Mixed fortunes on jobs front

The positive news that 350 new seasonal and full-time jobs are to be created was tempered yesterday by the loss of 140 positions at a Galway-based diagnostics company.

Beckman Coulter, the US multinational lab devices firm, announced yesterday it is to close its plant in Galway’s Mervue Business Park with the loss of 140 jobs.

The company, which has operated in Galway for more than 40 years, said the decision was taken following a “review of operations” by the plant’s parent company in recent months.

Approximately half of the Galway plant’s staff are to be offered the opportunity to move to its facility in Tulla, Co Clare, which it said would be unaffected by yesterday’s decision.

Production at the Galway plant will be phased out over the coming 12-15 months, the company said.

Meanwhile, 150 jobs are to be created in Waterford with the decision by another US company, West Pharmaceutical Services, to locate in the city as part of plans to expand its global manufacturing operations.

“Waterford is an ideal setting for this new plant given its business-friendly environment and the growing health science industry in the area,” said West chairman and chief executive Donald E Morel Jr.

Construction on the 44-acre site at Knockhouse on the Old Kilmeaden Road, which represents a €150m investment, is expected to begin in early 2015 and will act as the company’s centre of excellence for proprietary elastometric sheeting which is used to package insulin for use in pen injectors.

Elsewhere, high-street department store Brown Thomas announced that it was to create 200 seasonal jobs across a range of sales roles in the lead up to Christmas.


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