Translation and interpretation firm founded by migrant who arrived in Ireland in 2003 has expanded well beyond expectations

June 3, 2015 Comments off

by The Irish Times, 3rd June 2015

Translit has come a long way in a short time. Alex Chernenko established the Limerick-based company, which also has offices in Cork city, as a one-man operation in 2009.

Since then, it has expanded well beyond what he originally envisaged and Alex is now looking to franchise his business model to grow the company further.

A recent finalist in the Best Emerging/Start-up Business category at the Limerick Chamber Regional Business Awards, Translit provides certified translation and interpretation services. The company has a database of more than 500 translators and interpreters covering more than 70 languages.

More recently, it has moved into a number of related work areas such as localisation and even further afield into facilitating company formations, and providing business consultancy services and tax advice.

Alex, who is proficient in English, Ukrainian, Russian and Romanian, moved to Ireland from the Ukraine in 2003. After getting a degree in computer engineering from the University of Limerick, he began to freelance as a translator while also working in IT. Read more…

IRBA Newsletter

May 24, 2015 Comments off

Dear IRBA Friends,

The IRBA Newsletter Q1 2015 is now available via the link below:

Kind regards,

The IRBA Team.



IRBA Notice: Russian Students – Spring School in Dublin Institute of Technology – 18th to 28th March 2015

March 6, 2015 Comments off

Dear IRBA Friends,

Dublin Institute of Technology, College of Business, is hosting  the ‘Spring School’ of students from St Petersburg  State University of Economics and Finance (Finec) form 18th to 28th March 2015.

Dr. Constantin Gurdgiev and Dr. Jim Hanly will address the students at an informal event   on Tuesday 24th March in Dublin Institute of Technology. It will give the students an opportunity to gain insight into Irish – Russian economic and business issues.

Date: Tuesday 24th March 2015
Venue: Room 5050 of Dublin Institute od Technology, Augnier Street, Dublin 2
Time: 2pm – 3.30pm

The event is part of a longer visit of some fourteen students from St. Petersburg. “Finec” is a major provider of undergraduate and postgraduate education to some 13,000 students in a wide range of disciplines. Read more…

**Event Postponed Announcement** Annual IRBA Business Seminar a part of Festival of Russian Culture – Thursday, 19th February 2015

February 17, 2015 Comments off

Dear IRBA Friends,

We regret to announce that the IRBA Business Seminar as part of the Festival of Russian Culture 2015, scheduled for Thursday,19th February 2015 at O’Callaghan Alexander Hotel, Dublin 2 has been postponed for reasons beyond our control.

The event will be rescheduled as soon as possible.

For any queries, please do no hesitate to contact us at

Kind regards,

The IRBA Team


IRBA Business Breakfast Seminar Invitation

February 11, 2015 Comments off

Dear IRBA Friends,
The Ireland Russia Business Association is delighted to announce its next event, a Business Breakfast Seminar as part of the Festival of Russian Culture taking place on Thursday, 19th February 2015.

Date: Thursday, 19th February
Venue: O’Callaghan Alexander Hotel, Dublin 2
Time: 8.00am – Registration opening at 7.30am
Running order:

– 7.30: Registration Opens
– 8.00: Breakfast Served
– 8.30: MC Peter Finnegan, Dublin City Council
– 8.40: Speaker: Vera Smyth, The Festival of Russian Culture
– 8.45: Speaker: Councillor Ciarán O’Moore
– 8.55: Speaker: Russian Ambassador, H.E Maxim Peshkov
– 9.00: Speaker: Enterprise Ireland representative
– 9.10: Speaker: Industry speaker – Gareth Delaney, Orix Aviation and Alan Phelan, Lufthansa Technik AG.*
– 9.20: Q&A: Dr Constantin Gurdgiev, Economist & Lecturer
– 9.30: Wrap-up & Networking
– 10.00: Close

* Gareth  Delaney, Orix Aviation will provide an insight into aircraft leasing in Russia and Alan Phelan will comment from an aircraft maintenance perspective and give an overview on lessons learnt in the past 10 years doing business in Russia.

Tickets: €30
RSVPs: Numbers strictly limited. Payment required in advance. To register and secure your booking please email Deadline COB on Tuesday, 17th February 2015. For payment details click here.

This event is opened to all and email recipients are invited to circulate the invite to interested colleagues, friends and contacts.

Kind regards,
The IRBA Team

Festival of Russian Culture 2015, 14th – 22nd of February, Programme of events

February 8, 2015 Comments off

by Vera Smyth, Chair of the Festival of Russian Culture

The Ireland Russia Business Association is pleased to announce the programme of the Festival of Russian Culture 2015.

  • 13-15 Feb: “The Tale of Tsar Saltan” by Moscow Puppet Theatre (performed in Russian)в-ирландии/сказка-о-царе-салтане-в-ирландии/, Russian Schools and Clubs
  • 14 Feb, 13.30-14.30: Official Opening and concert of Russian classical music “Titans of St. Petersburg” with Deirdre and Fionnuala Moynihan, Hugh Lane Gallery
  • 15 Feb, 12.00-13.00: Lecture on Russian Art, Hugh Lane Gallery
  • 16 Feb, 11.00-12.00: Russia: flicking through the history book with Vera Smyth, Ballyfermot Library
  • 16 Feb, 18.30-19.30: Talk on Maxim Gorky with Svetlana Maximova, Rathmines Library
  • 17 Feb, 10.00-12.30: Talk on Russian Studies and Quiz for Transition Year students “How well do you know Russia” by TCD students, Ilac Library
  • 17 Feb, 20.00: Great Symphonies Close Up, Sergey Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 1, National Concert Hall, tickets at
  • 18 Feb, 13.00-14.00: Workshop on 175th anniversary of Tchaikovsky, Ilac Library
  • 18 Feb, 13.00-14.00: Lecture “Art in Transition: Painting in Early 20th Century Russia” with Wanda Smolin, National Gallery of Ireland
  • 18 Feb, All day: Open Day at Department of Russian and Slavonic Studies, TCD, Trinity College
  • 18 Feb, 16.30-18.00: Free Russian-speaking tour of Trinity College, Room 5051, Arts Building, TCD
  • 18 Feb, 19.00-21.00: Gala concert, Atrium, Trinity College
  • 19 Feb, 08.00-09.30: Business breakfast with Ireland Russia Business Association, IRBA
  • 19 Feb, 20.00: Ray Chen plays Russian composers, National Concert Hall, tickets at
  • 20 Feb, 19.00-20.00: Russian poetry talk and readings, Venue to be confirmed
  • 21 Feb, 13.30-14.30: Concert of Russian classical music with Owen Lorigan, Helene Hutchinson, David Scott, Eoin Hynes and Siobhan Kilkelly, Hugh Lane Gallery
  • 21 Feb, 15.00-16.00: Life and works of Alexander Pushkin with Svetlana Maximova, Pearse Street Library
  • 21 Feb, 15.30-16.45: Russian/English Conversation Exchange, Ilac Centre Library
  • 22 Feb, 12.00-17.0: Family Day with entertainment for children and families, Red Cow Moran Hotel
  • 22 Feb, 12.00-13.00: Film on Russian Art, Hugh Lane Gallery

Festival of Russian Culture 2015, Dublin

January 26, 2015 Comments off

by Vera Smyth, Chair of the Festival of Russian Culture

Festival of Russian Culture will celebrate its 6th year and will be held from Saturday the 14th till Sunday the 22nd of February.

The Festival has been a great success, notably the extensive range of cultural and entertainment activities attracting significant interest from both Irish and Russian communities. The festival has huge success generating a substantial amount of national and local press and radio coverage. Last year it was featured on the RTE Nationwide.

The aim of the festival is to promote Russian culture and to provide an opportunity for people of Dublin and visitors to get a taste of Russian art and music, traditions and cuisine.

The week-long festival is made up of multiple free events and is designed to appeal to people of all ages, and to increase knowledge of Russian culture within Ireland. The festival guarantees a high degree of exposure for companies looking to make direct contact with desirable target audiences.  Read more…


December 8, 2014 Comments off

by Gerard MacCarthy, director, Enterprise Ireland Russia/CIS and head of the commercial department at the Embassy of Ireland

“Ireland – #1 Best Countries for Business “
Forbes 2014

As part of the intergovernmental Ireland-Russia Joint Economic Commission, on November 24 2014 the first ever multi-agency Team Ireland Showcase was held in Moscow at the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s headquarters, a stone’s throw away from the Kremlin.

The showcase highlighted Ireland as an investment and joint-project destination, allowing Russian investment, VC, and R&D partners to explore the potential for establishing joint intellectual property or production bases using Ireland’s long experience in the commercialisation of innovative and high-tech projects.

Speakers at the event included: Ambassador Eoin O’Leary; Georgi Petrov, Vice-President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Dmitry Sazhin, Head of the Europe and American Department of the Ministry of Economic Development; Professor Shamil Gantsev, Member of the Federation Council; and Shane Nolan, Head of Growth Markets Division, Industrial Development Authority of Ireland (IDA); Dr. Darrin Morrissey, Director of Programs, Science Foundation Ireland; Peter Lennox, International Entrepreneur Programme Senior Development Advisor, Enterprise Ireland; Pat Flynn, Flynn O’Driscoll Lawyers, Member of the Board of Directors, Enterprise Ireland; Brien Henderson, Head of the Visa Department, the Embassy of Ireland, Moscow; and Dmitry Simonenko, a Russian serial entrepreneur who has two businesses in Ireland. The event was introduced by Gerard MacCarthy, Director of Enterprise Ireland’s Russia and CIS office. Read more…

Is the ruble a basket case or oversold?

December 3, 2014 Comments off

by Chris Weafer, Macro-Advisory Ltd

At mid-session on the first trading day of December, the ruble had declined by 60% against the US dollar since the start of the year (over 70% since the start of 2013), and was down 45% against the euro (55% since January 2013). The obvious questions are: why has the ruble fallen so quickly and by so much? Does this collapse jeopardize Russia’s financial stability and raise the risk of a default? And, how much further can the ruble fall or is this another of those attractive buying opportunities that seem to be available in Russia every seven years?

Is the fall justified?

By most standard measures the ruble’s collapse has been extraordinary. That scale of decline is usually associated with an economy with huge debt obligations, a non-fundable budget and a current account deficit. Russia ticks none of those boxes. Total foreign sovereign debt is only at 3% of GDP, and total private sector foreign debt is at 33% of GDP and falling as a result of the fact that Russian companies are not able to refinance maturing debt on foreign markets. Despite spending approximately $70 bln in a futile defence of the ruble this year, the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) still has $420 bln in foreign exchange reserves, a total which includes $180 bln split between two readily available sovereign wealth funds. At the end of the third quarter the trade surplus was over $150 bln, up over 10% from the previous year, the current account surplus was just short of $60 bln, i.e. double that of 2013, and the federal budget surplus was equal to 2.1% of GDP. Read more…

Opportunities remain in Russia for Irish companies despite €100m hit to food exports

October 8, 2014 Comments off

Opportunities remain in Russia for Irish companies despite €100m hit to food exports

Irish food companies have been hit hard by Russian sanctions against Europe, but also by the pork ban introduced at the start of this year, costing Ireland in total an estimated €100m in food related exports in 2014.

This was one of the messages to come out of a business breakfast briefing held by the Ireland Russia Business Association (IRBA) recently.

Speakers included Gerard MacCarthy, director, Enterprise Ireland Russia/CIS and head of the commercial department at the Embassy of Ireland in Moscow and IRBA chair Dr Constantin Gurdgiev.

“From a trade point of view, the rouble euro-exchange rate, the so-called ‘Presidential Ban’ targeted at the food sector as a response to EU sanctions against Russia, and a volatile and unpredictable political and legislative environment are key current risk factors in dealing with the Russian market,” said MacCarthy.

However, the seminar heard opportunities still remain, particularly in genetics, ingredients, and food technology/agricultural consultancy, and it is hoped that the current ban will be lifted in the short term.

Despite a volatile and unpredictable multilateral political landscape in the Russia/CIS region, Irish non-food companies have shown agility and resilience in engaging with what is the third biggest non-EU exports market for Irish companies after the US and China.

Irish exports to Russia amount to around €635m a year. The latest available figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show an increase of 28pc from January to July in comparison with the same period in 2013, with July alone showing a 121pc increase.

The growth has been consistent over time. Enterprise Ireland client exports to Russia – which account for over 45pc of the CSO figures – have increased 87pc between 2008 and 2013.

“The opportunity space for Irish exporters in Russia remains wide open in areas not impacted by sanctions. And new opportunities should open up in areas relating to agricultural production, food processing, storage and transportation,” said Gurdgiev.

“In addition, there is renewed scope for investment in Russia in the above areas and in areas relating to technological innovation and modernisation in a wide range of sectors.”

“While over the next one to two years we can expect more uncertainty and risks to materialise, including the risk of significant further devaluation of the rouble. Taking a longer term horizon of five to 10 years, these factors are likely to be replaced by more positive growth momentum and improved returns on foreign investment.”

The IRBA started in 2010 as a subsidiary of the Irish Exporters Association.