A parcel delivery company has announced 700 new jobs as it looks to expand its nationwide operations.
DPD Ireland plans to open two additional sortation facilities and up to 2.5 million euro of investment.
There will be 150 new positions at the company headquarters in Athlone, with a further 550 drivers and operational personnel spread across the country.
Chief executive Des Travers said the opportunity had arisen owing to a spike in delivery services under the coronavirus pandemic.
He said: “Our services have played an important role in these unprecedented times, with consumers ordering more online due to coronavirus concerns.
“The new jobs will increase our workforce to almost 2,000, enabling us to continue to meet customer demand.”
Tanaiste and minister for employment Leo Varadkar has welcomed the news.
He said: “There is some good news today, and the news is that DPD are going to create 700 new jobs between now and the end of the year in their distribution network.
“150 jobs in Athlone which will be a big boost to the midlands, and the other 550 jobs are being created all around Ireland.
“It’s a real boost for our economy, a real vote of confidence in the future and I think it gives people hope that we can bounce back from this, we can make a full economic recovery in time.”
DPD plans to invest one million euro at its headquarters in Athlone and another one million in driver scanner technology.
It has invested a further 500,000 euro in doubling the size of its depots in Cork, Kildare and Meath.