Matheson: ‘Unrivalled’ opportunities on US West Coast

Mark O'Sullivan
Mark O’Sullivan

Business opportunities on the US West Coast are “unrivalled”, according to Matheson, the first Irish law firm to open an office there.

Mark O’Sullivan, who heads Matheson’s West Coast offices, told The Irish Times that “companies with innovative technologies that will shape the future are popping up every day”.

He added: “Being based in California means I often visit clients at the birthplace of their companies and you get to experience the very distinctive and vibrant energy that created them in the first place.

“You also get to see the innovative and ground-breaking projects they are working on. Many are embarking on a path that will truly disrupt traditional business sectors.”

In a wide-ranging interview with the newspaper, he also spoke about the uncertainty created by Donald Trump’s election as US president.

He said: “The level of uncertainty at the beginning of this year did lead to projects stalling for a period of time but in recent weeks, activity levels have picked up and business life carries on as normal.

“I don’t think the business environment has changed noticeably since the election, however it is still early in president Trump’s regime and he hasn’t yet accomplished most of the legislative changes proposed in his election manifesto.”

On Matheson’s role in the US, Mr O’Sullivan said: “We were the first Irish law firm to open an office here and my main remit is to provide support on Irish legal and tax matters for our West Coast-based clients.

“The conversation about setting up an Irish operation usually starts here and I also spend a lot of time promoting Ireland as a business destination and building relationships.

“The West Coast and Silicon Valley have been an important part of our firm’s international growth strategy since the late 90s. I now spend two to three days a week in San Francisco and while the distance between our two offices is relatively close (40 miles), in many ways they are two separate markets.”

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