Ireland is viewed as a favourable investment location by the vast majority of global big data firms, according to a new report by law firm William Fry.

The research found that 61% of leading companies around the world plan to increase their big data investments substantially over the next 18 months and 96% see Ireland as a favourable location.

The study also states 86% of global corporates believe data-driven investment in Ireland is possible or likely in the next year.

The report, which analyses the key factors driving big data strategies, is based on a survey of 200 C-suite executives in leading companies around the world.

Other findings suggest nearly three quarters of non-technology companies are making extensive use of data, while 82% rate Ireland’s data-related regulatory climate as ‘good to excellent’.

According to the research, Ireland ranks second for EU data driven investment – behind the UK and in front of Germany.

When choosing a location, the survey found that two of the top five issues for international entities were legal framework (including data related laws) and data-related conditions and regulations.

Partner and Head of William Fry’s Technology Department David Cullen says the study results show “there is a real opportunity for Ireland to exploit big data and position itself as the jurisdiction of choice in Europe”.