Sectoral Strengths

Kerry is recognised as one of Ireland’s knowledge and innovation hubs, building a reputation for collaboration, expertise and leading industry development.

Innovation starts here

Dubbed ‘the land of saints and scholars’, Ireland is renowned for learning and continues to be at the forefront of advancements. The county of Kerry is home to some of Ireland’s most successful and innovative international companies and private/public sector enterprises, with this enterprise base widely dispersed through the county.

A small number of high-profile and long-established businesses, including Liebherr, Dairymaster, Kerry Group, Fexco and Astellas, are well known on the international stage, yet many of our homegrown enterprises have grown in rural locations and are not nearly as visible. There is a wealth of enterprise activity that is largely under the radar.

As the county becomes recognised as one of Ireland’s knowledge and innovation hubs, building a reputation for collaboration, expertise and leading industry development within the technology, engineering and education sectors, it offers unparalleled access to opportunities across industries with deep sector expertise, investment by major brands, rise of innovative start-ups, international access to new markets and a world-class skills pipeline, all backed by supportive local partners.

With a critical mass of high performing entrepreneurial businesses who have built sustainable revenue in these sectors, these strong knowledge clusters, collaborations and alliances form the backbone of Kerry’s economy and represent limitless potential for synergy and networks ready to be harnessed. They provide access to the right knowledge and the right people who inspire and lift ideas to innovate, and help promising businesses find funding.

Great minds meet in Kerry

There are more than 8,500 active enterprises in County Kerry, according to the Central Statistics Office. While most of those employ less than ten people, 600 Kerry based businesses employ between 10 and 500 people.

Flagship initiatives and Research Centres of Excellence put Kerry at the forefront of innovation and education. Located in distinct knowledge precincts such as Tralee and Killorglin, they provide vital research, education, development and innovative technology to drive advancement across fields such as Fintech, Agtech and Biotech.

Industry leading organisations located in Kerry include IMaR, the Intelligent Mechatronics and RFID Gateway Research Centre which partners with industries to deliver Internet of Things solutions and Shannon ABC which collaborates with biotech and life sciences industries to explore natural products with novel bioactive substances.

Newly opened in 2020, the RDI Hub is a world-class centre for design-led digital innovation. The first of its kind, it focuses on the digitisation, ideation and commercialisation of innovation and research in the fintech and related technologies sector.

Munster Technological University in conjunction with Dairymaster, McHale Engineering, Abbey Machinery and supported by Kerry County Council are developing the Agritech Centre of Excellence.

The project is a European first and will enable Ireland’s Agri Tech businesses to expand their global reach and position Kerry within Ireland at the forefront of the international Agri Tech industry.

Tech Industry Alliance is a newly created collaborative technology business cluster, formed by the merger of KerrySciTech and IT@Cork, who have combined into a single entity to better represent the interests of the region’s growing tech sector.

With a combined membership of nearly 300 businesses, this makes the new entity one of the largest member-led tech clusters in Ireland.

Kerry’s Strength Sectors include:

For associations, Ireland is located on the edge of Europe and is the only English-speaking country in the eurozone, providing an ideal hub for international associations to meet. Within Kerry, you will find access to leading research institutes and connections to academics who can facilitate strong education programmes, showcasing cutting-edge research and powerful knowledge sharing; leading to research innovations and breakthrough legacies that help shape the future. Events can be enhanced with access to key opinion leaders, high calibre guest speakers and technical touring.

By choosing Ireland and holding your event in Kerry, you can connect with award-winning researchers, numerous regional corporations and over 1,200+ multinationals from around the country, who have all come together as a nation to produce an international, multilingual melting pot of skills.