Ireland: The MedTech R&D Green Zone

With an impressive track record, a burgeoning talent pool, and an open economy as well as business ecosystem, Ireland is poised to continue its emergence as an international medtech hub. A handful of powerhouses in the sector have celebrated anniversaries of their operations in the country, with Boston Scientific hitting 25 years, Medtronic logging 40, and Abbott 70. Many companies in fact cite their Ireland connection as a major factor in their transformation from straightforward medical device developers into global healthtech leaders.

IDA Ireland, the Irish’s government’s foreign investment arm, is largely responsible for attracting these big-name companies and/or laying the foundation for reliable success in the country. “We create long-term sustainable, successful employment and investment in Ireland,” said IDA Ireland’s Head of Medical Technologies, Rachel Shelly. “We have a very long track record of working with multinational companies. In the first instance, we encourage them to come and set up in Ireland, and after that, it’s helping them to really grow, build, and transform their operations over time.”

Become a Subscriber

Please purchase a subscription to continue reading this article.

Subscribe Now

The organization supports more than 1,500 companies employing roughly 275,000 people, and a third of those companies have surpassed two decades of collaboration with Ireland.

In 2020, approximately $345 million was put toward medtech R&D, with IDA offering its own baked-in incentives, such as a 25% tax credit for companies tapping into in-house R&D. This represents a critical component of the country’s strategy of ambitiously scaling up overall R&D to become a hard-to-ignore go-to in this space. Apart from enlarging all R&D capabilities, Ireland also prioritizes investment in digitalization and supporting sustainable solutions.