Cork tech sector optimistic about the future
This was the position at the it@cork AGM as tech is the fastest growing sector, employing an estimated 29,000 people
30 April 2019 | 0
Cork’s future in tech looked bright at the it@cork AGM on April 25.
At the meeting, Caroline O’Driscoll, the outgoing chair, reflected on her tenure and shared a positive forecast for the future of Cork IT. Further, she welcomed the new Chair Anthony O’Callaghan, senior director of business integration solutions at Flex Global Solutions. Denis Canty, McKesson and Derek O Connell, JCI were elected to the Board. Gillian Bergin, Dell EMC, was appointed as vice chair.
It@cork, a not-for-profit independent business organisation, represents the interests of the IT industry in Ireland.
As the fastest growing sector in the region, doubling in size in the last 5 years and now employing an estimated 29,000 people, Cork is home to over 60 international technology companies. The largest FDI sector is technology. Employment in tech in IDA supported companies had increased 65% in just five years. O’Callaghan is taking the reins at a time when tech is thriving.
He said: “The possibilities for Cork as a tech hub right now seem endless, but to be able to capitalise on this plethora of opportunities we need to work hard to ensure the infrastructure is in place to facilitate strong growth and development. We must continue the work that Caroline and the rest of the it@cork team have done in creatingan environment that paves the way for intense collaboration across members and parallel industries.”
Addressing the room, he emphasised a need to support SMEs and to engage diverse sectors of the labour force. He discussed the organisations successful collaborations with CIT and UCC, along with their popular Skillnet offering, saying he intends to “leverage the great work of Skillnet in giving our members access to sustainable training courses for their employees. The work done through this initiative has been stellar – in 2018 alone, 65 tech companies in the South West region took part in Skillnet training including 50 courses and 500 trainees”.
O’Callaghan continued, saying, “Taking over the reins of Irelands largest technology cluster at a time of great prosperity in the South West region is both daunting and exciting, but I must admit the opportunity to continue to help it@cork stimulate growth across our member base strips away any nervousness.”
Commenting on her time as Chair, O’Driscoll said: “Chairing it@cork for the last two years has been an honour. The tech sector continues to perform strongly and in response we have increased the range of services to members in areas such as Skillnet, talent and clustering initiatives, as well as an expanded event and networking programme.”
O’Callaghan’s promotion comes with the biggest event in the it@cork calendar, the Tech Summit, just around the corner. It is set to take place on 9 May at Cork City Hall.