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Official Launch of the Midlands ICT Cluster

Today, Ms Sinéad Pillion, Head of Operations, Ericsson Athlone and Industry Chair of the Midlands ICT Cluster Steering Committee marked the official launch of the Midlands ICT Cluster at an event held at the Ericsson Software Campus, Athlone, County Westmeath.

In launching the Cluster, Ms Pillion said “It’s a pleasure to officially launch the Midlands ICT Cluster this morning. The Midlands region is already home to over 400 thriving ICT businesses, employing thousands of people, and we aim to bring enterprise together with government agencies and academia for a triple-helix approach to supporting our ICT ecosystem. The development of industry clusters is widely recognised as a key driver of growth and resilience for regions in terms of employment generation, and our goal is to make the Midlands internationally recognised as a centre of excellence in Smart Connected Technologies, while highlighting the region as the ideal place to live, work and invest.”

The Cluster aims to realise the vision through the development and implementation of Midlands ICT Cluster Action Plan. SecondEdge Solutions Ltd have been appointed to undertake the development of the plan, with a suite of actions under three enabling themes:

  1. R&D and Ecosystem Development,
  2. Skills and Talent
  3. Marketing

The Midlands has for many years proven to be an attractive destination for ICT businesses, with multinationals such as Ericsson who have been present in Athlone for over 40 years. More recently, fast-growing tech companies such as Sidero, Zinkworks, N’Ware, Nostra and Skout have been joined by many innovative start-ups to create a region which now has the highest concentration of ICT professionals outside of Dublin.

Dr. Anne Cusack, Chair of the Midlands Regional Enterprise Plan Steering Committee, commented that “the ICT sector has been designated as a key growth sector in our regional enterprise plan, and the development of the ICT Cluster leverages the collective regional competencies in this area, serving to position the Midlands as a destination of choice for sectoral investors.”

Paul Madden, CEO, Zinkworks stated that “Zinkworks is proud to be a founding member of the Midlands ICT Cluster and see many great benefits from enhanced collaboration with Industry and University partners to jointly build on the vibrant ICT ecosystem in our region.”

Dr. Enda Fallon, Head of Department – Computer & Software Engineering, TUS noted that “The Midlands has the fundamental capabilities and values required to become a European region of technology excellence. As a Technological University in the heart of the region, TUS is delighted to partner with the Midlands ICT Cluster in order to realise this vast potential.”

Paying tribute to the her colleagues on the Steering Group, Orla Martin, Head of Enterprise, LEO Offaly, representing regional LEOs, “the development of this cluster marks a commitment between industry, Technological University of the Shannon – Midlands Midwest, enterprise agencies (EI, IDA) and the LEOs to work together, to learn from each other, and to grow the smart technologies base of the Midland Region, delivering on the ambition of the Midlands Regional Enterprise Plan”.

Sarah Morgan, Programme Manager, Midlands Regional Enterprise Development Office, expressed her “appreciation to all members of the Steering Committee and Working Groups, and to the ICT companies from across the region that contributed to the establishment of the cluster.”

For further information on the Midlands ICT Cluster, visit or contact your enterprise agency
• LEO Laois | Laois County Council
• LEO Westmeath | Westmeath County Council
• LEO Longford | Longford County Council
• LEO Offaly | Offaly County Council
• Enterprise Ireland
• IDA Ireland
• Technological University of the Shannon TUS

Members of the Midlands ICT Cluster Steering Committee at the official launch event held at the Ericsson Software Campus, Athlone

Pictured l to r:

  • Mark Atterbury, Enterprise Ireland
  • Dr Enda Fallon, Technological University of the Shannon (TUS)
  • John Costello, Midlands Regional Skills
  • Eileen O’Meara Hayes, Midlands Regional Enterprise Office
  • Aileen Cramer, Zinkworks
  • Paul Madden, Zinkworks
  • Pat Gallagher, Chief Executive, Westmeath County Council
  • Sinead Pillion, Ericsson
  • John Mee, Sidero
  • Orla Martin, Offaly Local Enterprise Office
  • Sarah Morgan, Midlands Regional Enterprise Office
  • Emmet Kavanagh,
  • Micaela Oster, Zinkworks

Not pictured:

  • Dr Anne Cusack, Chair of the Midlands Regional Enterprise Steering Committee
  • Michael Brougham, Enterprise Ireland
  • Brid Somers, IDA Ireland

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