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Investment in Limerick bodes well for future

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On a cold December morning last year Limerick
received good news. One of the largest and fastest-growing pharmaceutical
companies in the United States announced it was set to invest over €300 million
and create 300 high-skill jobs in Limerick by 2016. 
The news came at a time
when our city was in the midst of festive madness, a time when our era as
National City of Culture was set to dawn.
Regeneron didn’t simply arrive in Limerick
overnight. They carefully chose Limerick based on numerous criteria they
identify as crucial to their operation. Regeneron would give great credit to
the IDA but also highlights the local community for the support the company has
received to date on a local level.
One of the major focuses of Limerick 2030’s
economic and spatial plan is job creation and inward investment for the city
and county. The Regeneron announcement was significant not just for the jobs it
would create once open but the many construction jobs it would provide in the
interim.
With all that went on in the early months of
2014 it would is forgivable that we may have somewhat forgotten this welcome announcement.
So what is the current status of Regeneron’s Limerick investment?
Planning permission was granted for site
development on March 31st and contractors are now on site many of whom are
Limerick-based.  By June 2014 just over
1435 job applications were received by Regeneron, 147 interviews had taken
place and 34 offers were made with 60% of candidates placed coming from either
the University of Limerick or Limerick Institute of Technology. Further
interviews will take place later this year for roles in the areas of maintenance
and senior biotech production.
These statistics clearly show the dedicated
work being done by Regeneron to ensure local talent is sourced in advance of
the official opening in 2016. The company has praised the quality of graduates
emerging from our third-level academic institutions. This is high praise indeed
from a company named the number one employer in the global pharmaceutical
industry two years running.
Behind the scenes key figures from the IDA,
Limerick City and County Council, our academic institutions and business
leaders from across many sectors are working tirelessly to ensure Limerick is
seen as an attractive destination for foreign direct investment.
Just last week representatives from our
merged local authority visited the city of Santa Clara to sign a memorandum of
understanding which will develop stronger economic and civic links between
Limerick and this key Silicon Valley hub. This move did not happen on a whim.
It is a strategic move aimed at furthering economic investment into Limerick.
Investment cannot happen overnight. Potential
investors do their research and must feel they are basing themselves in a city
and region that exudes a confident, can-do mentality. I trust that all of those
working behind the scenes are doing a fine job. We can be certain that we will
see further announcements down the line.  

I believe we can look forward to watching
Limerick grow as forward-thinking, attractive and world-class business investment
hub.

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