Payments company Square launches Irish services
Move is first time firm has unveiled full stack of integrated business tools in a new market
Square has an e-money licence from the Central Bank of Ireland, which allows it operate elsewhere in Europe. Photograph: iStock
Payments and hardware solution provider Square has launched its services to businesses in Ireland, following a trial of the offering earlier in the year.
The company, which is led by Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey, enables its customers to set up online shops, take card payments in person, access earnings faster and manage inventory.
The Irish launch marks the first time Square has launched with a full stack of integrated business tools in a new market.
“This is the largest launch we’ve ever done,” said Alyssa Henry, executive vice-president with Square. “In all our prior launches it has been a much smaller subset of the products that we’re offering here. Ultimately what we think differentiates Square and what is really compelling for sellers is the fact that we have the full range of tools for online, in-person and streamlining operations that work seamlessly together.”
Square’s services are used by millions of businesses around the world, but this launch marks the first time they are widely available to Irish merchants. The company’s European headquarters are located in Dublin, with the company operating quietly here since 2016.
Although Ireland is not traditionally considered a large market, Ms Henry said the nature of businesses here and the number of small businesses made it a very large potential market, and one that has been underserved in the past.
“Independent businesses are the backbone of Ireland’s economy, and deserve the same tools and resources as big enterprises,” said Jason Lalor, executive director for Square Europe. “Irish businesses can trust Square to be a fair, transparent and innovative partner they can rely on to help them run their business in times of uncertainty, and beyond.”
The company began its early-access programme in April. “We’ve been using Square’s suite of products across channels for two of our locations and are now looking to roll this out for all 10 of our businesses in Ireland,” said Brian Nolan from Gerard’s Deli & Mingles Ice Cream, one of the early-access users. “Having a point-of-sale system with integrated payments and omnichannel solutions has revolutionised the way we’re able to run our multi-location business, making it an easy and seamless process.”
The move was welcomed by Minister for Business, Employment and Retail Damien English.
“I know that a long-term goal for many in retail prior to the pandemic was to scale up online offerings to complement their physical stores,” said the Minister. “ This goal has been accelerated due to the pandemic and many have now adopted new digital transformative models to ensure the strong relationships they have built with their customers can continue into the future.
“I want to see the retail sector develop and become one of our most innovative and resilient sectors in Ireland. It is the largest private sector employer in the country, and supports jobs in every city, town and village.”
Square launched in 2009 in the US. Although the company is already active in Canada, Japan and Australia, and launched its services in the UK in 2017, it had yet to make an attempt on the wider European market. It now has an e-money licence from the Central Bank of Ireland, which allows it operate elsewhere in Europe.
Long-term, the company expects half its business will be outside the US.