of jobs lost in businesses that are competing globally from Ireland.”

Start-ups and female entrepreneurs are key, says Enterprise Ireland

A key contribution was made by start-up companies in 2015, said Sinnamon.

“Start-up companies account for over two-thirds of all new jobs created in Ireland and over 200 early-stage companies have been approved for investment by Enterprise Ireland. We have also supported a further 500 start-up companies through the Local Enterprise Offices (LEOs).

“I am also delighted that 61 of the start-up companies that Enterprise Ireland invested in were led by female entrepreneurs and there were 15 investments in companies established in Ireland by overseas entrepreneurs last year through our new fund, which gives an indication of our competitiveness as an attractive investment location.”

Innovation is paying off, but scaling up remains a challenge

Sinnamon also said investments in R&D and other forms of innovation are playing a key role in job creation and growing exports.

A strategic priority for Enterprise Ireland is to help scale more indigenous businesses into multinationals. A recent study by Start-up Ireland confirmed that scaling up is the biggest challenge facing start-ups in Ireland.

In 2015, 240 Enterprise Ireland clients made investments of over €500,000 in their companies, reflecting increasing confidence in their scaling opportunities. The agency has also undertaken 121 international trade events and brought more than 1,000 international buyers to Ireland to help clients to scale by winning more business globally.

‘Innovation is a key success factor for many Enterprise Ireland clients’
– JULIE SINNAMON, ENTERPRISE IRELAND

“Innovation is a key success factor for many Enterprise Ireland clients. In 2015, the agency invested in a record 875 collaborative research and development projects between companies and higher education. Furthermore, we have made strategic investments in new technology, such as the new €35m Dairy Processing Technology Centre, to position Ireland as a world leader in dairy innovation and the partners involved produce €2.5bn in exports annually”.

The challenges posed by shortages of tech and scientific talent is also being addressed and Enterprise Ireland said it is working to help client companies overcome barriers such as access to finance and finding talent.

Sinnamon said there is still a need to see greater access to finance in the market to enable companies to scale.

“In 2016, the global outlook remains positive, but winning market for our exports is always challenging.

“In Enterprise Ireland, we will continue to focus on supporting Irish business to start, innovate and scale to win new business, compete internationally and to create new jobs,” Sinnamon said.

The job creation results were welcomed by Jobs Minister Richard Bruton TD

“Today’s results, the best in several decades, show that more than 10,000 extra people are at work in Irish exporting companies today compared to one year ago,” Minister Bruton said.

“They also show that almost two-thirds of the new jobs were created outside Dublin and that jobs grew in every region in 2015. This did not happen by accident – it happened as the result of a carefully designed and implemented plan. I wish to pay tribute to Julie and all the team at Enterprise Ireland on this excellent achievement.

“If we continue to implement our plan we can have confidence that we can keep the recovery going in every part of the country in the coming years.”

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Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com