When it comes to tech, Ireland is primed for success and expansion. Both parts of the island are fostering a tech startup scene with pro-business initiatives and an environment ripe for collaboration between industry, academia and state agencies.
It’s not simply policy either. Ireland’s rich arts and culture sector, unspoiled landscapes and easy access to the US and mainland UK, as well as Europe, make it a desirable living option for tech workers the Irish are keen to capitalize and market on.
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Over the past two decades, the Republic has enjoyed a low corporate tax rate of 12.5% and has benefitted from over $277 billion in American investment. In 2018, Northern Ireland will bring its corporate tax rate in line, effectively making the island a single-investment location for foreign investment.
Dublin, home to over 2,000 startups, hopes to boost tech growth in the so-called Silicon Docks with initiatives to attract fresh talent. In Belfast, the Northern Ireland Science Park (NISP) aims to create and foster 500 startups by 2030 and hopes to see 24 IPOs by that decade too.
In our series of highlighting cool startups from the Index.co community, here are our picks from the Irish tech scene in time for St Patrick’s Day.
For farmers who want to spend more time in the field than inside the office, Herdwatch is something to check out. It’s a cloud-based, cross-platform app for dairy, suckler and beef farmers aimed at saving hours of compliance paperwork a week, approved by the Department of Agriculture itself. Record feed purchases, calf births, record weights and manage full breeding cycles anytime, anywhere you want.
Sophia Search is an ad tech company that wants to increase your revenue as a publisher and improve the browsing experience for your readers. It’s an artificial intelligence based solution that’s focused on increasing engagement as people browse your website. It pairs relevant products while customers browse your content, making it a neat alternative to poorly targeted adverts and banner blindness.
Borne out of frustration for outdated communication tools in hospitals, Medxnote is a secure mobile messaging platform for healthcare enterprise. It lets you use the smartphone you already have for clinical team communication to maximize speed and efficiency. It won first prize at the annual medical conference dotMED with its focus on patient-centric features, full messaging auditing and privacy and security.
The Internet of Things (IoT), a gigantic network of connected objects, is an exciting space to watch with endless opportunities. In Ireland, VT Networks has secured $1.3 million in seed funding to oversee the infrastructure that will handle over 1 million connected Irish devices by 2017. They’ll be bringing together devices across logistics, healthcare, consumer electronics, intelligent building and emergency services among other sectors. Isn’t that impressive?
Disaster Tech Lab
Based in Tipperary, Disaster Tech Lab is a rapid response communications response unit that assists in disaster hit areas. Upon deployment, their mix of IT and communications engineers get started on reconnecting communities and other responders. If the infrastructure is absent, they’ll get to work on building it from scratch sourcing lampposts, solar panels, and batteries to provide Internet access to disaster-stricken zones.
For social entrepreneurs and people who want to make their local community stronger, ChangeX is a platform to empower changemakers. It raised $443,000 in seed funding last summer to provide a one-stop service centre for innovators. Its discovery platform shows you proven ideas in other communities, and gives you the information and support to help you join or start new initiatives you’re passionate about in your area.