Do business in Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is part of the UK, home to over 1,100 international companies and an ideal location for your business investment opportunity. With experienced exporters keen to grow and develop new trade partnerships across Europe, your business can discover the benefits of trading and strategically sourcing products to import from Northern Ireland.

  • Talent icon

    A wealth of talent

    Northern Ireland boasts highly skilled, loyal and motivated people who always go the extra mile.

  • Global icon

    Global sourcing

    We have an established track record as a global business partner, exporting to over 100 countries.

  • Business icon

    Business friendly

    We are one of Europe's most business-friendly regions of our size and an ideal place for foreign direct investment.

  • Cost competitive icon

    Cost competitive for FDI

    Our operating costs are, on average, 20-30% lower than the rest of the UK and Europe- an ideal place for foreign direct investment.

Belfast City Centre Image
Derry Peach Bridge Image

Sector Expertise


Area of sector expertise

  • Cyber security
  • AI and data analytics
  • Sports technology
  • Telecom, mobile and data networks
  • IT services
  • GovTech
  • Smart cities
  • Belfast is Europe’s leading FDI destination for new software development.
  • 100+ international technology investors.
  • 70% of our IT & telecoms professionals hold a higher education qualification – the highest in the UK.

Businesses here include:

  • IBM logo
  • Intel Logo
  • SAP logo

What others are saying

“Northern Ireland is fast becoming a global hub for cyber security professionals and we are keen to leverage the expertise which exists here to drive growth across our businesses.”

Yasufumi Hirai
Chief Information Officer & Chief Information Security Officer

Financial services

Area of sector expertise

  • FinTech
  • Asset and wealth management
  • Banking and capital markets
  • Governance, risk and compliance
  • Insurance and assurance
  • Northern Ireland is the world's top region for FS technology inward investment.
  • $500 billion flows through Belfast each day, representing 10% of the global FX market.
  • 40% reduction in typical salary costs compared to London and Dublin (Bond Search & Selection, 2020)

Businesses here include:

  • Fidessa logo
  • Citi
  • PA Consulting logo

What others are saying

“As a result of being here over the last 15 years we have saved the company more than a billion dollars”

Suren Gupta
Executive Vice President
Allstate Technology & Strategic Ventures

Professional and legal services

Area of sector expertise

  • Legal services
  • Accounting
  • Management consultancy
  • Tech for professional services
  • Two of the top 15 law schools in the UK are in Northern Ireland.
  • Belfast has been identified as one of the top 10 global emerging lawtech scenes alongisde London, San Francisco, Singapore & Tel Aviv (Law Society England & Wales, 2019).
  • Operating costs for a legal services centre in Northern Ireland are up to 50% lower than London and 40% lower than New York.

Businesses here include:

  • Allen & Overy logo
  • Citi
  • Herbert Smith Freehills

What others are saying

“Since our original investment, we have been continually impressed with the contribution our Belfast office has made in supporting the delivery of high-quality legal services to Allen & Overy’s international client base.”

Andrew Brammer
IT & Shared Services Director
Allen & Overy

Global business services

Area of sector expertise

  • Customer experience
  • Financial services
  • Technical support
  •  Operating costs are 33% lower than London and 11% lower than Dublin and 51% lower than NYC.
  •  20,000 people employed in 40 shared services, contact or knowledge centres.
  •  Each year we produce 5,000 graduates with degrees in finance, accounting, business, economics, maths, law and computing.

Businesses here include:

  • Capita
  • PwC logo
  • Teleperformance

What others are saying

“The support provided by Invest NI, the quality of people and the cost-competitive business environment makes Northern Ireland a very attractive location for us.”

Philip Cassidy
Senior Vice President
Concentrix Corporation

Food and drink

Area of sector expertise

  • Meat
  • Dairy
  • Drinks
  • Other
  • World leader in traceability and food security. We created APHIS, an electronic cattle tracing database.
  • Food and drink products from Northern Ireland are available in more than 70 countries.
  • Home to Bushmills, the oldest licensed whiskey distillery in the world.


Area of sector expertise

  • Construction contractors
  • Manufactured construction products
  • Construction services
  •  10,000 firms within the sector of which 215 achieved sales in excess of £5M per annum.
  •  Northern Ireland firms have worked on major projects such as:
    •  London 2012
    •  Crossrail
    •  Titanic Signature Project
  • Northern Ireland firms have also worked on:
    •  National schools and hospitals projects
    •  Fit-out on iconic buildings such as 1 Hyde Park
    •  Fit-out on a range of retail projects across Europe

Businesses here include:

  • Graham Construction logo
  • Lagan construction logo
  • Farrans logo

Aerospace and defence

Area of sector expertise

  • Interiors
  • Structures
  • Supply chain
  • 1 in 3 aircraft seats are manufactured in Northern Ireland.
  • Companies are internationally accredited AS9100, ISO9001 and NADCAP.
  • SC21 - NI Aerospace has 5 Gold, 8 Silver and 5 Bronze awards, with more Golds than any other UK region.

Life and health sciences

Area of sector expertise

  • Precision medicine
  • Pharma and biotech
  • Clinical trials
  • Diagnostics
  • Medtech
  • Vibrant cluster of 250+ businesses, international investors and indigenous companies, employing 8,500.  Exporting globally to over 140 countries.
  • Over 17 world-leading research centres with more than 1,000 researchers
  • 10% of the world's cholesterol tests are made in Northern Ireland.

Businesses here include:

  • Almac logo
  • Randox
  • Norbrook logo

What others are saying

“The quality and availability of specialist skills here and the strong links we have forged with Queen’s University were key factors when we chose Northern Ireland. Northern Ireland offers a wealth of talented and knowledgeable people.”

Dr Robert Ladner

Creative technology

Area of sector expertise

  • Animation
  • Gaming
  • EdTech
  • Interactive content
  • Film & TV production
  •  HBO series Game of Thrones was filmed in Northern Ireland.
  •  Belfast's Titanic Studios is one of the largest film and TV production studios in Europe.
  •  Oscar-winning live action short film The Shore was filmed in Northern Ireland.

Businesses here include:

  • Jam logo
  • Dog Ears logo
  • Flickerpix logo

What others are saying

“I can't imagine any other city or any other area where we could have done this show. Anything we throw at Northern Ireland, they deliver. It's really been a wonderful experience. I think that everything this region has to offer has greatly benefited the look and the feel to the show.”

Frank Doelger
Executive Producer
Game of Thrones

Materials handling

Area of sector expertise

  • Mining and construction
  • Recycling
  • Handling equipment and vehicles
  • Agri-machinery
  • Supply chain
  •  40% of the world’s mobile stone crushing and gravel screening equipment is made in Northern Ireland.
  • When you buy from Northern Ireland, you buy 60 years of leading the world in Mobile Bulk Materials Processing equipment.
  • 8,000 people are employed in over 100 companies.

Advanced manufacturing and engineering

Area of sector expertise

  • Aerospace and defence
  • Automotive
  • Construction
  • Materials handling
  • Electronics
  • Green growth and renewable energy
  • Consumer products
  • Products exported to over 100 countries.
  • 44,000 employees in 2,000 companies.
  • Operating costs up to 34% lower than USA, 30% lower than France and 36% lower than Germany.

Businesses here include:

  • SDC Trailers logo
  • Spirit Aerosystems company logo
  • Ulster Carpets Logo

What others are saying

“Over the years, we have received excellent support from Invest NI and we consider them to be an important partner in our ongoing development and growth in Northern Ireland.”

Hiroshi Urakami

Green growth and renewable energy

Area of sector expertise

  • Low carbon energy (including onshore/ offshore wind)
  • Energy efficiency
  • Energy storage and intelligent energy systems
  • Water and waste water
  • Low carbon transport
  • Data centres
  • Waste and resouces
  • The low carbon sector employs more than 12,000 people in over 300 companies.
  • Northern Irish companies have the capability of providing a range of innovative products and services to address the specific needs of the various energy, water and transport supply chains.
  • 15 competence and research centres.

International education

Options for study

  • Queens University
  • Ulster University
  • University-affiliated teacher training colleges
  • English language teaching
  • Boarding schools
  • Vocational education and training
  • Northern Ireland hosts 45,000 students from over 100 countries.
  • Northern Ireland is recognised as having one of the best education systems in Europe. We’re also renowned for our high quality of life, low cost of living, clean environment, lively social scene and the friendliness of our people.
  • Queen’s University is in the top 1% of universities in the world.
  • Ulster University ranks in the Times Higher Education Supplement’s 150 under 50 – a global comparison of young universities.

Universities based here include:

  • Ulster University logo
  • Queen's University Belfast logo

How we can help

Invest Northern Ireland is the region's economic development agency, responsible for promoting trade and investment opportunities. Our services help potential and existing investors flourish and connect trading partners with our suppliers.


  • Tax incentives
  • Employment & Training grants
  • Research & development grants
  • Finance investment & loans
  • Market development assistance
  • Property search, talent sourcing & business development support
  • A dedicated Invest Northern Ireland project team

For trade

  • Connections with our world-class suppliers
  • Trade show & exhibitions
  • "Meet the Buyer" events

Contact Us

You can contact our offices in Europe directly or connect with any member of our team via LinkedIn.

Looking for other Invest NI contacts globally?

Please visit our Locations Directory

Derek Andrews profile picture
Derek Andrews
Head of Territory - Europe
Jennifer Liu
Jennifer Liu
Head of Trade
Charles Goodier
Charles Goodier
Regional Manager Midlands, N. England & Scotland
Jenny Santiago-Young
Jenny Santiago-Young
Regional Director Ireland
Amy Dalton
Amy Dalton
Regional Director Benelux
Emma Naismith
Emma Naismith
Regional Director Spain, Portugal & Italy
Markus Rehkopp
Markus Rehkopp
Senior Trade Advisor Germany
Photo of Michelle Chaarrington
Michelle Charrington
Food & Drink - Head of Business Development GB
Photo of Drew McIvor
Drew McIvor
Food & Drink - Head of Business Development GB
Photo of Jen Guiney
Jen Guiney
Food & Drink - Business Development Executive Ireland
For information on how we use your personal data including your rights, see our privacy notice.