Darragh Cotter, Cleantech Market Advisor at Enterprise Ireland, describes exciting prospects for a world-leading Irish supply chain in the offshore wind market.

An ambitious industry plan recently presented by the UK Offshore Wind Industry Council (OWIC) includes the aim of generating 30GW of offshore wind power by 2030, up from a current operational capacity of 7GW, with a further 7GW already consented or under construction. The 2030 vision will require a £48 billion investment in UK infrastructural spending, supporting upwards of 27,000 skilled jobs. The plan will provide more than one third of the UK’s electricity needs and strengthen the nation’s position as the global leader in offshore wind.

The commitment by the UK offshore wind industry to work with the UK Government on an ambitious and transformative sector deal will require a significant mobilisation of the supply chain, and Irish companies are ready to act. Enterprise Ireland research shows that there are well over 50 Irish companies with proven capability and experience across the offshore wind supply chain. Additionally, many companies possess the ability to quickly and effectively pivot in to the sector to provide reliable and innovative products and services to an ever-growing industry.

Irish expertise in the offshore wind sector

There is a well-established history of Irish companies driving growth within the offshore wind sector, going back to Arklow Bank in 2004. Located 12 km off Ireland’s east coast, Arklow Bank was one of the first offshore wind farms to be developed in either Ireland or the UK. Commissioned in 2004 by Irish-owned Airtricity (now part of SSE plc), the project brought over 25MW of clean renewable electricity to the grid. Airtricity subsequently brought their Arklow Bank experience to the 504MW Greater Gabbard offshore wind farm off the Suffolk coast, where construction was completed in 2012.

Irish influence in the UK can also be seen in the Hornsea One project off the Yorkshire coast. One of the world’s biggest (Round 3) wind farms, it was developed by Irish company, Mainstream Renewable Power, who also developed the Neart Na Gaoithe zone off the East coast of Scotland prior to its recent sale to EDF.

When it comes to maintaining wind farms, Irish companies come to the fore. Irish Sea Contractors work with Ørsted to provide subsea inspections for its offshore assets around the UK coast. The same company is also leading on innovation in the subsea cable repair supply chain with its patented Habitat solution. Other Irish companies, such as Xocean, use unique Unmanned Surface Vehicles to provide seabed mapping and turnkey data collection services for the offshore wind industry. Furthermore, Irish companies bring excellent geotechnical and environmental engineering experience to the offshore wind industry. For example, companies such as Gavin and Doherty Geosolutions work with offshore wind developers to identify uncertainties, risks and challenges in the design, installation and operation of offshore wind farms such as Neart na Gaoithe.

Vessel design and build are also strong areas of Irish expertise. For example, Irish vessel builders such as Mooney Boats and Arklow Marine have substantial experience in building support vessels for the UK offshore wind industry, with several Irish companies also involved in vessel management.

With ever-increasing offshore wind generation, demand-side response services offered by GridBeyond are essential to ensure flexibility and a stable supply of electricity to the grid. The importance of grid solutions to the future of the energy industry is reflected in the establishment of an Enterprise Ireland Smart Grid cluster in 2018, which showcases collective Irish capability in this space. Increased requirements for grid connections and the construction of power transmission and substation infrastructure will also be a key element of the industry’s growth. Irish strength in this space can be seen in companies such as H&MV Engineering, Kirby Group Engineering, Suir Engineering and Gaeltec Utilities.

On the research front, Ireland’s universities and research centres such as the Centre for Marine and Renewable Energy (MaREI) have been at the cutting edge in the development and testing of next generation technologies and systems.

Irish companies are primed and well positioned to help the UK meet its 2030 targets, as was illustrated during a recent Enterprise Ireland and SSE Offshore Wind Exchange at SSE’s Glasgow office. An Irish delegation of 15 companies met with senior SSE executives to showcase Irish expertise, discuss SSE’s future project plans, and discuss how the Irish supply chain can support the development of the UK offshore wind industry.

With a new trading relationship between the UK and the EU on the horizon, Enterprise Ireland-backed companies remain wholeheartedly committed to working with and supporting our nearest neighbours in the development of its offshore wind industry. To further highlight this commitment to the UK market, Enterprise Ireland will host a UK offshore wind industry delegation to Ireland in March 2019 to deepen collaboration and highlight the crucial areas of support that the Irish supply chain can provide across the UK offshore wind industry.

For more information on Ireland’s capability in the offshore wind sector and on the UK delegation visit to Ireland, please contact Darragh Cotter in Enterprise Ireland’s London office at: Darragh.Cotter@enterprise-ireland.com

 

Considering the speed at which technology has unlocked so many of the world’s secrets, it’s extraordinary to think that we still know more about the surface of Mars than we do about what lies on our ocean seabeds.

Scientists estimate that a staggering 95% of the world’s oceans have still not been mapped. That is a lot of information we are missing out on. Yet it’s hardly surprising, given the huge complexity – not to mention cost – associated with capturing ocean data.

For more than a decade, James Ives struggled with this challenge. As the then CEO of an Irish-based marine energy firm, he relied on ocean data but found the process both time-consuming and very expensive. “As a customer,” he says, “I thought there had to be a better way.”

He was on to something. In 2016, Ives left his job to start a new ocean data services company named XOCEAN.

James Ives CEO XOCEAN

James Ives, CEO XOCEAN

Advantages of XOCEAN approach to ocean data services

Headquartered in the coastal town of Carlingford, around 90 km north of Dublin in Ireland, the company offers a range of turnkey data services for surveyors, companies and government agencies, such as hydrographic mapping, fisheries surveys, data harvesting and environmental monitoring. The firm offers this on a ‘no data, no fee’ basis.

“The big difference between XOCEAN and most other ocean data service providers is that we use marine robots known as Unmanned Surface Vessels (USVs),” says Ives, XOCEAN’s CEO. “This approach offers three major advantages. First, it’s safer, as no humans have to go offshore. Second, it’s more efficient as our USVs can operate and collect data non-stop, 24/7. And thirdly, it’s around one-third the cost of conventional methods.”

The company’s XO-450 model looks like a miniature catamaran. It’s about the same size as an average car (but around half the weight) with a solar hybrid power system that provides a range of around 1,500 nautical miles, operating continuously for up to 18 days at a time. The system includes a wave-piercing hull design to ensure stability for the 100 kg or so of sensors and other equipment necessary for commercial ocean data capture.

“What we offer is an over-the-horizon operation,” says Ives. “Regardless of where in the world the mission is taking place, we can monitor and operate the USVs from our base here in the north-east of Ireland.

“At the moment we’re focused on industrial users including companies in the oil and gas sector and government agencies responsible for monitoring fisheries and the environment,” he says. “Our sweet spot is the continental shelf region where most ocean-based economic activity takes place, for example offshore wind farm developments.”

In summer 2018, XOCEAN partnered with Ireland’s Marine Institute to collect data as part of the management of Irish fish stock resources. “The USV travelled 100 nautical miles out into the Celtic Sea and performed an acoustic survey that generated 110 gigabytes of high-quality data,” says Ives. “That information is now being used to provide a better understanding of our fish stock levels.”

The company also has its sights on the international market, where partnership with Enterprise Ireland – the Irish Government’s trade and innovation agency – has paved the way for discussions with potential customers in Canada, Norway and the UK.

“We designed the vessel so it can be transported by road,” says Ives. “For international applications, we simply package both boat and trailer into a standard container and ship to wherever it’s needed, anywhere in the world.”

Emphasis on innovation

Understandably, XOCEAN places a firm emphasis on innovation. “R&D is absolutely fundamental to what we do,” says Ives. “We offer a data collection service that’s based on cutting-edge technology, so we are constantly developing new and innovative applications and technologies. We’re in research all the time – non-stop.”

The firm has started to build out the asset, with a third USV under construction (scheduled to be ready by the end of 2018). For a company founded only last year, XOCEAN is already moving fast. “We’re in discussion with some very large companies and there’s a lot of excitement in the market so things look bright,” says Ives.

The ocean sector economy is absolutely enormous. Its potential is even bigger. According to the OECD, the ocean economy is currently worth more than $1.5 trillion but has the potential to double to more than $3 trillion by 2030.

“Yes, the potential is vast but it’s all underpinned by a need for sensible development and that is dependent on a supply of high quality, accurate information – that’s where we come in,” says XOCEAN’s Ives. “More data leads to better decisions and that is crucial to the development of the marine environment.”

中国,20181031 – 爱尔兰是欧洲发展最急速的经济体,且拥有欧洲最具创新性的公司,并因其在金融科技、消费品、医疗保健、国际服务及数码技术等广泛领域提供世界一流的创新产品和服务而享誉国际。Enterprise Ireland作为爱尔兰政府的贸易和创新机构,今天将开展为期六天的贸易代表团访问,参与香港金融科技周和上海首届中国国际进口博览会,并将 #IrishAdvantage 品牌推广至中国大陆和香港特别行政区。该贸易代表团由爱尔兰商业、企业暨创新部部长Heather Humphreys TD率领,旨在加强爱尔兰与大中华地区之间的贸易和投资往来。

 

Enterprise Ireland是全球第三大风险投资机构,其支持的45家领先的爱尔兰企业将参与此次贸易代表团,向中国大陆和香港展示爱尔兰的创新实力,提升爱尔兰的形象,以及向国际买家推广爱尔兰企业的创新能力和富有竞争力的优势。获Enterprise Ireland支持的公司将得到Enterprise Ireland北京、上海及香港办事处给予的支持,加速其在大中华地区 – 经济增长属全球最快的地区之一, 的业务发展。

 

在英国脱欧的背景下, Enterprise Ireland的主要策略性目标旨在为爱尔兰企业开拓全球贸易巿场,以扩大爱尔兰企业在多元化出口市场的影响力。2017年,Enterprise Ireland客户于大中华地区的出口额增长9.7%,达到创纪录的10.3亿欧元。鉴于这种强劲的增长势头和市场潜力,Enterprise Ireland已经制定宏大的目标,期望大中华地区出口额到2020年将增长40%,达到14.4亿欧元。

 

9家爱尔兰企业将以 #IrishAdvantage 品牌亮相中国国际进口博览会,#IrishAdvantage品牌是Enterprise Ireland为提升爱尔兰企业国际知名度的全球推广活动。这些即将参加首届中国国际进口博览会的企业包括Hostelworld、Glen Dimplex、Emerald Green Baby、Cartoon Saloon、PM Group及Irish Breeze。

 

作为全球第二大金融科技公司投资者(按交易量计),Enterprise Ireland亦将参加香港金融科技周。香港金融科技周作为一个重要平台,将展示爱尔兰的金融科技优势,并加强11家获Enterprise Ireland支持的金融科技公司(包括Know Your Customer、Global Shares、CurrencyFair、Fenergo及Corlytics)在香港和亚太地区的业务发展。爱尔兰作为金融、科技及投资者活动的全球枢纽,是金融科技创新的温床,能协助金融业应对各种挑战和机遇,包括银行业数码化、新型支付模式, 以及不断变化的合规要求等。

 

爱尔兰商业、企业暨创新部部长Heather Humphreys TD谈到此次代表团的重要性时表示:「爱尔兰正以前所未有的增长步伐, 赢得全球巿场的业务发展, 而我们此次的贸易代表团亦担当了一个重要的角色, 协助爱尔兰本土企业获得全球认可, 以及为出口贸易争取更大的成功。代表团到访香港金融科技周和中国国际进口博览会, 将有助提升获Enterprise Ireland 支持的爱尔兰公司拓展至中国大陆及香港的巿场。」

 

Heather Humphreys TD补充: 「爱尔兰热切希望透过采取具体的措施, 与中国加强合作,藉以支持自由贸易和全球化发展。我们参加中国国际进口博览会正是我们履行这一承诺的其中一步。我十分期待能借着此次的访问, 向关键的决策者推广爱尔兰拥有世界一流的创新产品和服务。」

 

Enterprise Ireland行政总裁Julie Sinnamon就当前环境下, 代表团出访目的和其重要性指出:「Enterprise Ireland客户正在打进较以往更多的国际巿场, 在英国脱欧的背景下, 我们的焦点将集中加大这幅度, 为他们开拓更多巿场。亚太地区为爱尔兰企业提供了庞大出口增长机会,特别是在中国这个最大的地区市场。我们深信,爱尔兰与中国的企业将互惠互利,因此我们积极参与香港金融科技周及中国国际进口博览会,以建立相关联系。」

 

Julie Sinnamon补充: 「爱尔兰公司以独特的方法与全球客户合作。 爱尔兰是世界上最灵活和最富知识的劳动力之一,且拥有前瞻性的思维方式, 以产品、服务和流程创新为推动成功的关键因素。 此外, 爱尔兰公司一直以来都能满足全球市场领导者的需求,爱尔兰优势对国际买家来说是毋庸置疑的。」

 

Enterprise Ireland亚太地区总监Tom Cusack重申爱尔兰与中国企业合作的利益,他表示:「爱尔兰企业是欧洲最具创新性的企业之一, 爱尔兰优势为寻求与爱尔兰企业合作的中国企业带来巨大的好处。中国的影响力与日俱增,人民更加富裕, 经济和行业走向数码化,这一切均显示亚太地区的经济重要性对爱尔兰企业来说越具影响力。此次贸易代表团致力于为两个市场争取双赢,谋求双边利益。」

 

###

附录1

将参与中国国际进口博览会的公司

编号公司名称公司网站行业
1.PM Groupwww.pmgroup-global.com项目管理

PM Group是一家在欧洲、美国及亚洲营运的国际项目交付公司

2.PPIwww.ppiadhesiveproducts.com胶粘制品
3.Cartoon Saloonwww.cartoon.ie动画

Cartoon Saloon是一家位于爱尔兰基尔肯尼的爱尔兰动画工作室。曾获得三次奥斯卡最佳动画片提名。

4.Orbiswww.orbismes.com软件

Orbis International为世界各地的人们提供优质的眼部护理,改变人们的生活,帮助最需要的人群恢复视力。

5.Emerald Green Babywww.emeraldgreenbaby.com电子商务
6.Hostelworldwww.hostelworld.com旅游科技

青年旅社在线预订平台。

7.Glen Dimplexwww.glendimplex.com加热消费品

全球最大的加热电器制造商,在家用电器、制冷、通风及可再生能源解决方案方面占据重要的全球市场地位。

8.Irish Breezewww.irishbreeze.com消费品 – 湿纸巾

 

 

 

将参与香港金融科技周展示爱尔兰优势的爱尔兰金融科技公司(展馆C04

公司简介行业
CurrencyFair

www.currencyfair.com

CurrencyFair为个人和小型企业提供优惠的国际汇款服务,与银行相比,用户可节省高达八倍的费用。支付
Daon

www.daon.com

Daon是发展生物识别及身份认证技术和套用方案的环球先驱。生物识别技术及监管科技
Know Your Customer

www.knowyourcustomer.com

Know Your Customer 提供全面数码化的身份认证方案,能高速及准确地核实个人和企业背景。监管科技
Solgari

www.solgari.com

Solgari为34个国家的金融科技、金融服务及电子商务企业提供兼容的全渠道云端通讯服务。云端通讯
Fenergo

www.fenergo.com

Fenergo 是领先的客户周期管理、打击洗钱(AML)及了解你的客户(KYC)合规和客户数据管理方案供货商,专注为投资公司、大型企业,以及零售和私人银行提供服务。监管科技
Fineos

www.fineos.com

Fineos是市场领先以残疾、人寿、意外及健康为核心保险科技的供货商。保险科技
Global Shares

www.globalshares.com

Global Shares是全球领先的股权薪酬管理软件供货商,为全球100多个国家的公司及其员工提供股权计划管理,全球托管,股权交易和财务报告服务。金融服务
Corlytics

www.corlytics.com

Corlytics对监管风险的根本原因提供相关见解,使金融公司能够更好地规划其合规计划。监管科技
Intuition

www.intuitionpublishing.com

Intuition是全球领先的知识解决方案公司。 Intuition通过提供在线课程、服务、混合学习解决方案和知识管理技术,帮助客户优化其知识资本。电子学习
Priviti

www.priviti.com

Priviti帮助公司系统化及管理数据共享的详细同意书,以便他们与合作伙伴合作。 Priviti为每间公司都能够获得、查证和匹配多方之间在各个交易的同意书,同时提供合规审计跟踪、争议解决和分析服务。监管科技
Circit

https://www.circit.io/

 

Circit提供世界一流的审计确认平台, 深入了解审计过程中各方参与者的利益。

Circit可为公司节省高达80%的时间,并缩短整体审核时间。 此外,所有机构及用户身份都经过验证,以确保只有发出请求的审计员才能打开回馈,并在整个流程中详细追踪每个审计阶段。

监管科技

关于Enterprise Ireland

Enterprise Ireland是爱尔兰政府的贸易和创新机构。作为主要的资本投资者,我们投资于最具创新性, 贯穿不同发展阶段的爱尔兰公司,并将其与多个行业的国际客户联系起来。我们在全球拥有30多个办事处,我们的行业专家团队与国际企业密切接触,以了解和解决他们的业务需求。详情请浏覧:https://irishadvantage.com/why-work-with-us

 

如欲索取更多数据,请联络:

 

Stephanie Choi 蔡晓恩
Hume Brophy(香港)

 

电话:+852 9100 4747
电邮:stephanie.choi@humebrophy.com

Trade relationships between Scotland and Ireland are on the rise, with exports in each direction increasing by over 100% since 2012, according to research by Enterprise Ireland, the trade and innovation agency. In 2017, Irish-Scottish trade exceeded £1.8 billion, up by 130% over the last five years. In addition, Ireland is also the fourth largest Foreign Direct Investor in Scotland.

To strengthen these trade ties even further, Enterprise Ireland led a trade mission to Scotland to further discuss how businesses in both regions can better collaborate. Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, Heather Humphreys TD said, “Bilateral trade between Ireland and Scotland is strong, exceeding £1.8 billion in 2017 and there is immense opportunity to build on this for both countries. As Brexit negotiations continue, the Irish Government, through Enterprise Ireland, is committed to consolidating and growing Irish exports to Scotland and the UK now and into the future. Engaging with senior Scottish business and political leaders is critical to this effort: to realise the scale of this opportunity for both Scotland and Ireland.”

Given the close proximity of the markets and shared business culture, the Scottish trade mission reaffirmed the importance of strengthening trade relationships, particularly in the current Brexit climate. The two-day mission emphasised the opportunity for increased collaboration between the two countries and helped facilitate Irish and Scottish companies to explore areas of potential collaboration and power future economic growth between both countries.

Trade mission strengthens partnerships

56 Irish companies participated in the trade mission to Scotland, highlighting the strong business prospects for Scottish-Irish collaboration, as well as raising awareness of the scope and scale of the opportunities. With a focus on Ireland’s strengths across fintech, cleantech, agritech, automotive, construction and digital technology, Enterprise Ireland reinforced the synergy across the two countries especially focused on talent, ambition and innovation, as well as broader infrastructure opportunities in food and beverage manufacturing and offshore wind.

Deirdre McPartlin, Enterprise Ireland UK Manager, said: “Scotland and Ireland have always had strong trade ties and through the trade mission we aim to help deepen existing relations and grow the market opportunities that currently exist between the two countries particularly within construction, agritech, financial services and off-shore wind sectors.”

The mission focused on Glasgow and Edinburgh, as well as at various other sites around the country, including a visit to the state-of-the-art timber facility of Glennon Brothers, a company supported by Enterprise Ireland, in Troon. Seminars, roundtables and networking events covered themes including environmental performance, innovation in asset and wealth management, and the changing landscape of Scottish Farming.

McPartlin said: “Our trade mission to Manchester earlier this year and our trade mission to Scotland, reflects the strong appetite from Irish companies to continue to grow their customer base and diversify within the UK’s regions.”

This mission has already helped to facilitate trade deals between O2 and ScotRail, and ABP Food Group and Central Solutions, as well as IDASO opening its first UK office in Edinburgh. These are exciting developments despite the current uncertain economic climate, and Enterprise Ireland looks forward to welcoming further prosperity of Irish and Scottish trade relations.

Irish companies already export almost €1 billion to China.

A growing economy has positioned China as an attractive market for foreign companies from across the world. Rapid growth also presents challenges, which Irish companies active in a number of sectors are particularly well positioned to overcome.

Today, 300 companies supported by Enterprise Ireland, the national export agency, are conducting business in Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai and locations across the country, with that number expected to increase over the coming years.

With offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong (serving Shenzhen), Enterprise Ireland is well placed, both geographically and in terms of subject expertise, to support Irish companies to assist Chinese customers and partners.

Mary Kinnane of Enterprise Ireland says that the market is growing in size and importance for Irish companies.

“We currently have over 300 Irish companies engaged with China. Of those, over 150 have some form of physical presence here. Exports from those companies to China were worth €1.03 billion in 2017, accounting for 54% of all Enterprise Ireland client exports to the Asia-Pacific region.”

As an open economy, Ireland is supportive of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which fosters connectivity and spurs mutual economic growth. Business partnerships between China and Ireland also benefit from the country’s committed membership of the EU. As bilateral trade continues to grow year on year, new direct flights routes between China and Ireland in 2018 has also improved ease of doing business between both countries.

Enterprise Ireland focuses on key sectors in the region, including agritech, pharma, engineering, cleantech, medtech, fintech, ICT, and education, with Irish companies offering solutions that can assist China’s continuing growth.

Agritech

Ireland is known across the world for its agricultural heritage. Its reputation has developed into the 21st century, as a new generation of farmers, manufacturers and agri-scientists have established a deserved reputation for innovation across the entire agricultural value chain.

Irish manufacturers are world leaders in the specialised production of machinery that can help to consolidate and modernise Chinese farms, such as mixer wagons for feeding cattle, high-quality baling and wrapping systems and slurry spreaders.

Irish agri-engineering exports are now worth a quarter of a billion euro annually to the Irish economy.

New technologies targeted at improving farm management practices, such as advances in sensors and electronic record keeping, have been developed with the modern farmer in mind. With government support of mechanisation, these technologies, built to a world-class specification, are gaining traction in China.

Ireland also competes with the very best globally in terms of food quality, with extremely low rates of antibiotic usage, no hormone usage, very high standards of animal welfare, and full traceability from fork to farm.

Companies such as Dairymaster have led the way with significant investments in in-house R&D and a strong customer focus. Dairymaster’s latest innovation is a smartphone app that allows farmers to remotely control their milk tank. MagGrow has developed a technology that magnetises the droplets from a sprayer, causing them to bind better with plants, thereby reducing the amount of liquid required.

Engineering and cleantech

The People’s Bank of China estimates that reaching the Ministry of Environmental Protection’s targets for air and water quality will cost the country €255 billion over the next five years, while clean-up of soil pollution will cost a further €855 billion. Addressing this legacy issue is firmly in the crosshairs of Chinese businesses, and firms will need to recruit partners from around the world to meet these ambitious targets.

Ireland is fast becoming an international clean technology hub and its water treatment sector is delivering innovative and proven solutions to customers worldwide. Companies from the country are known for the highest standards of reliability, quality and delivery – whether on-site at major construction projects or in off-site manufacturing contracts. And with a thriving innovation ecosystem, the industry is continuing to break ground with new approaches to tackling some of the world’s most important sustainability challenges.

Pharma and healthcare

An ageing population, rising disposable income, healthcare reform and increasing non-communicable health issues have made China the world’s second-largest pharma market.

Meanwhile, Ireland’s medtech sector has become recognised internationally as innovative, integrated and globalised. With a uniquely collaborative ecosystem that spans global multinationals, start-ups, university researchers and government-supported R&D centres, Irish exporters deliver an unparalleled innovation advantage to their customers. Continually looking to the future, a new generation of medical device, diagnostic and digital health companies are pioneering design-led biomedical thinking to meet their customers’ evolving needs. Underpinning the medical technology industry, an established and lean Irish sub-supply sector and supply chain is capably servicing the exacting requirements of market leaders globally.

As domestic demand continues to grow, new GMP regulation is enforced, and domestic pharmaceutical companies increasingly seek growth opportunities beyond China, the number and complexity of pharmaceutical engineering projects is likely to continue to increase. These are areas in which Ireland, with its thriving pharma industry, is knowledgeable and has a proven track record of delivery.

Financial services

China’s rapid growth is continuing to create a booming middle class, with increased demands for pensions, social security and financial services.

Irish financial service companies have been through this process before and have the experience and know-how to help Chinese companies overcome the challenges they will face in this environment.

Payment gateways, global tax reclaim, enterprise data management backend office services (in which Dublin is already a world leader) and cloud solutions are all areas in which Enterprise Ireland companies can serve Chinese customers.

ICT

In ICT, China is experiencing huge demand for mobile, cloud and travel tech industries.

But that’s not all: rapid urbanisation has driven a spike in demand for smart city and Internet of Things solutions.

As the Silicon Valley of Europe, Irish companies are harnessing their engineering and tech expertise to drive real innovation in this space – and an outward-looking business community is keen to take this experience and share it with the rest of the world.

Education

Education is one of the largest contributors to non-food client exports in China, and 21 Irish education institutions have a direct market presence in the country.

To date, 49 high-functioning joint programmes have been approved by the Chinese Ministry of Education, as well as one joint college.

The Claddagh Scholarship Programme, the first and only national level scholarship programme designed exclusively for Chinese students includes in excess of 250 scholarships from 17 different education institutes at every level, across over a hundred different fields of study.

The Irish China Alumni Network (ICAN) with its own website platform and WeChat channel now has over 2,700 followers.

To date over 20 positions within Irish companies and organisations have been advertised to the alumni, so far nearly 60% of these positions have been successfully taken by ICAN members.

Consumer products

China is currently the world’s number one online shopping market, accounting for over 40% of the global ecommerce retail sales. It is currently dominated by third-party platforms – Alibaba, JD, QIY, Ctrip and Tencent, where consumers can purchase a wide range of products from many sellers.

In 2016, Alibaba and Tencent delivered record-breaking profits, signalling just how healthy China’s consumer market remains. The takeaways from Alibaba and Tencent’s results are not that they make a lot of money but how China’s most successful consumer-facing businesses have quite different business models to those in the West. Understanding what makes the models unique provides invaluable insights into what appeals to Chinese consumers and how successful brands are serving them, many of which can be replicated on smaller scales for foreign brands. Pyramid schemes are out, entertainment and mobile micro-payments are in.

Enterprise Ireland provides first-hand knowledge and experience of the consumer market and helps companies we support to validate their product in China, as well as with establishing an ecommerce presence where necessary.

Irish companies in China

David Byrne from Enterprise Ireland has said that the reasons for Ireland’s success can be attributed to relationships and product.

“Irish people are naturally very warm, friendly and open. We’re also very good at building relationships and that stands to us.

“But just because you’ve built that relationship doesn’t mean you can phone it in. Chinese business partners expect good quality and service – that is something they get with Irish companies.”

With high quality products and a gift for problem-solving, it’s time that Chinese businesses started the search for their Irish Advantage.

EPS Group is one of Ireland’s most successful environmental businesses, designing, constructing and operating water and wastewater treatment systems and pumping equipment to industrial, commercial and municipal customers across Ireland, the UK, and the Middle East.

EPS Group is also one of the few genuinely “end-to-end” service providers in the global water sector.

Innovation has been central to its success. In the 50 years since it was established, the group based in County Cork in Ireland, has grown from being a modest electrical and pumping services business into an internationally-exporting product and service provider, focused on the water, wastewater and clean technology sectors.

Headquartered in the town of Mallow, with locations in Ireland, the UK and Jordan, today EPS Group employs more than 450 people.

It is Ireland’s largest, privately owned Design-Build-Operate (DBO) partner for the delivery and operation of water and wastewater assets. Current long-term operational concessions cover over 300 treatment assets serving more than one million people.

The company has held contracts with all 34 water authorities in the Republic of Ireland (now transferred to the national utility Irish Water), as well as a significant share of the trader sub-market.

Innovation in action at EPS Group

EPS Group continues to innovate, recently winning a Digital Technology award at the European Business Awards for a submission that focused on the company’s newly opened Euro 4.5 million, 40,000 sq ft Centre of Design and Manufacturing Excellence.

The first of its kind for the water sector in Ireland and the UK, the new high-tech centre allows EPS to work in collaboration with clients and partners across the globe using multi-dimensional design platforms, Building Information Modelling (BIM) and digital demonstrations.

“A key differentiator for EPS Group is the fact that we have developed all of the skills the sector requires in-house. While our competitors, in most respects, outsource various activities, we are an end-to-end solutions provider, looking after every aspect of a project from concept through to aftercare,” says Patrick Buckley, managing director of EPS Group.

This breadth of expertise, allied to experience, gives EPS Group a key advantage, as does management’s commitment to always ‘take things a step further than our competitors,’” explains Buckley.

For example, EPS designs and preassembles plant, “to ensure we get it right first time on-site,” Buckley continues.

EPS is committed to ‘lean’ manufacturing, moving its design team onto the factory floor so that designers, fabricators and assembly teams can liaise for optimal efficiency. “Lean methodologies enable us to keep costs down, ultimately delivering value for our customer over their entire project,” Buckley says.

Why treating clients as strategic partners is key

The Group has a turnover of Euro 80 million and growth of around 10% per annum.  “Our development strategy is based on partnerships both up and down the supply chain,” adds Buckley.

This includes collaborative partnerships with customers and end users, for example with Tier 1 water treatment company Stantec Treatment, with whom it has a UK joint venture vehicle, MEPS.

EPS also forges collaborative partnerships to drive innovation, such as its licensing of sustainable waste water treatment process Nereda from Royal Haskoning DHV in the Netherlands, for use in Ireland and select projects in the UK and further afield.

“Existing biological wastewater treatment technology is over 100 years old. This is new technology for a new generation,” says Buckley. “Nereda is another example of the way in which EPS Group uses strategic partnerships to differentiate itself in the market. Whether by building such partnerships, or by investing in businesses that fit the profile of our growth strategy, it’s all part of our strong focus on growing in a sustainable way.”

Central to that is to only seek out projects where EPS Group can add value. “We go where customers value what we bring,” he says. “It’s a slower burn but it’s a more sustainable approach to business growth, as we continue our digital delivery journey”.

Liam Curran of Enterprise Ireland describes how innovative Irish companies are developing new solutions to meet emerging trends in water and wastewater management.

The need to reduce energy usage is paramount, says Liam Curran, senior technologist at Enterprise Ireland.

“The production of potable water and the treatment of waste water is highly energy intensive, mainly in relation to pumping and aeration. The industry is estimated to account for 2% – 4% of global energy usage, so anything that can improve on that is very welcome.”

Wastewater meets the Internet of Things

Increasingly the sector is turning to Internet of Things (IoT) technologies to drive efficiencies.

“IoT has become a hot topic right across the entire network, whether municipal or industrial. In the management of river catchment we are seeing the installation of smart monitors upstream to optimise everything from when to take water, to water quality, to the impact of weather events such as heavy rainfall.”

Smart devices are increasingly used in treatment plants. “In future you will be able to remotely monitor and manage plant in water facilities before sending water into potable water networks. Once there you’ll use detectors to monitor changes in pressure so precisely that you will be able to dig within a metre of a leak,” he says.

Once used, either commercially or domestically, smart devices in sewers will monitor waste water issues such as flooding. Wastewater treatment plants will be remotely monitored and run and, when waste water is treated and released, the receiving catchment will be monitored via IoT sensors for environmental issues.

Recovering resources from wastewater

Wastewater is increasingly in the spotlight as a result of the growing trend for emerging resource recovery. “In the past we saw wastewater as a problem to be disposed of. Now it’s all about resource recovery – extracting as much value as possible from wastewater,” says Curran.

This includes deriving value from the fact that waste water is typically 10% above ambient temperatures. “The focus now is on ways to recover that heat energy and, for example, using the heat from waste water leaving a building to heat that building,” he says.

“Waste water is also rich in organic matter that could be run through an anaerobic digester to create bio-methane which you could clean and burn as an energy source. Technologies already exist to recover nutrients such as phosphorous and nitrogen from waste water. And indeed the water itself can be recovered. Already places such as California, Florida and parts of the Middle East are treating waste water to a point where it is suitable for such reuse as irrigation or industrial purposes.”

Such activities will increasingly be demanded by companies keen to meet environmental standards too.

Emerging contaminants of concern include pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) and their removal is another area set for growth. “In the past the world hasn’t really considered the impact of PPCPs on water, but if you take medications such as antidepressants, hormone compounds or analgesics, they exit the body unchanged and enter into wastewater systems. If you go looking for aspirin downstream of municipal waste water systems, you will find it in rivers and lakes. Questions are increasingly being asked around the impact these compounds have on the environment.”

Antibiotics in wastewater

With concerns over antibiotic resistance growing worldwide, demand is growing for technologies to destroy antibiotics in wastewater too.

Anxiety is also growing about the impact of microplastics, whether from plastic packaging, microbeads in showergels or from synthetic clothing such as fleeces.  “The vast majority comes from degradation of plastic materials and run off from streets, because the sewer system and stormwater run offs are combined, but the fact remains that our water treatment plants are not designed to remove microplastics,” says Curran.

Irish companies turning wastewater green

A number of innovative Irish companies are working to solve such challenges however. OxyMem in Athlone has developed a low energy wastewater treatment using gas permeable membrane technology.

Ireland has strong national capability in relation to Internet of Things technologies too, as well as extensive data analytics expertise from companies such as Compass Informatics in Dublin, which has developed a product for municipal wastewater treatment biosolids management.

In Galway NVP Energy has developed wastewater treatment technology that removes organic pollution while producing biogas. It is currently in use at a meat processing plant in Lurgan. “One of the major advantages it offers is that they have taken 75% of the organic load off the existing treatment plant,” says Curran.

Ireland's Cleantech Industry

Committed to the EU

A member since 1973

1st for Flexibility

And adaptability of people

1st for Innovation

Among EU SMEs

3rd Most Resilient

Supply chain in the world

Ireland is fast becoming an international clean technology hub and its water treatment sector is delivering innovative and proven solutions to customers worldwide.

From low energy water purification technologies to concrete rainwater harvesting systems, specialist Irish companies can provide end-to-end solutions to meet the needs of infrastructure providers, utilities and industry internationally.

Irish companies are known for the highest standards of reliability, quality and delivery –whether on-site at major construction projects – or in off-site manufacturing contracts. And with a thriving innovation ecosystem, the industry is continuing to break ground with new approaches to tackling some of the world’s most important sustainability challenges.

Ireland's Cleantech Industry

Committed to the EU

A member since 1973

1st for Flexibility

And adaptability of people

1st for Innovation

Among EU SMEs

3rd Most Resilient

Supply chain in the world

Committed to the EU

A member since 1973

1st for Flexibility

And adaptability of people

1st for Innovation

Among EU SMEs

3rd Most Resilient

Supply chain in the world

Ireland is fast becoming an international clean technology hub and its water treatment sector is delivering innovative and proven solutions to customers worldwide.

From low energy water purification technologies to concrete rainwater harvesting systems, specialist Irish companies can provide end-to-end solutions to meet the needs of infrastructure providers, utilities and industry internationally.

Irish companies are known for the highest standards of reliability, quality and delivery –whether on-site at major construction projects – or in off-site manufacturing contracts. And with a thriving innovation ecosystem, the industry is continuing to break ground with new approaches to tackling some of the world’s most important sustainability challenges.

Enterprise Ireland connects international businesses with Irish companies.
Tell us what you need and we'll find your ideal business partner.

Why partner with Irish businesses?

Europe’s fastest growing economy

Irish businesses are globalised, forward-looking and ambitious – their partners benefit from this dynamic approach.

One of the world’s most innovative ecosystems

Irish small and medium businesses are the most innovative in Europe and are supported by a world-class R&D ecosystem.

A global technology centre

Irish companies grow up alongside the biggest names in tech, life sciences and financial services and meet the standards of global leaders.

A culture of entrepreneurship

Irish people are renowned for developing business opportunities worldwide and their ambition means a sharp focus on success.

Why partner with Irish businesses?

Europe’s fastest growing economy

Irish businesses are globalised, forward-looking and ambitious – their partners benefit from this dynamic approach.

One of the world’s most innovative ecosystems

Irish small and medium businesses are the most innovative in Europe and are supported by a world-class R&D ecosystem.

A global technology centre

Irish companies grow up alongside the biggest names in tech, life sciences and financial services and meet the standards of global leaders.

A culture of entrepreneurship

Irish people are renowned for developing business opportunities worldwide and their ambition means a sharp focus on success.

Learn more about Irish cleantech companies

EPS Group

EPS Group is a specialist wet infrastructure support services group of companies operating across the Republic of Ireland and the UK, one of the few genuine end-to-end service providers in the global water sector. Founded upon 50 years of experience, EPS has grown from a modest electrical and pumping services business into an innovative, internationally exporting product and service provider, now focused upon the water, wastewater and clean technology sectors. The Group provides services to municipal, industrial, commercial, agricultural and domestic clients and currently exports globally.

ResourceKraft

ResourceKraft is a global leader in hardware and software solutions for energy management, power quality and smart grid requirements. ResourceKraft develops innovative technology-driven products designed to assist organisations of all kinds, to measure and manage their energy usage. Established in 2007, ResourceKraft is built upon a foundation of experience in the electronics, computing and energy industries.

City Analysts Ltd

City Analysts are leading environmental laboratories providing fully accredited analytical testing and monitoring services to both the public and private sectors. We provide sampling and collection services from our laboratories in Dublin and Shannon. We are regarded as the water specialists covering all aspects of the aquatic environment from clean water to waste water and the soil it comes in contact with.

Hybrid Energy Solutions

Hybrid Energy Solutions designs and manufactures clean, cost-effective modular hybrid energy stations and Lithium-Ion battery energy storage systems (BESS). On or off-grid, HYbrid provides low carbon answers to the energy challenges of today. Our Hybrid Energy Stations (HES) can be rapidly deployed even in remote locations to provide scalable power generation and storage to meet any power demand. Applications range from remote telecom base stations to utility grids and generation options include wind and solar in addition to diesel or gas fuel. All with reliable, continuous output.

Enva

Enva specialises in providing innovative, efficient and cost-effective solutions for water treatment, waste management and laboratory testing. Our purpose is to help our clients run clean, safe, compliant and efficient operations, while minimising their environmental impact. We are passionate about resource recovery and we’re constantly developing new ways to convert wastes into valuable materials. So beyond meeting regulatory and compliance requirements, we also ensure that our clients minimise their impact on environment.

GridBeyond

GridBeyond, founded in 2007, is a leading provider of demand side response and holistic energy management technology for large industrial and commercial clients.

By implementing GridBeyond’s high end technology platform, businesses are able to access and automate energy controls to participate in fast-responding demand side management programmes, energy optimisation, energy trading and peak avoidance. All of which enable numerous levels of new revenues and cost savings, as well as unique insights and benchmarking into on-site energy performance.

Businesses using GridBeyond’s technology help to balance the electricity grid, enabling the integration of more renewables.

How we can help

Enterprise Ireland is the Irish Government’s trade and innovation agency. Our goal is to build successful, long-term business relationships between international companies and Irish partners.

Access to Innovation

As one of the world’s largest seed capital investors, we help develop a pipeline of cutting edge Irish companies.

Connect to Businesses

Our industry experts understand your requirements, and match them you with a shortlist of Irish partners that can deliver on them.

Get Direct Introductions

We make direct introductions to the right people in Irish companies, enhancing and simplifying your experience.

Access to Innovation

As one of the world’s largest seed capital investors, we help develop a pipeline of cutting edge Irish companies.

Connect to Businesses

Our industry experts understand your requirements, and match them you with a shortlist of Irish partners that can deliver on them.

Get Direct Introductions

We make direct introductions to the right people in Irish companies, enhancing and simplifying your experience.

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