A total of 31 new jobs are to be created in Belfast by UK and US-based financial technology firm Options in an investment worth almost £3 million.
The London and New York-based company provides cloud-based IT infrastructure products to the global financial services industry.
It currently employs 100 people and is poised for considerable growth with 12 of the 31 jobs to be created in Belfast already in place.
Backed with almost £250,000 of support from Invest NI, the project involves Danny Moore, a leading figure in financial software who is chief operating officer with Options.
Welcoming the announcement, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said the company’s rationale for selecting Northern Ireland included the availability of skilled support engineers, the high-speed telecommunications links between Northern Ireland, North America and Europe, and the support offered by Invest NI.
“Options was also influenced by the positive experience of other financial IT companies here, such as Citi and CME, and by the strong links between industry and our university research groups in Belfast and Londonderry,” she added.
Barry McBride, Invest NI’s executive director of international business, made the jobs announcement yesterday during a visit to the company’s new premises on Botanic Avenue.
“Options is the latest globally trading company to choose Northern Ireland as an investment location. Its investment will generate around £1.1 million annually in salaries and wages.
“This news follows recent significant investment announcements by Concentrix and EY and further demonstrates this region’s ability to attract high quality, knowledge-based businesses.”
Options’ global customers include leading hedge funds, exchanges and global investment banks. It has offices in central London, New York, Chicago, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Mr Moore, who is also a partner in the venture capital firm Lough Shore Investments, is the former COO of NYSE Technologies.
Prior to that, he was CEO of Belfast-based trading technology firm Wombat Financial Software, acquired by NYSE in March 2008.
“The burgeoning financial technology sector here, coupled with a dynamic, motivated and highly-educated workforce, makes Belfast a perfect fit for Options,” he said.
“The breadth of local talent, both technical and non-technical, is the reason we brought Wombat to Belfast, and later NYSE, and I’ve no doubt that it was this talent that helped propel Wombat to its ultimate success.
“Similarly, I fully expect Belfast to be an integral part of Options’ future growth.
“I would like to thank Barry, Enterprise Minster Arlene Foster and Invest NI for their confidence and commitment. This last decade has seen Belfast, and Northern Ireland, become a significant player in the global financial services sector and it certainly would not have been possible without their continued support.”