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Press Statement


17 November 2017

CSO publishes Business in Ireland 2015

Large range of business statistics now available for analysis
  • Over 99% of enterprises are SMEs but they generate only 39% of gross value added (the value of goods & services produced in the economy)
  • The top 50 enterprises by value, generate 55% of business economy value added, while only accounting for 6% of employment
  • In 2015, 18,102 enterprises were created, while 15,316 enterprises ceased activity in 2014

Go to release: Business In Ireland 2015

The Central Statistics Office today (17th November, 2017) publishes the thematic Business in Ireland 2015 which outlines the key statistics for the Irish business economy in 2015. Business Demography data (largely based on administrative data from the Revenue Commissioners) are used to analyse the number of enterprises and employment across the five sectors of Industry, Construction, Distribution, Services and Financial & Insurance. This data is combined with the Structural Business surveys, which are run annually by the CSO.

Commenting on the publication, Statistician Barry Kelleher said: “Today’s publication provides a wealth of information on the structure of the business economy in Ireland. The publication is based on the latest Business Demography and Structural Business Survey statistics.

This publication provides answers to many key policy questions, such as:

  • the impact of SMEs on the Irish business economy - over 99% of enterprises are SMEs but contribute just under 40% gross value added
  • the impact of foreign owned enterprises – accounting for 63% of GVA in the Irish non-financial business economy
  • how concentrated is business economy value added creation in Ireland? – the top 50 enterprises by value generate 55% of value added in 2015
  • typical survival rates for new enterprises – 87% of enterprises survived one year in business and 67% survived for the 5 years ending in 2015"


The CSO would like to acknowledge and thank the many enterprises who completed their enterprise survey questionnaires. Without this extensive cooperation, this publication and a range of other important statistics would not be available. The CSO also wishes to acknowledge the contribution of the Revenue Commissioners, as the information provided by Revenue to the CSO is of critical importance in compiling these necessary outputs. All such administrative data provided is only used for statistical purposes, and we think you can see the benefits of this data sharing in this very informative publication. 

For further information contact:

Barry Kelleher (+353) 21 453 5208 or Keith McSweeney (+353) 21 453 5423

or email

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