Cartoon Saloon tie-up to create 140 new jobs in Kilkenny

Animation company behind ‘Secret of Kells’ joins Canadian firm to develop new projects

Approximately 200 jobs are to be created by two companies in Kilkenny and Waterford.

Kilkenny-based animation company Cartoon Saloon has announced a strategic tie-up with Canada's Mercury Filmworks.

The new venture, to be known as Lighthouse Studios, will create more than 140 jobs in the next three years.

In the coming weeks, the partnership plans to announce development and production projects, as well as a hiring initiative encompassing production management, designers, animators, effects artists, compositors and technical directors.


The move is supported by Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation through IDA Ireland.

Strong record


has a strong record in film-making, including animation, and I have no doubt that this partnership between Mercury Filmworks and Cartoon Saloon will go from strength to strength,” Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Mary Mitchell O’Connor said.

Separately, computer solutions firm Red Hat has announced 60 new jobs in Waterford City.

The US company says it is going to invest €12.7 million in a new project that will result in new jobs coming on stream over four years.

Red Hat’s Waterford office was established in 2014 on foot of its acquisition of the cloud-based software company FeedHenry, originally a spin-out from Waterford Institute of Technology.

It currently serves as the company’s global hub for research and development into mobile application development technology. In addition to Waterford, Red Hat has two other offices in Ireland, including Cork and Dublin.

Software Solutions

Headquartered in



North Carolina

, Red Hat is a provider of open source software solutions.

“This is a really positive development for the southeast region,” said John Halligan, Minister of State for Training, Skills and Innovation. “The Government through the action plan for jobs is very focused on ensuring all of Ireland benefit from job creation. This project today shows that we have the capability to attract big IT projects, which will bring well paid jobs to the region.”

Elsewhere, the Centra chain of stores is to expand this year with 20 new shops and 460 jobs being created.

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy is Economics Correspondent of The Irish Times