KUKA Ireland celebrates 10 years of growth & innovation

Since setting up its Irish operation in 2014, KUKA’s Dundalk office has delivered automated technologies across the entire Irish manufacturing sector, in industries as diverse as biopharmaceuticals, medical devices, food and beverage, aerospace, metal fabrication, R&D and academia.

The rapid growth in Ireland, alongside a heightened awareness of the advantages of automated processes, has prompted the expansion of the KUKA facility footprint at the Brewery Business Park site. This expansion aims to accommodate the surge in activity and personnel, driven by the escalating demand for KUKA’s products and solutions, which continues to grow apace.

To celebrate this success, KUKA recently held an open house event over three days, when customers, partners and special guests were able to tour the expanded facility, network with industry peers and learn more about the leading automation solutions offered by KUKA Robotics.

The formal proceedings took place on Wednesday 24th April and were attended by special guests and dignitaries, including elected representatives from national and local government, IDA (Industrial Development Agency), Enterprise Ireland, IBEC, Academia and many end customers and partners.

KUKA was also honoured to welcome His Excellency the German Ambassador to Ireland, Cord Meier-Klodt who delivered a speech and cut the orange ribbon to officially open the extended offices.

KUKA Ireland CEO, Brian Cooney welcomed the distinguished guests and thanked his team for their support and hard work in delivering a successful event and for helping KUKA to grow and develop over the last ten years. He said: “As our business thrives within Ireland’s dynamic manufacturing landscape, expanding our Dundalk facility footprint and investing in refurbishment and expansion signifies not only our success, but also represents our commitment to continued growth and innovation. It is immensely satisfying to see our infrastructure evolve alongside our local achievements, empowering us to reach greater heights in the realm of innovative robotic technologies.”

In her address, Louth County Council Cathaoirleach, Paula Butterly said that robotics and automation technology are key to the growth of the manufacturing industry and in attracting young people and talent into this important sector and KUKA is playing a leading role in this.

Turlough McCormack from the IDA said: “This onsite investment is important in being able deliver automated technology solutions across Ireland. We operate in a very competitive manufacturing market

and we need robotics and automation, so KUKA is very much part of Ireland’s digital manufacturing transformation.”

In a heartfelt speech to the assembled KUKA staff and guests, German Ambassador to Ireland, Cord Meier-Klodt said: “I’m delighted to be here on this special occasion to celebrate a landmark event. KUKA is one of the most innovative, forward looking global companies in the high-tech sector, now with over 15,000 employees in over 100 locations and 50 countries around the world. But when you scratch below the surface you will still find much evidence of the values of a family business founded over 125 years ago, with a spirit of engineering, the backbone of German industrial wealth over the centuries in various sectors. It’s against this background that today we are celebrating the opening of the extended offices of KUKA Ireland.

“Today, KUKA is a recognized leader in the supply of robotics and automation to the Irish and Northern Irish market and plays an integral role to Ireland’s contemporary economic success story with Germany as its second biggest export market. Bravo and bless you, keep on the good work and don’t be ashamed of being successful. Keep the employees close to your heart, they will be the success of your company in the long run. God speed to all of you on this very special day and I wish you a very great future for KUKA, yourselves and for Germany as your partner.”

The Brewery Business Park, where KUKA is located, was developed on the site of the former McArdle Moore brewery, transformed into a vibrant business park. Brewing at Cambricville stretches deep into the history of Dundalk; vastly different from today’s modern brewing, bottling, and canning, and is renowned more recently to produce Double Diamond!

The refurbishment and expansion of the current Dundalk facility has enabled available floor space to double, incorporating a large demonstration area in which customers can immerse themselves in KUKA’s hardware and software, a boardroom, office and storage space and a reconfigured classroom to cater to KUKA’s trainees, from within industry and across their integrator network.

The refurbishment is impressive, and boasts a subtle nod to the rich, local industrial heritage, such as reclaimed bricks from the 19th century in the main lobby and a collection of prints from local archives to illustrate the history of the brewery building.

But it is not just building physical structures, says Cooney: “We’re creating opportunities for our local community. This expansion project has translated into new job opportunities, empowering individuals in our community with meaningful employment and contributing to the prosperity of our region. In addition, we have been able to make available two new internships to local students, have utilised local skills and employed local tradesmen. In doing that we are supporting their growth and creating a multiplier effect as money circulates within the local economy. As a result, they are witnessing the expansion of the KUKA brand within their community. The brand has become widely recognised in and around Co. Louth, and our progress and development are positively acknowledged within the local area.”

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