Mid-West & Kerry
(Clare, Limerick, Tipperary & Kerry)
- Supporting the growth and transformation of Irish enterprise
- Supporting first-time exporters and boosting capability of SMEs
- Boosting the region’s enterprise ecosystem
- Supporting the development of skills and talent
The Mid-West & Kerry region has established a strong association with important industry sectors including food, engineering, agritech, aviation, construction, fintech and digital technologies. Historically the region has been a strong centre for manufacturing and supply chain companies and has seen the emergence of some really innovative and ambitious companies. These include Kerry Group, EI Electronics, Fexco, Modular Automation, AIBP, Kirby, Roadbridge, Dairymaster, Tricel, H&MV and OMC Technologies.
Important company expansions have further endorsed the region’s position as a great place to start and grow a business. Modular Automation (Shannon); Aerogen (Shannon); Wazp (Tralee); H&MV (Limerick); are some of the companies that announced further expansion and job creation in recent years.
Enterprise Ireland works with clients from HPSUs to established companies. From an entrepreneurship perspective, the New Frontiers Programme, funded by Enterprise Ireland and delivered by the Technological University of the Shannon – Mid-West Campus and the Munster Technological University Kerry Campus, has a track record of supporting early-stage entrepreneurs and helping them develop into successful start-ups and scaling companies. Since 2019, the programme has supported 65 start-ups in the Mid-West & Kerry Region.
An area that has been brought into focus by the recent OECD report is the imperative to grow the number of Irish exporting SMEs. The Mid-West & Kerry region has a solid bank of successful domestically traded companies across all sectors who we will work with to explore these export opportunities. Enterprise Ireland has added an additional dedicated development advisor to the Mid-West & Kerry team to work directly with those companies with exporting potential to drive new growth through developing ambitious exporting strategies and bolstering management capability.
The support of Irish-grown companies, from entrepreneurship to start-up, scale-up and global success, requires investment in regional development supports such as accelerators, enterprise centres and industry clusters.
Enterprise Ireland funds and supports several important regional development initiatives and investments that are significant catalysts and economic drivers for growth in the Mid-West & Kerry region. These include:
- The Future Mobility Campus in Shannon is developing new sector opportunities for the region and nationally in Autonomous Vehicles and Advanced Air Mobility.
- Irish Bio-economy Foundation in Lisheen will provide a pilot test facility to enable commercial-scale testing of Bioproducts.
- Tipperary Engine, located in Tipperary Town, will provide a high-grade incubation space for businesses to work from in the town, plus remote working facilities for people who wish to reduce their daily commute.
- Digital Collaboration Centre @ Engine will facilitate and support companies working in a neutral collaboration space to develop new business opportunities in the digital and film sectors.
- BNest, based in the University of Limerick, drives the development of successful businesses in the social enterprise sector nationally.
- Emerald Aero Cluster currently supports 14 companies in the Aviation & Aerospace sectors, collaborating to develop market growth opportunities internationally.
- RDI Hub Killorglin is the home of the NDRC accelerator programme for the region and offers a base for start-ups; scaling, and established companies to collaborate and grow; they also provide state of the art facilities for off-site project management or strategy development teams to collaborate.
- Agricultural Centre of Excellence based in MTU Kerry Campus provides AR/VR capabilities, development programmes and a Learning Management System initially to companies in the AgTech & Engineering sectors to develop digital collateral to support technical sales and market development opportunities.
- Molteic Dingle is the home for a wholistic regional development initiative focused on projects in IoT, Energy, Creative Industries and Sustainable Farming on the Dingle Peninsula.
- Sneem Digital Hub, located in an attractive tourist location, is developing a local enterprise hub to attract enterprises and remote workers to work and live locally and broaden the area’s employment base.
- Firies Food Hub currently provides four food-grade units for producers and is developing a further ten units. They have also developed a portal for artisan producers in the region to sell products directly to 4 & 5-star hotels and restaurants in Killarney and beyond.
The region is also well served with 3 cluster projects:
- IDEAM, based in TUS Mid-West in Limerick, is focused on cluster opportunities for the ICT and Engineering sectors right across the region.
- Circular Bio-economy based in MTU Kerry Campus focus on a key emerging sector in the region and nationally.
- AgTech Cluster based in MTU Kerry is focused on the AgTech sector nationally.
Collaboration is key and Enterprise Ireland’s Mid-West team works closely with important regional stakeholders to deliver enterprise development supports that drive the growth of start-ups and established client companies. These include the South West & Mid-West Regional Skills Fora; four Local Enterprise Offices in Clare, Limerick, Tipperary and Kerry; the New Frontiers Programme team at Tom Crean Centre in MTU Kerry and the Hartnett Centre in TUS Mid-West, which support the development Enterprise Ireland’s HPSU prospects from the region.
University of Limerick, TUS Mid-West and Munster Technological University Kerry play a significant role in supporting client companies to innovate in partnership with Enterprise Ireland. The region also benefits from major research centres, including the Dairy Processing Technology Centre, the Irish Centre for Composites Research, Confirm Smart Manufacturing, Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Technology Centre, Shannon Applied Biotechnology Technology Gateway, Intelligent Mechatronics and RFID Technology Gateway and the Bernal & LERO Institutes based in University of Limerick all of which work collaboratively with Enterprise Ireland’s research and Commercialisation teams to support innovation and research by our client companies