In the past few years, Ireland has boasted one of the best performing economies in the EU according to data from the European Commission. As the domestic technology Industry is driving the revitalisation of a once-stagnant Irish entrepreneurial culture, innovation in the country now rife.

In that spirit, we’ve highlighted five of Ireland’s most interesting home-grown companies:

Pointy

Pointy are trying to reinvigorate high-street retail by installing a device which connects between a barcode scanner or POS system and a till. The ‘Pointy Box’ uses this information to build up a website for the store with the products that have been scanned, as well as helping the products and business come up higher on Google searches. Connecting with Pointy also directs customers to their store using Google maps.

Pointy’s founders worked on the principle that products should be easier to find on the high-street rather than online, while they were also motivated to connect local retailers with the local market, side-stepping retail giants.

Cubic Telecom

Cubic Telecom have partnered with Audi, with a SIM card which creates an in-car Wi-Fi hotspot. They launched their Summer 2016 line of Q7, Q5, and A4 range with in-built Cubic Telecom technology and will then integrate it into all subsequent product lines.

Providing internet access while on the road, passengers and drivers in the car can easily use Google Street View, view car parking options and gain access to a number of infotainment features.

Playertek

Based in Dundalk, this sports technology company aims to bring professional-grade performance data analysis to the amateur leagues. Playertek produces wearable GPS vests designed to monitor key metrics during training and games. Competitors have focussed on implementing similar technology by partnering with professional sports teams, but Playertek aims to deliver the same standard of statistical analysis to amateur athletes at an affordable price.

GAA teams and amateur league football and rugby club players have had great success with the technology, as it’s said that data is easy to synchronise, view and upload to social media accounts. Mintel research highlights that around one fifth of RoI consumers currently use a Fitbit, Jawbone, or another type of tracking device to monitor their fitness, suggesting potential for this sector to further develop.

Fire Financial Services

A Fintech company founded by Colm Lyon, an online payments expert with 25 years of previous experience in banking and financial services, Fire Financial Services allows customers to make bank-free, person-to-person transactions using only a mobile phone. The goal is to fully digitise personal payments towards a cashless future, but the company faces strong competition in the online payments market from giants like Apple, Google and PayPal. According to Mintel’s Payments Methods: Online vs. Offline Irish 2016 report, half of Irish consumers already believe that a ‘cashless society’ is inevitable in the future.

Dingle Distillery

No list would be complete without mentioning one of the pioneering companies in Ireland’s famed distillation industry. The first whiskey was released in 2016 – the centenary of Irish independence – fittingly as it was also the first produced in Ireland outside the big three distillers, Midleton, Cooley and Bushmills. Dingle use a specially crafted still with a built-in bulge in the neck to produce its signature whiskey, unlike any in Ireland or Scotland. Dingle’s output is small, only two casks per day, but the company is trying to be the best, not the biggest. Mintel’s Whiskey and Dark Rum Irish 2016 report found that almost a third of RoI consumers prefer to drink whiskeys made in their own country.

James Thompson is a Research Analyst with a BA (Hons) and Post Graduate Diploma in Marketing. Upon joining Mintel in January 2017, James has been involved in the production of market intelligence reports covering a range of sectors including food and drink, lifestyles and retail.

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