Aer Lingus staff reject €300 voucher and 1% pay rise

Seen & Heard: Retail slumps, Chinese expand in Dundalk and Revenue clampdown

Aer Lingus staff have voted down an offer of a €300 voucher and 1 per cent pay increase as they continue their battle to secure a potentially lucrative profit-share agreement, the Sunday Independent reports.

The newspaper said that ground staff, represented by Siptu, have voted by a majority of 92 per cent against the proposal, which was put forward by the Labour Court in January. Cabin crew and pilots, represented by Fórsa, rejected the recommendation by 96 per cent. Workers at the airline, a unit of International Airlines Group (IAG), have been seeking a profit-share scheme since 2017.

Retailers suffers slump in September

The Sunday Independent also reports that retailers suffered their worst month in more than six years in September as uncertainty over Brexit weighed.

Grant Thornton research carried out for lobby group Retail Excellence Group said that while sales were up more than 1 per cent for July and August, they contracted by 3.3 per cent in September. Footwear and menswear were the worst-affected segments.


WuXi doubles down on Dundalk investment

Chinese pharmaceutical group WuXi, which is building a biologics manufacturing factory in Dundalk at a cost of €325 million, is now planning another facility on adjacent land, the Sunday Times reports.

A new company called WuXi Vaccines Ireland lodged plans for a 15,500sq m manufacturing plant, as well as laboratories and administrative buildings and parking for almost 300 cars, last week with planning authorities. The company told residents in Dundalk that it wants to have the site "strategically prepared and ready to accept additional projects".

Panda and Greenstar owner spends €63m on acquisitions

The owners of the Panda and Greenstar waste businesses in the State, Beauparc Utilities, spent €63 million on acquisitions and a further €23 million on investment last year as it continued to grow in Ireland and the UK, according to the Sunday Times.

The newspaper cites information in annual filings filed with the Companies Registration Office in its report, adding that the documents also confirm that US private equity giant Blackstone took a 37 per cent stake in Beauparc in March. Group operating profit rose 15 per cent last year to €23.7 million.

Revenue finds 58,000 black economy workers

The Sunday Business Post reports that a Revenue crackdown has resulted in the discovery of more than 58,000 workers in the State’s black economy, which has brought in about €100 million to the exchequer.

The move – which has included taking tax credits from thousands of married couples who were wrongly making claims on the double – was enabled by a pay-as-you-earn modernisation project which cost €29 million and increased the flow of information through Revenue’s computers.