A parcel delivery firm has expanded its operations and announced plans to create 50 new jobs.
DPD Ireland revealed it has had to grow its distribution facility in Athlone, Co Westmeath, to meet demand in online business and internet shopping.
The express parcel carrier delivers 40,000 packages a night.
Brendan O'Neill, chief executive, said DPD's business is almost like a bellwether of the Irish economy.
"It directly reflects Ireland's changing economic environment," he said.
"DPD's customer base has become increasingly cost conscious - right across every sector. We've had to adapt quickly to that change. Through strong investment in research and development and technical innovation, we've improved efficiencies for DPD and for our customers."
Founded in 1986 with 10 depots, DPD now boasts a network of 38 depots throughout Ireland, employing more than 600 people.
It has 350 vehicles on the road, carrying over 8 million parcels a year, and contributes more than 40 million euro to the Irish economy.
It expects to create more than 50 new positions over the next 18 months.
Jobs Minister Richard Bruton said the new 50 jobs were a great boost for the region. "This is a company expanding through increased use of technology, R&D and innovation, and through the Action Plan for Jobs we will be seeking to encourage more businesses to follow this path. I congratulate all involved and wish them all the best for the future," he added.