Anthony Gurnee, CEO of Ardmore Shipping, always had an ambition to establish a shipping company, and the opportunity came in 2010 when he was living in Ireland. As well as a personal connection with Ireland and value for the lifestyle choice, he, and Ardmore, enjoyed a close relationship with the Irish Maritime Development Office from the outset.
The IMDO worked closely with Ardmore assisting with the establishment of the initial infrastructure, staffing and introductions to the Irish business community. It is important to feel connected when establishing a business whether it’s locally or abroad:
“Ireland has a distinctly international focus and relatively small business community so we feel we are connected and are benefiting from this in terms of networking and Ireland’s strong reputation internationally. We were attracted to Ireland because of its high quality infrastructure, willingness of government departments to listen and engage, as well as its proven fiscal and tax regime. There is a strong desire to raise the profile of the Irish Maritime industry at an international level and we are proud to be a part of it.”
One of the considerations for Ardmore prior to deciding where to locate was the fiscal and taxation regime where the company will operate. Ireland offers an attractive tax regime; initially through tonnage tax for vessels and, post Ardmore’s IPO in New York, with its ship management and administration activities located in Cork. Ireland has a lot to offer new enterprises setting up. The Irish Government continues to pursue a pro-business economic policy and provides a range of start-up funding and support programmes in addition to its competitive tax base.
Location and Infrastructure
“Ireland is a great place to locate an international business; its time zone is convenient for markets in Asia and Americas and its proximity to London, which is the global hub for shipping is a real advantage for us. It is also a very nice place to live and we have been able to attract high skilled shipping executives to move to Ireland and many Irish seafarers to return to work at home. ”
Ireland has undertaken a significant programme of investment in communications and technology infrastructure, third-level institution linkages, property developments and transportation networks to drive the growth of hubs of excellence in different regions throughout Ireland.
A proactive, highly educated and flexible workforce enables global businesses to adapt to ever-changing needs. Ireland’s young workforce is capable, highly adaptable, mobile and very committed to achievement. On setting up Ardmore Shipping was readily able to attract high quality finance and accounting staff, as well as attract a number of Irish seafarers to return to work at home.
“We have very high quality employees at our Cork office across finance to operations and with this team, and our other offices around the world, we’re able to compete with some of the biggest companies in the business”