Wednesday 19 June 2019

Tech firm 'dodged bullet' picking Ireland over UK

Patricia DuChene of Wrike in the Dublin office Picture: Gerry Mooney
Patricia DuChene of Wrike in the Dublin office Picture: Gerry Mooney
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

As Brexit bites US online software firm Wrike is counting its blessings for having chosen Ireland over the UK for its EMEA headquarters almost four years ago.

Founded in 2006, the Silicon Valley-based firm first set up a hub in Dublin in June 2015, but could as easily have chosen London or Amsterdam.

"When we were first deciding on where to set up in Europe, the draw was about who was already there and where could we pull from; there was just a better match in Dublin," said EMEA general manager Patricia DuChene.

"The reality is that somehow we had the foresight to plan on Dublin and not on London, which is where a lot of tech companies go. We're very happy we made that decision.

"With Brexit, there will obviously be some companies that will be migrating - to Dublin or to other parts of Ireland - but with them will come talent. Essentially, we dodged a bullet and look on it now as an opportunity for us.

"If anything, I'm closely tracking the firms that are choosing to move here now to compare candidate pools, quite frankly to see what talent is coming in."

The rapid expansion of other tech giants in Dublin in recent months, including Google, doesn't appear to intimate either. Wrike officially opened its new Dublin office at Dartmouth House on Grand Parade - close to Google's HQ - and is now seeking staff to fill the three-floor space. "A rising tide lifts all ships, because I think that we've benefited greatly from all of our new and expanding neighbours," said Ms DuChene.

"I'm looking at what companies and candidates to tell my recruiters to go and poach."

Over the last three years, Wrike has grown its total annual recurring revenue by 539pc from 2014 to 2017, earning a spot on Deloitte's Technology Fast 500 in North America for the fourth consecutive year in 2018. Its core product is a collaborative work management platform used by 18,000 organisations, including Google, Tiffany's and Jaguar.

With 84 employees in Dublin, Wrike plans to add at least another 50 over the next three years. Housing is an issue, but Ms Du Chene believes flexibility is the solution. She said "2019 and 2020 have got to be the years where Dublin and the greater parts of Ireland will truly embrace diverse working schedules.

"Commuting is just going to be something that people simply can't manage any more. Remote working is going to have to be something that people just get comfortable with, and companies support."

Irish Independent

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