TV channel for Irish diaspora says it will create 150 jobs

London-based businessman John Griffin backs €15m Irish TV

A new

television channel backed by London-based Irish businessman John Griffin, says it will create 150 new jobs when it launches next month.

Irish TV is planning to launch a round-the-clock service aimed at the country's diaspora in North America, Europe and Britain that will be launched on May 1st on Freesat, Sky and the US Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).

The company said yesterday that its launch would create 150 jobs, with 34 staff initially based in its headquarters in Westport, Co Mayo, five in a second office in Donaghmore, Co Tyrone, and three in each of the 32 counties.


Along with this, it will have 10 people spread across three British offices in Manchester, Liverpool and London and five in a base in Cleveland, Ohio in the northeastern US.

Irish TV's biggest shareholder is Mr Griffin, who last year sold his London-based Addison Lee minicab company for €360 million. He is from Mayo but moved with his family to London when he was young.

The company has not revealed how much its backers are investing, but bills itself as “a €15 million project”.

Journalist Pierce O'Reilly who previously worked for the Irish Echo in the US, and businesswoman Mairéad Ní Mhaoilchiaráin both also from Mayo, founded Irish TV.

Mr O’Reilly said securing deals with Sky in Europe and Britain and PBS in the US would give the channel the potential to capture a large number of the Irish diaspora.

Commercial offering
"This will also create a positive commercial offering for advertisers, both at home and abroad," he added.

The station will offer 50 home-produced programmes a week and broadcast six hours of original programming nightly from 6pm to 12am.

Each of the 32 counties will feature in their own half-hour programme broadcast on the channel each week.

It will also produce and broadcast local news, children’s TV, and programmes on culture, agriculture and entertainment. Country singer Lisa McHugh will present its prime-time Saturday night show.

Irish TV will also broadcast specific RTÉ digital content, focused mainly on news and politics, to an international audience, and plans to offer an online service on

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O'Halloran

Barry O’Halloran covers energy, construction, insolvency, and gaming and betting, among other areas