Clare TD Pat Breen is leading an Enterprise Ireland delegation to the United States.
Minister for Employment and Small Business, Pat Breen, yesterday departed on a five-day Enterprise Ireland Trade Mission to the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul in Minnesota, one of the largest medtech clusters in the US.
Eighteen Irish life sciences companies are participating on the mission which aims to highlight Ireland as a key hub for innovative life sciences solutions and to explore business and research opportunities in the Twin Cities area where approximately 700 medtech companies are based.
Despite the global recession, the Irish life sciences sector has continued to grow and has evolved into one of the leading global clusters with direct employment of 50,000 people and exports of more than €50 billion annually.
Speaking before departing on the Trade Mission, Breen said: “Thirteen of the world’s top 15 leading medtech multinationals now have operations in Ireland but the most impressive progression in our system has been the emergence and growth of our own vibrant indigenous industry. Along with growing exports, this has facilitated an increase in jobs with a strong regional dispersion.
He added “There is a wealth of talent and investment in medtech in Minnesota and Enterprise Ireland’s Trade Mission programme includes many world class organisations such as Boston Scientific, Medtronic and Mayo Clinic. My aim is to increase engagement with local companies in the Twin Cities region and build upon our world-class reputation as a centre of excellence in manufacturing, and product and service development”.
Kevin Sherry, Executive Director Global Business Development, Enterprise Ireland commented “A priority for Enterprise Ireland is to ensure that companies start, scale and innovate, and Ireland’s life sciences sector truly reflects how well this is working. The triumph of the sector is not just down to the country being recognised globally as a leading manufacturing hub for medical technologies — it’s also down to the sector embracing innovation and collaboration as vital to its success. This Trade Mission to the Twin Cities is an enormous opportunity for further developing productive relationships and partnerships between indigenous and multinational enterprises that will enhance and grow this dynamic sector for the future”.
Of the 18 companies travelling, five are Sub-Supply (SS) companies and 13 are in the Finished Devices (FD) category. SS companies have a service that they can provide to medical device manufacturers while FD have a finished product to sell to medical device companies and healthcare providers.
A number of these companies will also attend the Medical Design and Manufacturing Conference in Minneapolis on Wednesday 21st and Thursday 22nd September. The conference is described as the Medtech innovation, communication and solution epicentre of the Midwest and will have over 600 exhibitors and 5,000 industry professionals in attendance.