There has been a broad welcome to this week’s announcement by Cisco, a world leader in networking products, that an investment of €26 million is to be made in its Galway Research and Development (R&D) facility over the next two years bringing with it the creation of up to 115 new jobs.
Making the announcement of Monday, An Taoiseach Enda Kenny, that the decision by Cisco to expand its R&D capabilities is “most welcome news for Ireland and the west region” and “demonstrates the value of economic stability and Ireland’s position in Europe when it comes to our ability to attract overseas operations of world-leading multinational companies”. He added: “Today’s announcement displays Cisco’s continued commitment to its Irish operations and staff. I would like to offer Cisco every success with this expansion and offer the continued support of the Irish Government into the future.”
The Cisco Galway site, located at Oranmore Business Park, opened in 2007 and this new investment, which is supported by IDA Ireland, will see the R&D operations expand into new business areas in communication and collaboration software technology including enterprise and cloud enabled desktop, mobile applications, desktop virtualisation, and real-time web communications. Recruitment for the new positions commenced late last year and is continuing in multiple product and technology areas.
Since approval was given for the project to go ahead, significant talent has already been secured and Cisco is actively seeking to fill new software engineering, product management, and user experience positions, according to senior vice president for Cisco’s global collaboration business, Barry O’Sullivan. He went on to say: “Cisco’s R&D operation in Ireland is developing industry leading products for global markets. Access to diverse top-class engineering talent and support from IDA Ireland have helped build a successful, innovative and global development capability over the last five years.”
Also commenting on the announcement was Barry O’Leary, CEO of IDA Ireland, who said: “Cisco is an integral part of the cluster of leading technology companies operating in Galway and throughout Ireland. Seventy per cent of the world’s internet traffic is routed through Cisco equipment and the company’s investment in R&D activities in Galway will build considerable new capabilities in the Galway R&D team. The new research areas represent major growth opportunities in the area of collaboration software and are strategically significant for Cisco. IDA Ireland is delighted to support Cisco in this expansion and we wish them continued success in their Irish operations.”
The American Chamber of Commerce Ireland described the announcement as a “significant vote of confidence in the west as a location for Foreign Direct Investment”. Mark Gantly, chair of the American Chamber Western region said: "Approximately 3,500 new jobs have been announced by US companies this year in diverse sectors from advanced manufacturing to research and development and client services for global markets. The range of investments illustrates the broad base of US investment in Ireland. The West of Ireland has much to offer multinational companies and will continue to win new investment if it remains cost competitive and continues to deliver the right mix of skilled workers to help multinationals to grow.”
Echoing this was Galway West Fine Gael Senator Fidelma Healy Eames who heralded Cisco’s announcement as a “ringing endorsement of what Oranmore and Galway have to offer to overseas companies”.
“The succession of significant job announcements in the high-tech sector in Galway is no accident. We offer high quality graduates, quality infrastructure and excellent quality of life. Ireland continues to represent an increasingly competitive investment for multinational employers.
“We need to continue to invest in producing high quality IT graduates. The digital and internet sectors represent massive potential for jobs and growth for Ireland and Europe. Seven hundred thousand more IT professionals will be needed across the EU by 2015 with the digital single market having the potential to create 30,000 new jobs per year.”