Celebrating  St Patrick’s Day from the heart of Medtech in Ireland

Of the top 25 Medtech companies in the world, 18 are now based in Ireland. What is it that attracted not only St. Patrick but also so many of the world’s top Medtech players to this small island in the atlantic ocean?

St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated all over the world with parades taking place in at least 30 countries, from Ireland to the Caribbean island of Montserrat. St Patrick’s Day highlights the impact Ireland plays in global businesses as well as the huge potential that exists for further development and collaboration. Today, like the 70 million people worldwide who claim Irish ancestry, we celebrate what it means to do business in Ireland’s Medtech industry.

  1. Ireland’s Medtech Industry: Key Facts
  • Ireland attracts over half of all Medtech investments coming to Europe, employing a combined 29,000 people in the Medtech sector
  • Ireland is the second largest exporter of Medtech products in Europe, exporting €12.6 Billion in Medtech exports annually
  • Ireland is the only English speaking country in the European Union, Ireland is a great base for launching a global company


  1. Universities with an eye on industry

Ireland has today established itself as a major hub for the Medtech industry through university industry linkages, the emergence of Medtech incubation hubs supporting knowledge transfers, the establishment of start-ups, the emergence of a skilled labour pool and a strong international reputation derived from the success of multinationals based in Ireland such as Cook, Medtronic, Merit Medical, Boston Scientific, Zimmer Biomet and Creganna.

The third level education institutions in Ireland recognised the increasing importance of the Medtech sector in the region and the need for a greater pool of specialised labour. As such the National University of Ireland, Galway (NUIG) and the Galway Mayo Institute of Technology have developed important links with medical device companies operating in their region, providing research collaboration and skilled graduates ready to specialise in the medical device industry. The same is true for Limerick (through UL), Cork (UCC,CIT) and other Colleges.

  1. A Global hub for research

Ireland is a global hub for research. The Network of Excellence for Functional Biomaterials and the Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI) are both based  in Galway.

The establishment of the national medical technology innovation fellowship training programme, the Galway based initiative BioInnovate, enables participants to work directly with clinicians to develop new innovative therapies.

Investment in R&D through Science Foundation Ireland has allowed Ireland to develop significant facilities for medtech research, including Ireland’s first stem cell manufacturing centre at NUI Galway and the SFI CÚRAM Centre for Research in Medical Devices will position Ireland as the leader in developing medical device technologies which will provide affordable transformative solutions for chronic diseases. A key part of CÚRAM’s operation is to train the next generation of scientists, employees and entrepreneurs in this sector. It is already attracting new research talent into Ireland.

Tyndall National Institute, University College Cork, performs breakthrough research in photonics, electronics, micro-nano-technology and smart systems to deliver innovative solutions in Medtech.

The Cork based Healthcare Innovation Hub (HIHI) enables healthcare companies to increase the speed with which they can deliver commercial products and services to the Irish Health Service Executive (HSE) and test products in a real-life medical setting.

  1. A healthy start-up ecosystem

A diverse start-up ecosystem has developed in Ireland in recent years and attracts serious talent and investment from all over the world. A key advantage that Ireland offers Medtech start-ups is the opportunity to stay close to companies that may be suitors when it comes to acquisition or licensing.

  1. Ireland’s Medtech Network

Ireland plays host to a diverse Medtech network stretching from Cork to Galway, Limerick, Sligo and Dublin. These hubs are drivers of Medtech growth & innovation in diagnostics, orthopaedics, ophthalmic, vascular, connected health and homecare products. This highly networked ecosystem of more than 400 medtech companies is supported by industry, academic, clinical and government agencies.

The presence of such a closely knit Medtech cluster lies at the heart of the Irish medtech sector and provides the means through which global players and innovators can collaborate on research and product development.

  1. An International Gateway

With its thriving start-up network, highly skilled labour force, hub of major multinational Medtech companies, the only English speaking country in the European Union and a series of international airports that act as gateways to Ireland, indigenous and multinational Medtech companies are offered a strong platform from which they may launch or maintain global operations.

  1. Vision beyond the national boundaries

Ireland is second only to Germany as the largest exporter of medical technology in the EU. Operating within an EU member state such as Ireland offers many advantages including the elimination of currency fluctuations when trading in the Eurozone, the CE mark certification which is valid across the European trading area and that European citizens can move freely within the EU to live and work, increasing and diversifying the talent pool.


  1. Friendly country with a rich culture

To top it all off, Ireland is internationally recognised as a country ready to welcome visitors and new arrivals alike. Our culture of offering a hundred thousand welcomes, or céad míle fáilte, is known the world over.

We may be a small island, but we’ve made a big impact internationally. Our heritage has helped us forge an identity rich in culture, with great achievements, and political landmarks that put us on the map.

And why did St. Patrick come here – well that’s another long story of history and folklore that would require the whole of St Patrick’s day itself to figure out.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

 Brought to you by Synecco

About Synecco

Synecco founded in 2004 and located in Galway, is a global supplier of world-leading contract manufacture and design solutions for the medical device market. Synecco have proven to be the partner of choice for many medical device companies seeking design and engineering, component manufacture and assembly, as well as supply chain management solutions. Synecco is fully compliant to industry standard ISO 13485 focussed on developing and supplying innovative medical device solutions for our partners. Synecco has a diverse commercial client portfolio, from large MNC’s to well-funded start-ups.  For more information, visit www.synecco.com