Irish firms ‘very keen to innovate’

Over 80% of companies would rather partner with other firms in areas such as entering new markets and improving products rather than going it alone, a new survey has revealed.

Ireland fares positively in the annual global innovation study from energy giant, GE, the first year it has been included in the survey. The study’s main aim is to measure countries’ reaction and capability for innovation.

The latest edition ranks Ireland 16th out of 25 countries in terms of its framework for innovation, but notes that Irish firms want more supports and incentives from Government.

Nearly 90% of Irish firms say innovation is a strategic priority for their business, while respondents scored above average on a number of areas regarding views on business model innovation.

Speaking at the report’s launch, Enterprise Ireland chief Frank Ryan noted the amount of firms willing to partner to progress.

“The openness to collaboration of respondents — with 83% believing their firm would be moresuccessful at innovation through partnership than going it alone — is an important finding, because future export growth will be increasingly won by companies adapting a collaborative approach to product/service development and global deployment.”

Lisa Ainsworth, chief commercial officer for GE UK and& Ireland, said the survey shows Irish business is “very keen to innovate”.

“It is very encouraging to see that Irish businesses scored higher than the global average in terms of the attitude towards innovation and the desire to innovate. I believe this is a very positive message from Ireland Inc to the rest of the world.”

She said Irish businesses and the Government must “break down the barriers to innovation and create an environment that nurtures and promotes innovation”.

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