Almost 100,000 women are now directors of Irish companies, an increase of 20% since the start of the recession.

The findings are part of the latest research carried out by business and credit risk analyst Vision-net.

The figures, released on International Women's Day, show that the number of women directors in Irish companies is 99,915, compared to 84,370 five years ago and 43,282 a decade ago.

The number of Irish company directors is 317,308 and, of these, three out of 10 are women.

Almost two-thirds of women directors are in their 40s, 23% are in their 50s and just 4% are in their 20s.