News and Press Releases

Media Center

Think Globally. Act Locally.

Animal medicines company purchases Rathdrum site

animal medicineThe world's largest manufacturer of animal medicines and vaccines has bought the former MSD pharmaceutical plant in Rathdrum, Co Wicklow. 


Reposted by InterSearch Ireland




The MSD plant was closed down in November 2016

US-based company Zoetis, which already operates two sites in Ireland, confirmed that it has completed the acquisition of the 84-acre site in Rathdrum.

 MSD had employed 280 people at the site, but the operation was wound down over a three-year period, resulting in the loss of all jobs by November 2016.

In a statement Zoetis said they will gradually phase in operations at the site from later this year.

They say the Rathdrum facility will play a vital role the company’s global manufacturing and supply network.

A spokesperson was unable to say how many jobs might be created or how soon they will come on line.

Zoetis already employs 75 people at facilities in Dublin and Tullamore. 

The company manufactures antibiotics, vaccines and a range of other medicines for cattle, sheep, horses and domestic pets. 


For more on this, please click on the link below


Related articles:



Exports and Life Sciences

LIFE SCIENCES ExportsQuestion & Answer with Simon McKeever, Chief Executive, Irish Exporters Association on the supply chain of Life Sciences.


Reposted by InterSearch Ireland



What mechanisms best encourage growth in Irish life sciences exports?

Ireland, as a small open economy, really punches above its weight globally in the LifeSciences industry. We are home to 9 of the top 10 world’s pharmaceutical companies and we exported nearly €32bn in medical and pharmaceutical products in 2016.

Our booming LifeSciences industry is largely due to our high number of educated graduates, access to the EU and undoubtedly our low corporate tax rate. Ireland’s universities in the fields of Engineering, Chemistry, Bio Chemistry and Bio Technology have strong cooperative links with industry in the sector. Irish third level institutions saw a gap in the education market for courses that produced highly skilled graduates in these developing technologies and there is now a close link between the industry and colleges in this country, ensuring that the skills needed in the sector are steadily met.

What kind of opportunities do you see Brexit affording Irish exporters in the life sciences industry?

Ireland has always been a powerful player in the pharmaceutical industry, attracting a significant level of FDI. Ireland has an excellent reputation globally as a centre of excellence in the LifeSciences industry and Brexit could result in increased FDI for companies wanting to move operations or business lines to Ireland in order to retain access to the EU market while still remaining in an English speaking nation.

Brexit may also create huge opportunities for service providers within the LifeSciences supply chain. Irish pharma companies currently use the UK as a landbridge / airbridge to ship finished products to mainland Europe and storage facilities in the UK are used for onward delivery within the EU. There is currently a serious lack of facilities of the scale required within Ireland so opportunities exist to build warehousing facilities here dedicated to LifeSciences, specialising in temperature controlled logistics with the resulting development of Ireland as a pharma distribution centre for the rest of the EU. This would of course need to be supported with the strategic development of sufficient air transport.

How should Irish life sciences companies ready themselves to make the most of these opportunities?

Preparation in all areas of Brexit exposure coming down the line will be key to making the most of opportunities. The IEA recommend that companies begin by mapping out each area of their business with exposure to the UK. It is crucial that Irish LifeSciences exporters do an impact assessment, especially in relation to the exchange rate, and look at their supply chains and the potential impact of changes in currency, customs, tariffs, VAT, visa requirements and EU regulations & legislation on them. We recommend in particular that companies carefully examine their product supply chains from raw material to finished goods.

It is unclear yet as to how the regulatory environment will change in a post-Brexit environment, but some scoping of this may need to be done for the UK marketplace.  In the event of a threat to the UK landbridge, strategically, it would require a co-ordinated approach at national level to expanding our LifeSciences sector to meet the potential opportunity that Brexit may provide. It includes the need to scope out not only the increase in production but all the support services, including large scale temperature controlled warehousing, along with the strategic development of sufficient air transport, and the scoping of new more direct shipping routes to the EU.

Is the emphasis on increased supply chain security and patient safety putting pressure on the life sciences supply chain?

I would say more that there is increased responsibility on the manufacturer than pressure on the supply chain. Given the scale of this industry in Ireland and the specific nature by which these goods must be shipped, the wholesale distribution of medicinal products is an important activity in integrated supply chain management. Due to the improvements in reefer technology and remote temperature control monitoring, there has been an observed modal shift from air to sea for certain pharma products. However, due to the clinical urgency of certain biopharmaceuticals, such products are transported by air to their market destination.

Good manufacturing practice and good distribution practice need to work hand in hand and vigilance by all concerned in the supply chain is vital to ensure patient safety. The number of subcontracted companies involved in the supply chain for biopharmaceutical products with different modes of transport and temperature control has increased significantly. Collaboration between all parties, including manufacturers, logistics service providers, ports and airports, is crucial to ensure anti-theft and anti-counterfeit procedures, product integrity and patient safety. The Irish Exporters Association has been at the forefront of informing the Irish pharma supply chain of their GDP requirements through the IEA GDP Passport initiative. The IEA GDP Passport certification has become the gold standard for GDP in Ireland with all leading logistics service providers in the field now having obtained certification. As the pharma sector has grown in Ireland, the IEA has played a key role in ensuring that companies can reach and exceed the required compliance role in assuring quality of the supply chain and distribution of pharmaceutical and medical device products.


For more on this, please click on the link below

Microsoft and General Electric invest in Irish wind technology

big wind turbinesThe tech giant has signed a deal with GE to use wind technology to power its cloud services unit


Reposted by InterSearch Ireland



Two of the world’s biggest engineering companies chose Ireland to test out new wind power technology that can deliver smooth flows of clean energy to data centres.

Microsoft signed a 15-year deal with General Electric to buy all the electricity generated at a new 37-megawatt wind farm in Co Kerry, which will power its growing cloud services unit in Ireland, according to a press release on Monday.

The Tullahennel Wind Farm is the first in Europe to integrate a battery into each turbine to store energy and smooth out power flows from the intermittent renewable resource, according to the statement. Microsoft said it also acquired an Irish energy supply licence from GE and signed a deal with ElectroRoute Energy Trading, a unit of Mitsubishi, which will provide energy trading services.

The deal builds on Microsoft and GE’s strategic partnership signed last year to deploy GE’s “industrial internet” services platform Predix, allowing companies to capture data and use it to improve the performance of assets.

“Our commitment will help bring new, clean energy to the Irish grid, and contains innovative elements that have the potential to grow the capacity, reliability and capability of the grid,” said Christian Belady, general manager of datacentre strategy at Microsoft.

“This will make it easier to incorporate new clean power sources like wind energy, and that is good for the environment, for Ireland and for our company,” he added.

Andres Isaza, chief commercial officer of GE Renewable Energy, said: “This partnership with Microsoft expands GE’s considerable presence and investment in Ireland, where we already employ over 1,500 people and in particular in the renewable energy sector.

“ Wind is now one of the most competitive sources of electricity on the market today, and we’re excited about the capability to use data generated from these wind turbines, using the Predix platform, to maximize the output and value of this project.”


For more on this, please click the link below

What's forecast for 2018: More jobs, more spending and higher wages

budget 2018The optimistic outlook comes as the government prepares to announce Budget details for 2018


Reposted by InterSearch Ireland


 THE FORECAST FOR 2018 looks good for Ireland, with the number of permanent jobs predicted to increase, and in turn, propping up an increase in customers’ spending.

Ahead of next week’s Budget announcement, the Economic & Social Research Institute (ESRI) has predicted that Ireland’s financial growth is expected to continue increasing.

Ireland’s GDP growth, a rough measurement for the country’s economic state, is forecast at 5% in 2017 and 4% in 2018.


Image: Andrea Delbo via Shutterstock

In layman’s terms, the ESRI are predicting:

  • Unemployment will average out at 6.1% in 2017 and 5.4% in 2018
  • Part-time positions will replace full-time positions “at an accelerated rate”
  • There will be an increase in customer spending with “a strong forecast” for household spending in particular
  • Increased investment in the construction industry will continue into 2018 according “to a variety of indicators”.

As employment opportunities increase, wage growth has also intensified: “rising four times faster in the period between Q2 2016 and Q2 2017 compared to the same period in the previous year”.

But the ESRI has previously warned that Celtic Tiger mistakes could be repeated if the government isn’t careful – in March it said that the overproduction in the construction sector could potentially cause the economy to overheat if production outpaced demand.

“If unemployment were to fall below 5.5% this would almost certainly confirm that the domestic economy is overheating,” the report said.

The ESRI’s research professor Dr Edgar Morgenroth notes something similar in this report: that investment must be introduced in a regionally balanced manner, and ill-advised plans may run the risk of increasing construction prices further.

Another report indicated that Ireland’s economic output would be greatly affected by a so-called “hard Brexit” and that it would hit fiscal space by up to €500 million over three years.

Author of the study, Professor Kieran McQuinn said that “the key challenge for the government is how to transition the economy from one enjoying elevated rates of economic growth, to a more stable period of sustainable activity over the medium-term.”


For more on this please click on the link below