Retail at a glance

Retail is Ireland's largest industry and largest private sector employer, with a presence in every city, town and village - right across the country.
  • The Irish retail sector employs almost 275,000 people... that's the same as the total number of those employed in IT, agriculture, forestry, fishing and the financial and insurance sectors combined.
  • There are 42,000 retail and wholesale businesses operating in Ireland.
  • 83% of retail businesses in Ireland are Irish-owned and Irish-operated.
  • 75% of Irish retail businesses are family-owned enterprises.
  • Data from 2012 indicates that the combined Irish retail and wholesale sector generated €5.7 billion in taxes for the exchequer - €4 billion in VAT and €1.7 billion in PAYE.
  • In 2012, the combined Irish retail and wholesale sector paid out some €8.3 billion in wages.
  • The Irish retail industry is the biggest consumer of Irish food and drink products, purchasing over €5 billion worth of goods annually.