10TH JANUARY, 2022

What makes Dublin so innovative?

Dublin: Where start-ups and big tech thrive together

“When I die, Dublin will be written in my heart.” - James Joyce

As capital cities go, Dublin is up there with the best of them. Vibrant, forward-thinking and diverse, it’s home to around 1,300,000 people - as well as many of the world’s biggest names in finance and technology.

Of course, the city has its own unique challenges just like anywhere else. But if there’s one thing we do know, it’s that Dublin is incredibly innovative - and a great place to do business.

Home to Big Tech

Big names like Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Airbnb and Tinder have all based themselves in Dublin. One reason for this is the Irish government’s Foreign Direct Investment arm, designed to attract new tech companies in. And of course, there’s also the very appealing 12.5% rate of Corporation Tax.

In turn, these massive tech giants have encouraged regeneration in the city, decreased unemployment rates and helped to skill up the local workforce. Innovation has bred innovation, and Dublin is reaping the rewards.

A place where start-ups can grow

“You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing and falling over.”  - Richard Branson, Virgin Group Founder

Dublin’s not just for the big names though. Start-ups (particularly pre-Covid) are booming too, again thanks to a skilled, educated workforce and favourable tax regime.

According to Ideamotive, there are currently around 2,500 start-ups operating in Dublin, as well as around 200 global high tech enterprises.

CEO of Property District and founder of PropTech Ireland, Carol Tallon, has pointed out how household tech names in Dublin have fuelled the start-up culture:

“They’ve enabled innovation and ensured that this is rewarded. They’ve also spawned new start-ups to solve problems that arise out of tech advances that they’re not willing to live with”, she said.

Aiming to accelerate and enhance Ireland’s start-up ecosystem, a new hub - DogPatch Labs - was launched in 2015. Going from strength to strength since then, they’ve partnered with several tech giants over the last few years. These include Google and Pivotal, who themselves recognise the importance of supporting SMEs and start-ups, whilst further integrating into the city’s technology scene.

A relatively young population

The population of Dublin is now estimated to be around 1.43 million, 28.5% of the total population. The average age of people living in Dublin city is just 37.9 years old. For tech companies in particular, this is ideal.

Millennials (those born since 1982) have an affinity with technology as they’ve grown up with it from childhood. Where older generations may adapt more slowly to an ever-evolving technology environment, millennials and Gen Z’s may grasp new technologies more willingly.

Of course, it’s important not to discriminate. Assuming that all young people are amazing at all things tech is a pretty sweeping generalisation. But where processes, priorities and technologies are always changing, younger workers are typically very dynamic. And of course, with the economy struggling back in the face of COVID-19, such dynamism can be an advantage in what is now an incredibly fast-paced work environment.

Younger people also tend to be fresh and innovative in their approach. Having only recently left school, college or university, they’re used to learning a lot of new stuff in a short amount of time. They’ve also not had a chance to become stuck in their ways or jaded by the stresses of everyday life! Thanks to this fact, young people are also a bit of a blank slate, and what they lack in experience is more than made up for in enthusiasm. This makes them ‘mouldable’ into what companies really need, in terms of new ideas and culture.

The availability of R&D support

A robust and growing RDI environment is thriving in Ireland, with a strong Intellectual Property (IP) regime too.

IDA Ireland leads the way in RDI development by allocating funding support for a huge range of exciting and innovative projects. It also helps companies partner up with organisations like Enterprise Ireland, Sustainable Energy Authority Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland to further broaden their innovative horizons.

As well as RDI funding, IDA Ireland also supports businesses directly, through training and employment grants. Furthermore, it works with companies to make sure they have the facilities and resources needed to grow their operations.

In addition to this, the Irish government has long promoted company innovation and growth by offering R&D Tax Credits to help meet the costs of scientific and technological research. As Ireland is part of the European Union, it can also benefit from the wide variety of EU-wide R&D grants.

R&D Tax Credits are available to all Ireland-based businesses - and can easily be worth thousands

R&D Tax Credits are an essential way to fund innovation. From designing and building new products and services to revamping something that already exists, it’s open to all companies in Ireland.

Backed by Revenue, R&D Tax Credits address the fact that innovation is good for the economy, which is why it has aways been a generous scheme from the off. As long as some advancement has been made recently in science or technology (that a competent professional couldn’t easily solve) then R&D Tax Credits could well follow.

So how generous is the scheme? Very, is the answer!

Qualifying Ireland-based companies that have incurred eligible R&D costs can claim a 25% credit in respect of these costs, set against their Corporation Tax bill. In some cases, a cash credit can be paid instead.

Although it is possible to make an R&D Tax Credits claim yourself using the Revenue Online Service, we strongly advise against this. The process is tough, with many pitfalls and little support, so your chance of success is drastically reduced. It’s also extremely easy to miss off eligible costs, simply because they’re not obvious, which can mean losing out on thousands of euros you’re rightfully entitled to. This is where Tax Cloud is worth its weight in gold.

Tax Cloud helps you put together an accurate, maximised R&D Tax Credits claim

Expertly developed by the knowledgeable team of accountants and consultants at Myriad Associates, the Tax Cloud calculator will help you see at a glance how much your claim may be worth. Making a claim is then incredibly easy; you simply sign up and follow the steps to enter your company’s R&D figures, project details and your technical report. After full checks are made, it’s then sent off to Revenue.

Supported by the Myriad specialists from start to finish, Tax Cloud is a brilliantly cost-effective alternative to the full consultancy service. The portal is also cloud-based, so is accessible on any internet-connected device.

Why not have an informal chat with the team on +353 1 556 2001 or send us a message. We’ll be happy to discuss anything you’d like to know about Tax Cloud or R&D Tax Credits in general. Get your claim started today!

Barrie Dowsett, ACMA, GCMA
Author Barrie Dowsett, ACMA, GCMA CEO, Tax Cloud
Start your Tax Cloud claim now Discover if you qualify and ensure your R&D tax claim is maximised. Get started
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Meet some of the team behind Tax Cloud

Barrie Dowsett Barrie Dowsett ACMA CGMA Chief Executive Officer
Jillian Chambers Jillian Chambers Technical Analyst/Writer
Lauren Olson Lauren Olson Technical Analyst Manager
Rabia Mohammad Rabia Mohammad Corporate Tax Associate