We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

growth spurt

These are the businesses you want to be in across Ireland right now

Big or small, north or south – we have the figures for them all.

RETAIL AND HOSPITALITY businesses have the best prospects of any industries across the island of Ireland, according to a comprehensive trade survey.

But enterprises in the Republic – especially exporters and those involved in cross-border trade – have been faring much better than their counterparts in the north.

The latest InterTradeIreland business monitor, the largest survey of its kind for the island, found the vast majority of firms were either holding steady or growing for the latest period.

Businesses in the leisure, hotels and catering sector were the most bullish about their conditions with 44% of those surveyed responding they were in expansion mode and 15% describing that growth as moderate to rapid.

The same share of enterprises in the retail and distribution fields said they were growing, but a larger share within the sector described themselves as in a state of “survival at all costs”.

According to the survey, the industry that was struggling the most was the construction trade with 21% of all businesses reporting they were barely holding on.

Another survey out today showed growth in the construction sector had slowed to its lowest level since October 2013.

InterTrade InterTradeIreland InterTradeIreland

Size matters

The InterTradeIreland survey also showed medium-sized businesses, those with 50 or more workers, were enjoying the best growth.

They were the most likely to report plans to increase their workforces over the next 12 months, with over one-third responding that they had plans to recruit staff.

Micro enterprises, which are classed as having 10 or less employees, reported the worst conditions. Only 16% of that sector said they expected to add to their payrolls.

InterTrade2 InterTradeIreland InterTradeIreland

North-south divide

However there remained a big gap in prospects between businesses in the north and south, with enterprises in the Republic significantly more likely to report they were expanding.

InterTradeIreland strategy and policy director Aidan Gough said it was clear there was a divide between firms in the two parts of the island when it came to growth, employment and sales.

READ: Lack of office space a real headache for companies looking to set up shop >

READ: Irish unemployment is THIS CLOSE to dropping below 10% >

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.