There has never been a better time for ambitious, indigenous businesses to develop in Dublin. A vibrant, urban region with significant potential, it is earning a reputation worldwide as an attractive destination to start and scale a business.
The most recent Global Cities Report - produced by management consulting company Kearney - ranked our capital highly in its Outlook Index, jumping 24 places to ninth, behind cities such as London, Singapore, San Francisco, Paris and Tokyo. This particular index highlights those primed to become the next generation of global hubs, thus positioning Dublin as a key base for companies looking to compete on a global scale.
Collaboration is essential in establishing Dublin as both a national catalyst for growth and as an international tier-one city.
At Enterprise Ireland we work with key stakeholders, including third-level colleges, Local Enterprise Offices and the four local authorities to ensure startup and scaling companies have access to appropriate supports at each stage of their enterprise journey.
As a region, Dublin has seen a transformation in the past eight years. With unemployment now below 5pc nationally and the fact many global corporates have established headquarters here, the demand for highly specialised skills and office space presents challenges. Enterprise Ireland's regional strategy, Powering the Regions, is focused on balanced regional development. Funding co-working and second site initiatives and promoting collaboration between regional hubs is central to this.
In recognition of this emerging trend, Enterprise Ireland has funded a strong network of enterprise centres and hubs across the Dublin region which are flourishing, innovating and providing flexible workspace for startup and expanding companies. Guinness Enterprise Centre, Spade kitchen incubator, Ghala DAC, Social and Local in Tallaght and the Social Innovation Hub are examples of recently funded projects.
Last month, Enterprise Ireland awarded more than €2m in regional enterprise development funding to develop The Collaboratory, an industry solutions hub in Blanchardstown, north-west Dublin. This workspace will support agile startups, scale-ups, SMEs and multinational companies within cyber security, internet of things and artificial intelligence, rapidly growing sectors here.
The flexible, co-working office market is thriving in Dublin and is as attractive for on-demand working space as other major European cities such as London, Paris and Stockholm.
The city and county's coastal geography means, too, that the high-growth ecosystem of SMEs and startups, especially in industries like fintech and ICT, can look at expanding within Ireland's regions as well as using its location to act as a gateway to markets overseas. Combined with the expert insights offered by the in-market teams operating across our network of 39 international offices, these businesses can properly explore their global ambition supported by Enterprise Ireland.
Dublin is a dynamic source of startup funding and SME support programmes. At the core of our regional strategy, 'Powering the Regions', is the commitment to boost innovation. Participating in events such as Techstars StartUp Week, powered by Dublin City Council, provides a valuable opportunity to promote awareness of our range of innovation supports.
In Dublin, Ireland's first technological university has received Enterprise Ireland funding to develop a national sectoral cluster. This will develop skills, enhance technology and productivity, and boost knowledge transfer for SMEs across the region. No matter what stage you are at, if you want your business to prosper you need to be in the best location with access to the very best resources.