Three in five participants in the national JobBridge scheme secure employment following their internship, according to an independent evaluation report published today by Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Social Protection Minister Joan Burton. Conducted by Indecon Economic Consultants, the evaluation indicates that 61pc of interns progress to paid employment after completing their internship. According to the Government, the progression rate for JobBridge is among the best in Europe, where rates for similar internship schemes average 34pc. The Details of The JobBridge Report The report also reveals that 96pc of host organizations would recommend JobBridge to another employer. Eighty-nine percent of interns said JobBridge had provided them with new skills which would…

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Inclement March weather hits retail sales – Retail Excellence Ireland

The Retail Excellence Ireland Retail Sales Review for Q1 2013 shows that while the period started well, it got progressively worse. According to the organisation, retail sales were negatively impacted by the inclement weather in March, the introduction of the property tax and industrial relations uncertainty. The March weather had a significantly negative impact on garden centres (-33.82pc), footwear (-10.79pc) and ladies’ fashion (-7.94pc). The cold spell resulted in a +6.61pc lift in hot beverage sales in March. Home appliance sales jumped +18.00pc (average) over the quarter assisted by trading-up and the continued growth of coffee makers and food preparation sales. Meanwhile, the March Easter bank holiday weekend, which was…

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Kingspan profit up1

The Direct Selling Association of Ireland (DSAI) has released new figures that show a significant rise in the number of people turning to direct selling since the start of the recession, as a way to earn additional income. The new figures show a 121pc increase in distributor numbers since the Irish recession began in 2008, whilst sales throughout the industry for the same period have more than doubled, with three of the largest direct selling companies in Ireland reporting a 103pc increase in sales between 2008 and 2012. Members of the DSAI include Amway, Forever Living and Herbalif. In addition, the DSAI has revealed that there has been substantial rise…

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Irish alcohol market in decline

The alcohol market in Ireland is declining as it is hit by continued economic weakness, taxation increases and changing consumer behaviour, according to the Drinks Industry Group of Ireland’s (DIGI) annual ‘Drinks Market Performance Report’. The report, by Anthony Foley of Dublin City University’s Business School, found that the volume of bar sales of alcohol continued to decline by a further 6pc in 2012. The total decline in the volume of bar sales of alcohol over the past 5 years is now 32.7pc. This decline is having a significant impact on jobs in this employment-intensive sector, where over 6,000 bar jobs alone have been lost since 2009. The specialist off…

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Nua Healthcare stands out in autism provision accreditation

The National Autistic Society (NAS) UK has renewed Irish healthcare company Nua Healthcare’s quality autism provision accreditation. In 2009, Nua Healthcare was the first and only adult autism service in the Republic of Ireland to achieve accredited status and is the sole Irish autism service provider to receive accreditation from the organization this year. With 14 facilities in Kildare, Laois, Offaly, and Dublin, Nua Healthcare provides specialized residential, respite and day services to individuals with autistic spectrum disorders, borderline personality disorders, brain injuries and mental health issues. Nua Healthcare’s director of operations Noel Dunne and senior services manager, Liz O’ Neill met with the National Autistic Society in London earlier…

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Musgrave Wholesale Partners signs €6m contract with Debenhams Ireland

Musgrave Wholesale Partners has signed a contract worth €6m over three years to supply chilled, frozen and ambient foods to Debenhams Ireland. The deal will see Musgrave Wholesale Partners supply approximately 600 product lines directly to 11 Debenhams stores in Ireland, four of which are in Northern Ireland. “Musgrave Wholesale Partners has supplied Debenhams with chilled, frozen and ambient foods for nine years and we are delighted to extend our excellent working relationship for another three years,” said Noel Keeley, managing director of Musgrave Wholesale Partners. “At Musgrave Wholesale Partners we are committed to offering our customers best in class value, service and product range. This ongoing commitment combined with…

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Charles Gillanders, Quintillion and Liam Halpin, general manager, Dell Ireland

Dell has announced that it has been awarded a storage solution contract by hedge fund administration services provider Quintillion. Quintillion’s investment in Dell’s Compellent storage area network will allow multiple servers to be connected to a centralised pool of disk storage, allowing for improved system administration and easier data management. “Over the past six years Quintillion has continued to grow in size and stature,” said Charles Gillanders, Quintillion. “Throughout this time we have installed a number of new solutions based on our changing data needs but as the company grew so did our storage requirements. “The Dell data storage capabilities provided Quintillion with a solution which was realistically scalable for…

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Business confidence improved strongly at the start of 2013 with most indicators in IBEC’s latest business sentiment survey climbing to the highest levels since 2009. Sales and order book indicators point towards growth and one in four managers indicated that they would be hiring new employees in the coming quarter. IBEC chief economist Fergal O’Brien said the improvement in confidence was mainly due to recovery in the domestic economy. “Consumer spending and business investment made a positive contribution to growth in the second half of last year and CEOs expect this trend to continue into 2013. The Irish economy is clearly re-balancing and it is very positive to see the…

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Building materials group CRH has reported a 5pc drop in profit before tax for 2012 to €674m and its chief executive Myles Lee is to retire at the end of this year, having reached the age of 60. Sales revenue for the group went up by 3pc to reach €18.65bn. Lee, who has been at the helm for five years, said the results for 2012 reflected progress in CRH’s Americas operations helped by a strong recovery in residential construction and improving overall economic activity in the US. In contrast, he said, its European businesses had to contend with weakening consumer and investor confidence within the Eurozone. “Assuming no major financial…

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CCMA Ireland call centre jobs fair

Amazon, BSkyB, PayPal and EA Games are among the companies that will be taking part in the CCMA Ireland Contact & Shared Services Centre Jobs Fair later this month, at which more than 500 vacancies will be on offer. The event will take place in the Burlington Hotel in Dublin from 10am to 7pm on 26 February. Companies with vacancies that will be participating include: Amazon (Cork), Arise (Limerick), BSkyB (Dublin), CarTrawler (Dublin), Chill Insurance (Dublin), EA Games (Galway), eBay (Dublin), Eishtec (Waterford and Wexford), Marriott International Global Reservations & Customer Care (Cork), PayPal (Dublin and Dundalk), ServiceSource (Dublin), TrendMicro (Cork), VoxPro (Cork) and Zevas (Cork). A series of free seminars on getting …

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