Two international broadcasters looking to Dublin for EU operations after Brexit, reports

Two international broadcasters looking to Dublin for EU operations after Brexit, reports

Two international broadcasters are close to formally choosing Dublin as the location for their EU operations after Brexit.

It is understood that one broadcaster is currently seeking approval from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI), with another expected to start the process shortly.

The IDA has long-since identified the broadcasting sector as a target for post-Brexit relocation jobs and has been working in tandem with the BAI in pitching Dublin as a location to well-known international television companies.

If the UK crashes out of the EU with no deal and the country's regulator Ofcom is no longer recognised by the European Commission, broadcasters such as CNN, Discovery and National Geographic would need to find different regulatory approval for broadcasting in the EU.

A lot of companies are waiting to see the final terms of the UK's exit before making a relocation decision, but the IDA remains in talks with all relevant players.

The agency's head of content, consumer and business services, Shane Nolan, said discussions are only being held with big-name players.

At last week's publication of the IDA's 2018 operational results, the agency's chief executive Martin Shanahan said Ireland was now seeing a "Brexit dividend" in all job and investment announcements by overseas companies.

The IDA secured more than 55 investments - leading to more than 4,500 jobs - directly as a result of post-Brexit location decisions by companies last year. A total of 42 of those moves were by companies investing in Ireland for the first time. The agency said the number of first-time investors choosing Ireland as a location because of the UK leaving the EU is likely to increase.

Mr Shanahan also said that talks with broadcasting companies remained "ongoing".

There are approximately 1,300 international broadcasters with EU operations in the UK and Mr Nolan said the fact that the IDA remains engaged with all the major players is "encouraging".

However, Ireland faces huge competition from other EU countries to attract broadcasters looking to leave London. Chief among them is the Netherlands - home of MTV Europe and others - followed by Belgium and Luxembourg.

Mr Nolan said that while Ireland may lack a track record as a home for overseas broadcasters it has the infrastructure, an "amenable" regulator not dissimilar to Ofcom and an English-speaking population and workforce.

The IDA also said it can offer such companies real economies of scale from a Dublin switch.

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