The newly appointed Fintech Envoy for Northern Ireland, Andrew Jenkins has made his first official visit to the North West with an engagement at the Londonderry Chamber of Commerce.
Envoy Jenkins who was appointed by the HM Treasury in September, met with President, Brian McGrath and several key Fintech leaders in the North West including Aidan O’Kane Senior Manager in Allstate, Greg McCann Executive Director of FinTrU and Leo Murphy North West Regional College Principal.
Fintech is one of the fastest growing sectors of the UK economy, encompassing innovation in financial services including digital banking, payment technologies and crowdfunding platforms.
Northern Ireland is regarded as a world-renowned driver of the Fintech sector which continues to rapidly develop in the North West. 40,000 people in Northern Ireland are employed across the financial and professional services with 1 in 4 of these employed in technology roles.
Through his role as Fintech Envoy, Andrew Jenkins is responsible for promoting Northern Ireland’s thriving Fintech sector and championing it as a place for firms to continue to develop and grow their businesses. This includes bringing forward an ambitious strategy which aspires to further establish Northern Ireland’s place as a Fintech centre of excellence.
Andrew Jenkins, Fintech Envoy for Northern Ireland commented: “It was great to meet with the Chamber President Brian McGrath who has been a fantastic supporter of the vibrant and growing Fintech community which exists in the North West.”
“It is increasingly important that collaboration takes place across the various stakeholder groups and I am committed to continuing to work with these groups, businesses and individuals in the North West.”
“A diverse pool of talent is essential to advance Fintech investment and growth across Northern Ireland, but we must work hard to develop the skills and talent base to be able to fill future roles and maintain our global reputation as being among the best.”
He added: “One important issue which I will be dealing with in my role as Fintech Envoy is funding and I am committed to helping to signpost those in the North West to the funds and sources of finance which are required to assist businesses in this area to start, grow and develop.”
“The global success of both Allstate and FinTrU, who are key economic drivers in the North West, is testament to the potential which exists for further growth. It is undoubted that together we can build an ecosystem of talent and skills which will allow innovation in the Fintech sector to flourish. I am committed to continuing to engage with those leaders from business, industry and education in the North West, to achieve this potential.”
Brian McGrath, President of the Londonderry Chamber of Commerce commented: “I was thrilled to welcome Andrew Jenkins to the Chamber offices in his first visit as the new Fintech Envoy for Northern Ireland. Several members of the Londonderry Chamber are leading the way in the Fintech space and it is increasingly important to acknowledge the role of the Fintech industry in job creation and economic development here in the city and the region.”
“Northern Ireland has firmly established itself as one of the leading global destinations for Fintech development investment projects and that includes the contribution from the North West. The challenge now is to maintain that global ranking and reputation and we at Chamber will do all we can to support that drive.”
Leo Murphy, Principal of North West Regional College commented: “It is important that recognition is given to the development of Fintech talent and skills and I very much welcome the Fintech Envoy’s ambition to promote and deliver on this key aspect.”
“The North West Regional College is proud of our track record in collaborating with local business to develop and deliver the skills which are required to drive the economy and to create a global impact. The Assured Skills Academy which recently launched for the fifth time, is one example of how the college continues to provide the research and innovation expertise required by employers to drive Fintech forward.”