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Facebook brings €400m to economy

Monster social media firm Facebook is worth well over €400m to the Irish economy, according to a report commissioned from Deloitte.

Speaking at Davos, Switzerland, last week, Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg -- a close friend of U2's Bono -- revealed that the social media firm was worth around €15.3bn to Europe and supported 232,000 jobs. The economic impact ranged from Facebook's direct spending on goods and services, to companies developing apps or selling more products through Facebook.

Around "three-quarters" of Facebook's entire €214m of direct spending on goods, services, wages, or taxes, goes on Ireland, according to the Deloitte report.

The report shows that Mark Zuckerberg's Facebook has boosted technical sales of new smartphones or fast broadband by around €100m in Ireland. A similar boost has been given to the local app design and creation industry here, with another €100m created through companies using Facebook to promote or shift their products online.

Facebook, which is thought to be limbering up for a massive €100bn IPO later this year, is keen to expand its Irish operations and has been linked with a number of major office blocks -- including the landmark Bank of Ireland former headquarters on Baggot Street in Dublin.

The IDA has pitched Ireland as a major hub for social media companies, attracting the likes of Twitter, Zynga and LinkedIn to join heavyweights like Google and Facebook.

Sunday Indo Business