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Business, Employment, Finance, Life sciences and energy | Mon 26 Sep | Author – Business & Finance
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Business & Finance brings you the day’s Irish business news in brief.

Monday, September 26th 2016

Fort Wayne Metals Ireland expands operations in Castlebar

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Fort Wayne Metals Ireland has announced the expansion of its production operations in Castlebar, an investment of €10m with the addition of production floor space in the next year. As a result, they plan to create 40 additional jobs over five years.

Founded in 1971, Fort Wayne Metals is a leading manufacturer of medical materials, producing precision wire and components for all types of medical devices. The company’s materials are used in guidewires, stents, embolic filters, pacemaker leads, neurostimulation leads, endoscopy, orthopaedic devices, and more.

Fort Wayne Metals Ireland commenced operations in Castlebar in 2002 and now employs 80 staff. The company manufactures products for medical device companies in Ireland, Europe and Asia. The parent Company headquartered in Indiana, USA, is a privately held company with nine manufacturing plants.

Chairman and CEO Scott Glaze applauded the success and commitment of his team in Castlebar and reiterated the company’s commitment to Ireland. “We are very proud of the achievements and the commitment of our people here. Our people are our strength and this is what gives me great confidence in this investment.”

WP Engine announces new innovation and technical support centre in Limerick

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WP Engine has announced the opening of its new Technical Support and Innovation Centre in Limerick today, which is expected to create 100 jobs over three years.

WP Engine delivers managed services for premium websites built on WordPress.

Today, approximately 5% of the online world visits a website powered by WP Engine every day. The opening of the Limerick centre will further support the demand for managed WordPress across EMEA.

Drawing on the highly skilled technical talent in Ireland’s third largest metropolitan area, the new centre will also expand what is already the industry’s largest R&D organisation with a dedicated team based in Limerick, working together with the team in the US to accelerate development of WP Engine’s platform.

IDA Ireland’s CEO Martin Shanahan said: “This is a terrific investment by this high growth technology company in a key regional location.

Its presence here will serve as a compelling reference seller of the location for other technology companies. The benefit of 100 new jobs to the local area and economy will be substantial.”

Four in 10 Irish SMEs have been the victim of a cyber security attack

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40% of SMEs in Ireland have fallen foul of one of the biggest threats facing business in the present day – a cyber-attack leading to theft or loss of company data.

This is according to findings from a nationwide survey conducted by Ireland’s leading provider of online accounting systems, Big Red Cloud. The survey sought to ascertain the views of business owner/ managers of 500 of Ireland’s SMEs, on issues pertaining to cyber security and data protection.

Marc O’Dwyer, CEO of Big Red Cloud, said: “The advent of ICT and the greater integration of technology in businesses across all industries has meant that most businesses are now vulnerable to this threat and as a result need to take the necessary precautions to at least make it as difficult as possible for cyber criminals to target their firm.”

Irish wholesale gas prices continue to tumble

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Irish wholesale gas prices are 45% lower on average this month compared to September 2015 according to the September 2016 Business Energy Report by Vayu Energy.

These losses continue to be attributed to on-going healthy supply, decreased demand year on year and a stronger euro to sterling exchange rate.

Wholesale gas prices are down 13% month-on-month. A significant supply overhang pushed the prompt market to lows not seen since 2009 during the first half of the month.

This has had a significant impact for lowering the energy costs of many Irish businesses purchasing gas on the wholesale market, particularly for users in the industrial and commercial sector.

Enterprise Ireland’s first life sciences trade mission to the US concludes

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Eighteen Irish life sciences companies travelled to the twin cities of Minneapolis and St Paul in Minnesota, one of the largest medtech clusters in the United States.

Dozens of leads for Irish medtech companies involved in sub-supply (SS) and finished devices (FD) have been created and progressed during the five-day mission. The companies from all over Ireland participated in one-to-one meetings with many attending the Medical Design and Manufacturing Conference in Minneapolis. Leading organisations such as Boston Scientific, Medtronic, 3M, Teleflex Medical, Mayo Clinic and Stratasys also hosted the delegation.

During the mission, Leitrim company Cora Systems, which is a leading provider of enterprise portfolio, program and project management solutions, announced a significant contract with Honeywell Building Solutions.

Life Sciences companies from counties Dublin, Galway, Louth, Cork, Leitrim, Sligo, Westmeath, Clare and Waterford took part in the trade mission.

Unsecure green practices putting Irish businesses at risk

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Businesses in Ireland are potentially putting themselves at risk by disposing of sensitive documents in unsecured recycling bins, leading information destruction company, Shred-it, has warned.

According to the findings of a new independent survey, one in ten Irish employees admitted to disposing of confidential information in the workplace recycling bin, despite knowing the information security risks. Client, customer and internal correspondence were among the most common types of information disposed of in the recycling bin.

The survey also found one-fifth of employees were unaware that disposing of sensitive company information in an unsecure recycling bin could lead to serious data breach or workplace fraud.

The survey also revealed a need for stringent data security policies and robust training practices in Irish workplaces as 40% of workers admitted they were not aware of what happens to documents discarded in the recycling bin once they leave the office.

Ministers welcome launch of Health Innovation Hub Ireland

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Health Innovation Hub Ireland, a key element of the Action Plan for Jobs 2016 and the Programme for Government has officially been launched.

The Hub is hosted by University College Cork in partnership with Cork Institute of Technology, the National University of Ireland Galway and Trinity College Dublin. This project hopes to will establish Ireland as a leading location for start-ups and expanding healthcare companies, allowing easy interaction with hospitals and primary care centres.

The aim of Health Innovation Hub Ireland is to drive collaboration between the health service and enterprise, leading to the development of new healthcare technologies, products, and services.

€68m medtech research centre opens in NUI Galway

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A developing medical devices which mimic the body’s biology was officially opened in Galway today.

Based at NUI Galway, Cúram will be a global hub of research expertise in medical device technology. A total of 250 researchers will attempt to advance medical devices for chronic diseases including diabetes, Parkinson’s and heart disease.

Professor Abhay Pandit, scientific director, Cúram commented: “Working with industry partners and clinicians, we will better understand the ‘hostile environment’ of the body and advance medical devices to the next stage where they mimic the body’s biology. We want to launch devices which are more effective for the individual patient, but more affordable to lessen the burden on healthcare systems worldwide.”