Texas software firm expects to hit 100 staff in Belfast this year

Bazaarvoice Belfast site lead Seamus Cushley and chief executive Keith Nealon at the company’s offices in the city centre

A US tech firm that set up its European base in Belfast three years ago has said it expects to have 100 staff by the end of 2020.

Texas-based Bazaarvoice originally announced its move to the city in June 2017 with an Invest NI-backed pledge to create 168 jobs within three years.

Two-and-a-half years on, the company, which specialises in ratings and reviews software, has a team of 58 in Belfast.

Bazaarvoice has said it hopes to add at least 50 more people within the next nine months.

The US firm moved into new offices on Castle Street in Belfast city centre at the end of last year.

It said the new roles will be in in software engineering, R&D, design, user experience and business development.

The company's recently appointed new chief executive Keith Nelson made the commitment during his first visit to the Belfast office this week.

The Austin-based Dublin native, revealed that Bazaarvoice originally planned to locate a client services and support centre in Belfast. But he said the company had instead opted to establish its first international R&D lab.

“New product innovations and acquisitions focused on driving measurable results for our customers have extended our leadership position and set us up for the next chapter in our company story,” he said.

“I am excited to lead the business into its next phase and excited that Belfast will play a crucial role in the company's global operations as we grow.

“Bazaarvoice pioneered the category of authentic reviews and user-generated content, serving as a trusted partner to leading brands. At a time when consumers increasingly insist on trustworthy user-generated content to make purchase decisions and brands and retailers seek to innovate to drive revenue growth, Bazaarvoice is poised to deliver increased value to all of them.”

Seamus Cushley, who has been appointed as VP of research and development and site lead, said 2020 will be a big year for the company and Belfast will play a key role as it expands into Europe.

“The team in Belfast is creating business critical software that directly impacts how some of the world's best brands run their businesses and interact with their customers. There are not many companies here with true potential to scale which also offer their teams the opportunity to deliver products that are used by millions of people every day” he said.

“By the end of this year Belfast will represent around 10 per cent of Bazaarvoice's workforce and will have an increasingly important role in the company's global R&D function, which is helping drive growth into new markets. We are keen to recruit smart, curious, enthusiastic people from diverse backgrounds to join the team at this exciting point in our evolution.”

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