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Brexit prompts Newry firm to consider move to Dundalk

April 3, 2017

Brexit could prove beneficial for the town of Dundalk following news that online rug trader Kukoon.com (formerly The Rug House) may shift its business across the border from its current base in Newry.

Last month Craigavon-based pharmaceutical company Almac announced it was opening a premises in Dundalk to guarantee access to the EU market.  Now Kukoon.com has signaled it may follow suit.

Paul Vallely, who runs the business with his sister Claire, told The Belfast Telegraph that market uncertainty and potential trade tariffs made it impossible to plan ahead, and said he is considering moving his business with 27 staff to Dundalk.

“We’ve talked with staff about the possibility of moving to Dundalk,” he said.  “For some of them it’s not an issue, but some others who do quite specialised roles are already traveling from Lisburn and Belfast, so it’s something we are still weighing up.

“At the moment, export businesses like mine are only able to plan ahead on a three to six-month basis, and that’s no way to run any business.  At least in the Republic there’s a state of play and things will stay the same,” he added.

Exports account for around half of the company’s sales, with just 4% of orders made in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.  The majority are shipped to the USA, while the firm also has a wide customer base in Germany, Italy and Spain.

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