PayPal’s Irish unit pays out €60m dividend even as profits decline

Subsidiary recorded pretax profit of 12.6m for 2020, down from €27.4m a year earlier

PayPal’s Irish subsidiary, which employs about 2,600 people, paid a €60 million dividend to its parent last year despite a sharp decline in profits.

The company recorded a pretax profit of €12.6 million for 2020, down from €27.4 million a year earlier. Revenue rose to nearly €222 million last year from €216 million in 2019.

In April, PayPal announced plans to relocate more than 130 roles away from its two sites in Dublin and Dundalk, Co Louth, to other countries. The company said at the time it remained "completely committed" to its operations in the Republic.

Founded in 1998, PayPal allows individuals and businesses to send and receive payments online. EBay spun off PayPal in 2015, having acquired the company in a $1.2 billion (€1 billion) deal in October 2002.

European centre

PayPal’s European operations centre opened in Dublin in 2003. In 2009, the company invested €15 million in the establishment of a European centre of excellence in Dublin and three years later it announced the first 1,000 jobs at its operations centre in Dundalk.

The company employed 2,611 people at the end of 2020, up from 2,437 in 2019. More than 1,500 employees work in customer support, with close to a thousand more in administration-related roles.

Staff costs at the Irish subsidiary rose to €159 million last year, compared with €136.6 million in the previous year.

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor

Charlie Taylor is a former Irish Times business journalist