Frank keane MKO PARTNERS
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Frank Keane, partner and head of international business at chartered accountants MKO Partners, spends a lot of his time scouring the US, Asia and Europe for multinational companies considering setting up new operations in Ireland. “I like to travel as it is only when meeting people face to face, in their backyard, that you get to see their story in full colour and you get to learn of opportunities where you can really help them,” he says. MKO Partners makes its money by providing a range of advisory, audit and tax services to clients, which are setting up Irish subsidiaries. By organising seminars and events it also plays a key role in marketing Ireland as a hot location for foreign investment. Keane says Ireland’s extensive network of double taxation agreements with other countries provides it with a unique selling point that will ensure it continues to attract foreign investment. “The amount of trade taking place out of Ireland is incredible. Sentiment towards Ireland in the US has improved dramatically since the economic crisis began. There is a feeling Ireland has taken the pain and is now moving ahead,” says Keane, who recently completed a week-long business trip to the US that took in 25 meetings. To unwind on foreign trips he chooses hotels with good gym facilities and those which are located close to interesting areas for jogging. “On my last trip I went for a great run along the Hudson River in New York,” he says.