Paul O’Connell leads charge for healthy hearts

Ireland and Munster rugby legend Paul O’Connell has rowed in behind a tech firm’s drive to improve the heart health of its global workforce.

Paul O’Connell leads charge for healthy hearts

Just days after captaining Ireland to a historic second Six Nations title in a row following a heart-stopping day of international rugby, O’Connell lined out to launch the Active Heart initiative in one of Ireland’s fastest growing technology companies.

Famed for his inspiring dressing room speeches, O’Connell also gave a pep talk to Zenith Technologies’ staff at the company’s global headquarters in Ringaskiddy, Co Cork, as they embarked on their health programme.

He praised the tech company for having the foresight to prioritise health awareness in its workforce of more than 460 people at its Cork offices, and across it worldwide office network in India, Singapore, China, USA, Germany, Belgium, and the UK.

“Not everyone can become a professional athlete or an inter-county player but everyone can be healthier, if they take pretty simple steps to do so,” said O’Connell.

“Every year, 100,000 cases of heart attack and stroke are diagnosed in Ireland and the sad fact is that the majority of these issues are avoidable. This initiative will raise funds, enable the Zenith team to live healthier lives and have some fun while doing so.”

Achieving work-life balance is important, said O’Connell, adding that it is refreshing to see a hi-tech company such Zenith, which requires demanding work across all time zones, putting such a premium on healthy lifestyles for their employees.

Zenith Technologies provides automation, process control, and manufacturing execution systems, products and services, to the top eight life sciences global multinationals.

The company developed its Active Heart initiative in conjunction with the Irish Heart Foundation.

The programme will encourage staff to exercise and to adopt healthier lifestyle choices.

The company intends to raise funds for heart health-related organisations around the world, beginning with the Irish Heart Foundation.

“It was entirely appropriate that the man who is synonymous with the word ‘heart’ in all its positive meanings with Ireland and Munster, should launch the initiative,” said Zenith’s managing director, Brendan O’Regan.

“His presence gives a great fillip to everyone involved. Our hope in Zenith Technologies is that people in our company take on board what Paul and the Irish Heart Foundation are saying. As well as integrating the new programme with our corporate activity, we will go on to raise monies for the Foundation, most likely in the research area, to assist their important work.”

Cork-based Zenith Technologies has more than doubled its workforce to more than 460 people around the world in the past five years.

Most of the company’s new recruits are experienced qualified automation engineers and recently qualified graduates.

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