Skip to main content
  • GCID’s PorterShed supported the creation of 835 high-value sustainable jobs and hosted 1,200 events in only five years
  • Some €3.86m contribution to the national economic output
  • Inward investment brought to the region totalling €35m

The Galway City Innovation District (GCID) has launched a socio-economic impact study detailing the PorterShed’s impact on the local, regional and national economy between 2016 and 2021. Western Development Commission has supported GCID through the Western Investment Fund and collaboration on a number of regional projects.

KPMG carried out the report which outlines how the GCID has significantly contributed to the national economic output, created hundreds of jobs, and millions of euro in inward investment through its co-working and innovation space, the PorterShed.

One of the key figures from the report is that a total of some 835 jobs have been created through a combination of PorterShed employees, member companies, and indirect jobs created in the value chain as a result of PorterShed and member spending.

On the whole, employment created by members creates ~€49 million in employment income and contributes ~€14 million in taxes to the Exchequer. Plus, the report states that members have brought inward investment of ~€35 million to the region.

The PorterShed is well known as a hive of community activity, and according to the KPMG study, spending by attendees at the 1,200 PorterShed events from 2016-2021 contributed more than €3.86m to the national economic output.

What’s more, the report highlights how the PorterShed has helped support tech start-ups in Galway and the wider Western region by providing early stage supports, accelerator programmes and access to information and guidance around funding, mentoring, and day-to-day ecosystem supports like workshops and events.

Allan Mulrooney, Interim CEO of WDC said

The creation of high value sustainable jobs in the West of Ireland is fundamental to the growth across the region. We welcome today’s report and recognise that the Portershed project has been instrumental in building a community, facilitating innovation and creating world class companies, in turn bringing a demand for skills. The Western Development Commission has supported the Portershed since its inception through the Western Investment Fund and they have also become an important stakeholder in the ConnectedHubs network. This report leads the way for other hubs to realise their potential impact across communities all over Ireland.

Portershed economic report by KPMG
The launch of the Socio-economic impact study of the Portershed prepared for Galway City Innovation District by KPMG Photo:Andrew Downes, XPOSURE

One of the key stats in the report that supports this is that 40 percent of PorterShed members noted how their employment has grown by more than 5 members since joining the PorterShed. Additionally, between 2016 and 2018, the number of businesses in the West with 10 or fewer employees grew by 700 – and the PorterShed is active in its support of businesses of this size. Plus, the 22 companies who went through the PorterShed’s First Regional Accelerator, 13 companies went on to secure follow on funding of over €9m

The report also includes case studies from PorterShed members and alumni including Altocloud (acquired by Genesys in 2018) and Fleetops.

In 2016, the PorterShed provided Altocloud with the space to grow and the support needed to develop the business before it was ultimately acquired, and Genesys continues to be a corporate member through the company that acquired it, Genesys.

“The PorterShed was an integral part of Altocloud’s success and we at Genesys are delighted to continue to support the PorterShed as a corporate member,” Joe Smyth, Altocloud co-founder (and now SVP of R&D Digital and AI at Genesys) said in the report.

Fleetops is a current full-time member of the PoterShed, and the report outlines how it was through the PorterShed that the founders were introduced to their current CFO, Enterprise Ireland, and some of their initial investors.

The founders and the start-ups at the PorterShed like Altocloud and Fleetops are incredibly important to the whole story, and these innovators are what makes the community what it is today.

GCID/PorterShed CEO Mary Rodgers spoke about the launch of the report:

The PorterShed has been at the forefront of the indigenous tech and start-up scene in the West of Ireland since its foundation, and I’m thankful to be involved day to day. This study highlights clearly how the PorterShed has positively contributed to the local and national economy. The figures speak for themselves: 835 jobs created, €3.86 million in national economic output, and countless start-ups that we have helped along the way.

“It’s amazing to see the data backing up what we already know to be true – that we’re having an impact, making the founder journey easier and less lonely, and helping transform Galway into a place where people can choose to live, work, and succeed. Many thanks, too, to KPMG for carrying out this report and doing the due diligence to unearth the data that proves we are on the right course.”

Head of KPMG in Galway, Laurence May, said:

The work done by PorterShed supporting Galway’s growing tech community is phenomenal. The exceptional jobs numbers and economic figures outlined in our report speak to this. We’re very proud to continue supporting PorterShed through our multi-annual sponsorship agreement as part of our commitment to the wider business community in the West of Ireland”.

Enterprise Ireland have been a key stakeholder in the the PorterShed story since it’s incepiton in 2016, They have provided funding for the GCID expansion including the development of two new PorterShed buildings in Downtown Galway City Centre.

AIB is the main sponsor of GCID and has been a key player in the PorterShed from the get-go when they made the brave decision to back the innovation hub in 2015. KPMG, who carried out the report, are also pivotal sponsors and together with others such as SIRO/Vodafone as well as Portershed’s corporate members, they have provided fundamental backing at various stages of PorterShed’s journey. Each of their support have been crucial in the success of the PorterShed and, in turn, the success of the start-ups.

Evin Cusack, Head of AIB Galway & Mayo

“On behalf of all of us at AIB, I would like to congratulate the team at Portershed for their continued success in delivering high value employment and investment to the West of Ireland.  This success has cemented the reputation of the region’s tech ecosystem and this will be further enhanced by the increased scale in Portershed’s operations in in Galway.  Many thanks also to our Co-Sponsors at KPMG on the production of such a comprehensive and informative report.” 

The GCID and the PorterShed have received immense funding and support from so many other organizations over the years, like the Western Development Commission and so many other partners including the Galway Chamber, Galway City Council and Galway Local Enterprise Office.

In addition, the role of the PorterShed’s visionary founders, incredible voluntary board, and hardworking management team have been pivotal since day one.