Mayo based multinationals lobby for N5 upgrade

Allegan,Baxter,Coca-Cola and Hollister have over a number of years lobbied the Irish government on the need to upgrade the N5. Access in to and out of the region is key for their continued success.

The companies jointly, directly  employ 3,000 people and a further 6,000 indirectly. They export 90% of their €3bn output, and pay €350m in taxes here.

60% of Coke concentrate for the world, 100% of the world supply of Botox, and 70% of renal dialysis solution is transported via the N5.

A total of 100 containers from the factories use the route on a daily basis.

Its estimated that €230m, the equivalent of 8 months tax revenue from those companies would be needed for the upgrade.

Should the state finance such a project?

€ V £ Bad news for Irish business

With the € presently at £.95 sterling and the Bank of England stating that zero interest rates in the UK are a possibility,keeping sterling weak, Irish exporters to the UK are in trouble. We export 18% of our goods to our nearest neighbour(€16bn in 2007) while British tourists account for 50% of visitors here.

Its not surprising that Irish shoppers have been taking advantage of the value to be had across the Irish sea and up north. Not alone has the shopper benefitted from the changes in the exchange rates,recent changes in the VAT rates has seen a 6.5% difference emerging between the two jurisdictions. (21.5% in the Republic /15% in the UK).

Do you think we will have parity? (€1=£1)?

Kelloggs plan €2m advertising campaign for Special K

In anticipation that the public will feel guilty following the eating frenzy of Christmas,Kelloggs intend spending €2m advertising Special K,its low fat cereal,in January and February. Fifty years after it was introduced in the U.S., the cereal, made mainly from rice and wheat is a popular product for who want to lose weight. The 30- second ads will air on RTE, TV3, TV4, and Sky. Ads will also appear on bus sides, billboards and shopping trolley handles. Kelloggs, via Special K will also sponsor the U.S. and U.K. version of the reality TV series “Next Top Model” from January 19th. The show is seen by Kelloggs to fit well with the Special K ethos of glamour, fitness and feeling good.

The Tax Man keeping an eye on eBay sellers

Should you have to pay tax on things you sell on eBay?

The Revenue Commissioners think you should,but before you get alarmed they are targeting the “Power Sellers.”

Revenue estimate there are at least 10,000 such sellers in Ireland, and as is the case in Canada,they may force eBay to hand over personal information on them. In Canada they focused on those sellers who earned in excess of $1,000 a month for three consecutive months.

eBay has remained silent thus far,concerning Irish sellers. It charges a commission on every sale. Ireland has proven luctative.

One international “Power Seller” recently surpassed a million positive feedbacks. Should those people pay tax?

Opec to cut production

The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries(Opec) intend cutting oil production immediately in an attempt to halt the slide in prices. It is expected that Russia, the worlds second largest supplier,will work with the cartel to boost prices.

Opec,which controls 40% of the worlds oil supply have agreed between themselves to cut production by 2m barrels a day,but its believed that some member states have not followed through on this decision. The finger of blame is being pointed at Ecuador,Venezuela,Libya and Iran.

In recent times the price has fallen from $140 a barrel to $46 a barrel at the moment.

With the global downturn it is speculated that next year it could slide toward $30 a barrel.

Mr. Tayto heading for Libya

In an attempt to push turnover over the €100m mark Largo Foods has identified the Libyan market as a new market for the Tayto crisp.  Largo, who also produce and sell King, Hunky Dory’s,Sam Spudz,Perri, Chipsticks and Snacs, are involved in a joint-venture with a Libyan company who will produce and sell the Tayto crisp there. The product needs to be adapted to cater for the tastes of the Libyan market.(The crisps will be spicier). Largo has seen its share of the Irish market threatened by Walkers and Pringles in particular.

Largo acquired the Tayto brand in 2006 for €62m, from C&C. C&C wished to offload in order to devote its time and resources expanding its sales of Bulmers/Magners.

Can Ryanair capture Aer Lingus?

One of the most interesting Business stories in Ireland  is Ryanairs latest attempt to takeover Aer Lingus its main competitor here.

Ryanair presently owns 29.8% of Aer Lingus and last week tabled a €748m offer to buy the airline. This represents €1.40 per share,exactly half of their previous offer.

The Government and the Aer Lingus workers  own 40% of the shares(esot) in Aer Lingus.

Its fair to say that Aer Lingus are not enamoured with the bid as tabled, as they point to €1.3bn cash on the groups balance sheet.

Ryanair, on the other hand have “sweetened” the offer by stating they would create up to 1000 new jobs,would recognise the unions at the “new” Aer Lingus, and would give the state a guarantee on the Aer Lingus Heathrow slots.