London fintech firm to create 232 jobs in new Belfast base

The Bank of London's founder Anthony Watson described Belfast as 'the UK’s gateway city to the EU'.

A LONDON-based fintech company has announced a multi-million-pound investment in Northern Ireland with plans to create up to 232 jobs.

The Bank of London, which has described Belfast as ‘the UK’s gateway city to the EU’, has already recruited 34 people for its new centre of excellence in the city.

Launched in November 2021 as only the sixth principal clearing bank of the UK, the company has emerged as a disruptor in the City of London.

Clearing is the process of settling transactions between banks.

With a valuation of $1.1 billion, the company has already attained ‘unicorn’ status.

It also has a base in New York.

The Bank of London is currently advertising for 54 vacancies in Belfast, with plans to expand its Northern Ireland workforce to 232 by 2026.

It expects the new jobs will eventually be worth around £20m a year in annual salaries.

The company is understood to have initially taken up flexible office space in Belfast’s Arthur Street, with plans to expand into its own premises.

The company’s founder is Anthony Watson, a former chief information officer at both Nike and Barclays.

Citing Belfast’s talent pool, proximity to academic institutions and its growing tech sector, he also said the city is strategically placed to access the European Union.

“To build the future of finance, we need to be where the future is. Belfast is now the UK’s gateway city to the European Union, and this coupled with Belfast’s exceptional fintech talent across multiple disciplines, makes it the logical choice for The Bank of London’s centre of excellence to power our UK expansion.”

The company has recruited former Northern Ireland Secretary Peter Mandelson to its board.

The labour peer, who also served as the European Commissioner for Trade for four years, is now deputy group chair and senior independent non-executive director of The Bank of London.

“During my time as Her Majesty’s Secretary of State of Northern Ireland I got to work with people from all faiths and backgrounds,” he said.

“The people of Northern Ireland left an indelible impression on me, and I’m delighted that our firm has selected Belfast for its centre of excellence."

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