Industry & Business

Ireland’s recovery being driven by 40pc of firms – InterTradeIreland survey

Ireland’s recovery being driven by 40pc of firms – InterTradeIreland survey

Ireland’s recovery being driven by 40pc of firms – InterTradeIreland survey
August 24
10:17 2015

Ireland’s recovery is being driven by just 40pc of the country’s firms, while manufacturing and business services are the two biggest growth sectors, according to InterTradeIreland’s latest quarterly business monitor (Q2).
The monitor also reveals that 83pc of businesses are stable or growing. This is down from 88pc in the first quarter of the year.

The Q2 monitor focused on what differentiates growing companies. It finds that size and market orientation matter more than sector or location, with 53pc of growth firms engaging with cross-border trade and 41pc exporting outside Ireland and the UK.

Skills and getting the right people are found to be key characteristics of growth firms, with 82pc of their management teams holding a third level qualification.

Ambition and a culture that seeks out and encourages success are also crucial, with 82pc having ambitions to grown in the immediate future and 71pc having plans in place to invest in staff training.

The survey also finds that growth firms are much more likely to have innovated across all areas of the business in the past three years. For example, three-quarters of moderate to rapid growth firms introduced new or improved products or services and 62pc implemented new processes, machinery, equipment or tools.

“We took the opportunity with this quarter’s report to look at what type of firms are driving growth and what they are doing differently or better,” said InterTradeIreland’s strategy and policy director, Aidan Gough. “Although moderate to rapid growth was found in businesses of all sizes, types and sectors, it was especially prevalent amongst larger firms. In particular, the report confirmed that those firms that are exporting and those who take a more strategic approach to growth, such as having a formal business plan in place, are more successful.

“This finding confirms results from other reports that we have carried out which show that businesses that are innovating and doing things differently are three times more likely to grow. Excellence in innovation processes, culture and skills is at the core of rapidly growing firms with these businesses more likely to have dedicated R&D staff and a more formal process in place for managing innovation than non-growth firms.”

Aidan concluded: “53pc of non growth firms share this ambition to grow but need the necessary support agencies, such as InterTradeIreland, to help them avail of cross border opportunities that will help them to overcome specific capability deficiencies in the areas the survey has identified and translate that ambition into a growth reality.”

InterTradeIreland’s quarterly business monitor survey is based on the views of more than 750 business managers across Ireland and Northern Ireland.

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