Limerick is critical for Dell, says manager

Technology titan Dell considers Limerick critical to its success, despite cutting almost 2,000 jobs there six years ago, according to the head of its Irish operations.

Dell Ireland general manager Liam Halpin said his company was fully committed to Ireland, and Limerick in particular, as a place to do business and cited recent investment in the country as evidence of that commitment.

Speaking to the Irish Examiner at the Web Summit in Dublin, Mr Halpin said outside of the US, the firm had its greatest concentration of multi-functional roles in Ireland.

“What I’d say to people who question Dell’s commitment to Ireland, not only Limerick [is] you just need to look at some of the investments that we’ve made recently… Specifically when it comes to Limerick — Limerick continues to be a critical place for Dell.

“We run global operations and logistics from Limerick so everything that we buy globally is purchased from Limerick and then we have a Europe Middle East and Africa (EMEA) solutions centre based in Limerick which is involved in delivering the new Dell to customers in terms of data centre transformation. So Dell continues to remain committed to Ireland as a market and to Ireland as a location.”

In January 2009, Dell announced it was to move part of its manufacturing base from Limerick to the Polish city of Lodz with the loss of 1,900 jobs.

In addition to the jobs lost directly as a result of the decision, its impact was felt across the city and wider Munster region with a number of job losses at connected companies announced in its aftermath.

Mr Halpin, however, says the company’s commitment to Ireland is reflected in recent decisions to locate Dell Bank, which employs 250 people, in Dublin as well as a new research and development centre.

Meanwhile at the summit, the tech giant was yesterday promoting its Dell for Entrepreneurs programme which has helped 160 companies with a range of business needs in the last 11 months.

Elsewhere, the online payment company Stripe founded by Limerick brothers Patrick and John Collison announced that it is to be the long-term payment partner of GAAGO — the GAA’s online streaming service.

Speaking at the Summit, president and co-founder of Stripe, John Collison, said: “We’re very excited to be working with GAAGO to enable Gaelic Games fans to have access to the latest games wherever they are in the world. Whether fans just want to stream one game or subscribe for a season, Stripe’s payment solution ensures that they will be able to do so seamlessly.”

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