The good news story of 250 new jobs to be created at Hollister ULC in Ballina, plus an additional 200 short-term jobs for construction workers over the next year, has been warmly welcomed this week. The US based healthcare company is investing €65 million in expanding its current manufacturing facility in Ballina with an additional 75,000 square feet by end of 2011.
Hollister first opened its doors in Ballina in 1976 and currently employs 390 staff. The Ballina facility supplies a number of markets worldwide including Europe, Africa, and the Middle East and currently spends €40 million a year in the Ballina area on wages and materials.
Following the announcement by Minister for Trade and Innovation Batt O’Keeffe in Ballina on Monday, his Government colleague Minister of State Dara Calleary told the Mayo Advertiser it was a great day for the whole area. “In the current economic climate it’s a great thing to be able to announce. I’m really proud of being involved in this in a small way, but the people who should be really proud are those 400 who work there already and have made this possible. Hollister is part of this town and an amazing company that has been a huge contributor to the community and you can see the great spirit that is there in the town on a day like today.”
Welcoming the jobs boost, Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny, just returned from meetings with US business in New York, reaffirmed that if elected in government, Fine Gael would not increase the rate of corporation tax from its current level of 12 per cent.
Mayo Fine Gael TD, John O’Mahony commented: “It’s a wonderful day and a real good news story for Ballina where the people can now look forward with confidence to the future.”
Deputy Beverley Flynn stated that the benefits of the expansion would be felt over a wide area.
“This is a massive vote of confidence in Ballina and in Ireland as the preferred location of such a hugely successful healthcare company At a time when building work and construction are going through hard times, to have 200 jobs come on stream here also is a great boost,” she said.
She added that Hollister's decision to expand further in Ballina should give a great impetus to the IDA as it continues to attract foreign direct investment into Ireland.