The Western Development Commission today announced it has approved an almost €7 million across the region in 2019. In total, the WDC Investment Fund approved new investments for 44 businesses and community projects across the seven western counties under its remit over the past 12 months. The investments approved are across a wide range of high-tech sectors from artificial intelligence, fintech, medical devices, ICT as well as more traditional sectors such as food and tourism.
In Donegal, the fund supported Cerebreon Technologies, an enterprise software solution which uses image recognition technology and artificially intelligent algorithms to more accurately and efficiently carry out financial and administrative processes. The fund has also approved bridging finance for Drumhome Heritage Society which promotes the development of local heritage sites which will enable locals and tourists alike explore the sites such as the Drumhome monastic site, the Ballymagroarty monastic site and McGonigles fort.
Commenting on the record level of investment in the region, Tomas O’Siochan, CEO of the WDC said “the investment in 2019 builds on more than 20 years of investment in the region. In 2020 we have committed to additional investment in key sectors over the long term, to ensure the region continues to grow. Creating opportunities for those who live in the west and want to move or return to the west remains a core focus for the WDC.”
Other investments across the region include Cora Systems a global software company based in Co. Leitrim and Ovagen Group Ltd in Co. Mayo who are providing the world’s first commercially produced Germ-Free eggs for the Pharmaceutical industry.
Gillian Buckley Investment Manager with the Western Development Commission commented “The investments and loans approved by the Western Investment Fund will ensure that these companies and community projects have the money they need to realise their ambitious growth plans, supporting and creating much needed employment and services throughout the Western Region.”
The WDC Investment Fund has to date invested €56.7 million in 188 SMEs, Micro and Social/Community Enterprises in the region with over 5,000 people employed directly and indirectly in portfolio companies.
Minister for Rural Affairs Seán Canney TD said: “This record investment by the Western Development Commission will reap huge economic benefits in terms of growth and jobs. It also underlines the effectiveness of high-level collaboration between the Western Development Commission, the Atlantic Economic Corridor Taskforce and my own department, the Department of Rural and Community Development. This has been seen to great effect in particular with the Bia Innovator food science campus in Athenry in my own constituency of Galway East, where stakeholders have combined to deliver sustainable jobs in the region.”
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