Engineering


17
Nov 13

BCD Engineering Firm Creates 40 New Jobs in Cork

BCDENGINEERING COMPANY BCD announced the creation of 40 new jobs resulting from a new multi-million euro vaccine plant project in the Asian market.

The north Cork company celebrated 30 years in business this year and currently employs 190 staff.

The jobs will be a mix of engineering and trades roles in the company’s design and manufacturing divisions. The announcement comes after recent pharmaceutical and biotechnology project wins in the Irish, UK and Belgium markets.

CEO Sean McGowan said the roles will be a mix of high value engineering positions working in the company’s process design areas, as well as a number of skilled crafts roles, including the recruitment of a number of apprentices across a variety of trades.

He said that it was a great boost for the company and the north Cork area, bringing the company’s head count to 230 employees.

“We continue to enjoy strong working relationships with some of the largest Irish players in the market that provide the backbone to our business,” said McGowan, who revealed the company is in advanced negotiations on a number of large Irish and European projects in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology sectors.

Despite the good news, the CEO highlighted how the scarcity of available engineers in Ireland may force the company to look overseas to fill a number of the roles.

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18
Sep 13

Burnside Eurocyl to create 25 jobs in Carlow, €3.5m expansion.

Irish family-owned company Burnside Eurocyl, which manufactures hydraulic cylinders, is to create up to 25 jobs as it is planning a €3.5m expansion of its manufacturing hub, supported by Enterprise Ireland. Brothers Tom and Anthony Byrne are on a mission to grow the business from its Carlow base and target new export makets.

With this €3.5m investment, Burnside Eurocyl is planning to take on new hires, expand its manufacturing facilities, upgrade R&D facilities, and train employees in ‘lean manufacturing’ techniques – the manufacturing way originally conceived by Toyota.

The ultimate goal, according to the Byrnes, will be for Burnside Eurocyl to increase its export business by 10pc per year.

At the minute, 95pc of all Burnside’s sales are exported to 16 countries across mainland Europe, the US and Canada. The firm recently started doing business in China and Russia.

Richard Bruton, TD, the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, is en-route to Burnside Eurocyl, where he is set to make a formal announcement at 4.30pm regarding the new jobs and the expansion.

Some of the jobs have already been filled, but Burnside Eurocyl is aiming to fill the remaining roles over the next 18 months, bringing total employment at the company to 170.

Burnside Eurocyl is a member of the Burnside group of companies founded by the Byrne family in Carlow Town in 1974.

Tom and Anthony Byrne set up Burnside Eurocyl in 1998, and the company operates from a purpose-built 80,000 sq-foot facility in Carlow Town, where it already employs 155 staff.

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11
Jul 13

More Dublin Jobs on the ‘Horizon’.

Project management and engineering skills company, “Horizon West”, is to create ten new jobs at a new site in Ballsbridge.

Founded in 2010, the Westport based firm announced that it is expanding its already 30-strong workforce as it opens its Dublin office today.

Horizon provides technical engineering services for Ireland’s SME and multinational manufacturing sector.  Included among these services is a serialisation programme which protects pharmaceutical companies against the problem of counterfeit drugs.

Founder and managing director Aidan Corcoran spoke of the expansion in a radio interview this morning. “The further we go, the clearer we need to be about our products. One of the current market drivers is the anti-counterfeiting measures that are requested by regulatory bodies across the world.”

Corcoran say the firm, which is supported by Enterprise Ireland, is recruiting five people immediately and an additional five in the next 18 months. “We’re looking for both experienced people and junior people who are looking to be trained up to work as part of a fun and winning team”.

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12
Jun 13

Irish firm signs agreement with Canadian company to develop gas processing businesses.

PM GroupAn Irish engineering firm has signed a deal with a Canadian counterpart to develop gas processing businesses across the globe.

PM Group said it has reached agreement with the Alberta-based Gas Liquids Engineering (GLE) to work together to open new markets for processing natural gas.

Details of the agreement were announced during an Enterprise Ireland trade mission to Canada which is being led by trade minister Joe Costello.

PM Group director Colm O’Mahony said the deal was “significant”.

“It will help GLE to smooth local fluctuations and enable both companies to continue to grow. We are currently active in bidding in several regions around the world,” he said.

Welcoming the announcement Minister Costello commented: “This agreement clearly demonstrates the opportunities that exist for collaboration between innovative Irish companies and successful international organisations.

“PM Group continues to provide an outstanding example of what can be achieved by ambitious Irish companies in global markets,” he added.

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11
Apr 13

Kells Stainless Limited inks agreement with Turkish engineering firm UMDE .

Kells Stainless Limited inks agreement with Turkish engineering firm UMDE

Kells Stainless Limited inks agreement with Turkish engineering firm UMDE
Ziya Gokcek, UMDE; John McKeon, MD, Kells Stainless; Julie Sinnamon, executive director, Enterprise Ireland; Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs, Eamon Gilmore, TD; and His Excellency Kenneth Thompson, Irish Ambassador to Turkey

The signing of the agreement has taken place during an Enterprise Ireland trade mission of 25 companies to Turkey, led by the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Eamon Gilmore, TD.

A pilot plant that will bring together technology developed by UMDE and Kells Stainless is now at the advanced planning stage. The plant will showcase the system and commercial benefits to the dairy, agricultural, and biodegradable waste sectors, initially in Turkey and Ireland.

All going well, the companies plan to increase employment as the project develops and gains momentum.

Gilmore said this agreement confirms the significance of opportunities for Irish companies in the growing and thriving market that is Turkey.

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28
Feb 13

Over 130 new jobs for Dublin

More than 130 new jobs have been announced by two companies in Dublin this morning.

Guidewire, a global provider of software solutions to the general insurance industry, is to create 75 new jobs at its global services and regional development centre in Blanchardstown, Dublin.

Ecocem Ireland, a cement company based at Dublin Port, also revealed plans to create 61 jobs in a new plant at the port.

Ecocem said 25 jobs will be created with further 36 indirect jobs being created though other Irish-based suppliers. The new plant will be used to bag the company’s eco-friendly cement.

Guidewire was founded in 2001 in Silicon Valley and established its Dublin location in July 2011, where it now employs 50 people.The latest expansion will make Guidewire Ireland the company’s largest office outside of the US and will bring to 125 the number of people the company expects to employ in Ireland.

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31
Jul 12

Windfarm holds jobs promise for Offaly

Pictured is Kevin O' Donovan, Element Power ,Sean Flemmimg, FF TD Laois-Offaly, and Charile Flanagan, TD, Laois-Offaly and Tim Cowhig, CEO Element Power. Photo Chris Bellew /Fennell PhotographyPictured is Kevin O’ Donovan, Element Power ,Sean Flemmimg, FF TD Laois-Offaly, and Charile Flanagan, TD, Laois-Offaly and Tim Cowhig, CEO Element Power. Photo Chris Bellew /Fennell Photography

National Grid UK, the operator of the UK electricity network, has confirmed that a firm grid connection of 3,000 megawatts has been awarded to global renewable energy developer, Element Power and this holds the prospect of a major jobs boost for Offaly and the Midlands region.

This is the first such dedicated UK connection offered to an Irish renewable energy exporter and enables Element Power to progress ‘Greenwire’ – a series of connected projects exporting wind power generated in the Midlands of Ireland to the UK via two independent subsea cables. ‘Firm’ connection means that the UK power market can take the output at all times, enabling €1.2billion worth of energy exports annually from the Irish economy.

Greenwire will involve a total spend of €8billion during the construction phase, of which a significant proportion will be spent in developing wind energy infrastructure in Ireland. It will result in the creation of an estimated 10,000 development and construction jobs and up to 3,000 long term jobs. A legacy interconnector between the two countries will also provide an enduring benefit.

Greenwire will deliver considerable direct benefits to the Midlands region as well as the national economy. Rental payments to local landowners combined with annual rates to the local authorities across the Midlands will amount to €50million each year.

Greenwire’ proposes the development of around forty separate wind farms across the Midlands. These will be linked together through underground cabling to a central collection point.

Up to 3000 megawatts (MW) of electrical power could then be exported from this point via two underground and subsea cables to UK grid connection points, Pentir in north Wales and Pembroke in south Wales. No new overhead power lines will be installed. The first 2000MW connection has been confirmed for 2017 and remaining 1000MW connection will be available for 2018.

The project will use the latest high voltage direct current (HVDC) technology, which allows for very efficient transfer of energy over long distances, and is offered by established companies such as Siemens and ABB. The cables will be laid in the verge of public roads on shore, in a similar manner to other services such as water, phone, or gas pipes. Offshore, the cable will be installed by specialised ships under the seabed of the Irish Sea.

The project will be totally independent of the Irish electricity grid and will involve absolutely no cost to the Irish taxpayer. It will however, enable Ireland to export in excess of €1.2billion of wind generated electricity annually to the UK.

UK National Grid has requested tThe Greenwire cables be sized to help offset the need for UK onshore grid reinforcements and enhance the level of interconnection between the Irish and UK power systems.

It is also intended to install fibre optic connection along the two undersea cables between the UK and Ireland and between each of the wind-farms which will itself create a new an substantial broadband network in its own right, significantly improving the prospects for attracting technology and data processing related industries to nearby towns.

Along with the existing 500MW EirGrid Interconnector and the 450MW Moyle Interconnector, the additional interconnection capacity created by Greenwire will give Ireland enormous additional security in its electricity supplies, helping attract foreign investment in energy sensitive industries.

Element Power’s Irish operation in Cork is headed up by Tim Cowhig and a team of experienced wind developers, previously of SWS Energy. The wider Northern European operation is led by Mike O’Neill, previously of RES Group. The company is backed by Hudson Clean Energy Partners, a leading global private equity firm with over $1billion in funding capital dedicated to investing in clean energy.

IDA Ireland is championing the development of Ireland’s renewable energy export industry, recognising that Ireland has wind resources far in excess of what is needed to meet its own renewable energy targets. IDA’s Clean Technologies Division sees the ‘export of electrons’ from Ireland to the UK and other European neighbours as a great opportunity for employment creation in Ireland.

Last month Irish Energy Minister Pat Rabbitte and UK Energy Minister, Charles Hendry agreed a formal Memorandum of Understanding on renewable energy trading between the two countries to be in place by the end of the year.

Element Power Ireland CEO, Tim Cowhig commented, “Greenwire is a particularly timely project which will enable the economy to harness our renewable energy resources to our economic advantage. The UK energy requirement has become Ireland’s opportunity, it makes perfect sense to capitalise on our geographic location and create an export industry. Greenwire is the enabling project that will allow this to happen boosting our national trade and generating considerable employment and benefit to the Midlands region.”

“In anticipation of getting UK grid connection, the company has been working in Ireland over the past two years identifying potential wind farm sites, speaking with local authorities, working with environmental consultants and reaching agreements with land-owners. This is an important step in enabling the project and helping us to meet our target of exporting renewable energy to the UK by 2018. We also spent considerable effort identifying the best grid points in Wales, and we designed our project to match the capacity available. Our connections are not triggering any new overhead line reinforcements in the UK, and this gives us confidence that we can connect by 2018, in time to help the UK meet their 2020 targets.”

The planning application for the Greenwire project will be made in consultation with local authorities and communities in the Midlands. Element Power is currently in consultation with An Bord Pleanála with a view making an application under the terms of the Strategic Infrastructural Development Act 2006.

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9
May 12

Irishman jacks China up on Green Opium

BUSINESS AND GOLF have enjoyed a long and fruitful relationship over the years and, in a country like China, where building relationships or “guanxi” is a vital part of the business culture, it is no surprise that entrepreneurs are also crying “fore!”

The Communist Party has yet to embrace wholeheartedly the ultra-capitalist sport known here as “Green Opium”, but the rising ranks of new wealthy in China love the game. And golf’s inclusion as an Olympic sport from 2016 will do a lot to boost its profile in Olympics-mad China.

Salthill native Mick Quaid (pictured) is currently building a major golf and entertainment facility not far from downtown Beijing, hoping to leverage China’s growing interest in golf into a potential market for Irish luxury products.

“China is not fully embracing golf yet, but it will happen. Education about golf is still zero but Chinese people love it when they try it,” said Quaid, a golf pro who has worked all over the world plying his trade.

“We aim to use the centre as a platform for trading for Irish products. I am trying to link with Irish companies to bring in Irish whiskey, Irish seafood, Irish cheese, high-end gifts. It’s a totally different concept – we sell Old Irish hickory-staff golf clubs, for example. I would like to be able to attract people with the golf image; it’s a luxury,” he said.

Quaid has had a broad experience of the Chinese market since he came here first in 2002. The experience has been frustrating at times. He set up his first golf academy back in 2006 at National Training Centre in Beijing. However, as a government facility, he was not allowed to commercialise the academy and he moved back into coaching. He has also worked on setting up the Idaho-based Jack Nicklaus Academies of Golf business in China.

There are around 600 golf courses in China, which is not much when you consider there are 450 in Ireland, which has a population smaller than Chaoyang district in Beijing. But it’s a step up from the 1980s when there were only 20.

“It’s going to take time before the infrastructure is in place. There is no governing body. But things will change in the run-up to 2016, when golf becomes an Olympic event,” he said.

“We’re going to do things like bring Ernie Els over here, but with his wine, not his golf clubs. We’re bringing in a putter from Switzerland that’s $5,000, but we won’t sell one putter, we’ll sell his clothes, and so on. The Chinese go for this because it’s unique,” said Quaid.

Quaid’s architect father, Michael, will come from Ireland to draft an expo stand for use in the courtyard, where they will display Irish products, Irish holidays, Irish properties to the clientele at the centre.

“Ireland is in the news here since the Xi Jinping visit. Xi has been huge,” he said. “We’ll use golf as the entertainment, but we have conference area, high-end restaurant, accommodation, offices. And we want to have an Irish pub here too,” said Quaid. On the sporting side, there is a large driving range and they will have a six-hole golf course at the facility.

China is already home to the world’s largest golf course, Mission Hills in Shenzhen, which has 216 holes over 12 courses. The club started off in 1994 with a course designed by Jack Nicklaus.

The central government has put a ban on the construction of new golf courses because of land grabbing, where land was snatched by dodgy property developers, often with the connivance of corrupt local officials. This has led to social unrest as disenfranchised farmers took to the streets and demonstrate.

The primary motivation behind developing golf in China is the property market, because of the luxury villas built to accompany the courses.

China’s arable land is scarce, and the government is worried about a growing wealth gap between the rich of the cities and the poor in the countryside.

And there are patriotic reasons why China is taking to golf. The Chinese argue that the game actually originated in China in 945 and that Mongolian travellers took chuiwan – chui means to hit, and wan is a ball – to Europe.

The rules of the sport were laid down in a 1282 book called Wan Jing or Manual of Ball Games.

To teach the Chinese how to play the game, regardless of who invented it, Quaid charges 1,000 yuan (€121) per hour for coaching, but it has to be about more than the golf aspect. “We are here for the long term, but you won’t make money out of coaching, you make money out of trade. We want to help Irish companies to introduce Irish products into China,” said Quaid.

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20
Apr 12

Smiths Engineering gears up to create new jobs

Ballymena-based Smiths Engineering Works (NI) Ltd aims to create seven new jobs by 2014. As a result of its substantial investment, the family firm, established in 1962, has already secured its first export business to the Republic of Ireland and Scotland.

BALLYMENA based Smiths Engineering Works (NI) Ltd is poised to create new jobs with its establishment of a new export focused gear manufacturing and refurbishment division with support from Invest Northern Ireland.

As a result of its substantial investment, the family firm, founded in 1962, has already secured its first export business to the Republic of Ireland and Scotland. It aims to create seven new jobs by 2014.

The company currently offers engine remanufacturing, specialist engineering and contract maintenance services. With its new division, Smiths is aiming to position itself as the preferred gearbox service centre for the industrial and heavy plant equipment markets associated with Great Britain and Ireland’s rail, marine, wind energy and oil and gas sectors.

Invest NI has offered Smiths a range of financial and advisory support to help the company boost its overall performance and ability to compete for new business outside Northern Ireland.

Gren Armstrong, Manager of Invest NI’s North Eastern Regional Office, said: “This is an important investment by Smiths which has enabled the company to adopt a new strategic direction and capitalise on emerging opportunities particularly within the renewables sector.

“Recruiting two senior managers and five additional skilled engineers will provide economic benefits to the local community and help the company to achieve its growth objectives.”

Darwin Smith is the company’s Managing Director having recently taken over from his father.

Mr Smith said: “During our 50th year in business, the decision to take a greater export focused approach in our business activities was driven by the changing needs of our customer base.

“Diversifying into gear servicing will be a complementary but distinct service offering for which we have identified substantial market demand.

“Invest NI’s support has helped us to accelerate our expansion plans and enhance our export marketing capabilities and awareness of export opportunities. We aim to utilise our extensive network of industry contacts to secure new business and build on our sales to date,” he said.

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