Ministers welcome delegation from US financial services firm


Kevin Kometer, Senior Managing Director and Jamie Parisi, Chief Financial Officer of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Group (CME Group), a major global financial services provider, who were in Belfast as part of a welcome meeting with the First Minister, Peter Robinson, deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, Enterprise Minister, Arlene Foster and Employment and Learning Minister Stephen Farry. The visit follows the company’s announcement earlier this year of its plans to establish a new Technology and Support Centre in Belfast, creating between 80 to 100 jobs in the initial recruitment phase.

First Minister Rt. Hon. Peter D. Robinson MLA and deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness MP MLA today welcomed senior representatives from CME Group, the world's leading and most diverse derivatives marketplace, to Northern Ireland.

Earlier this year the company confirmed its plans to establish a new technology development and support centre in Belfast, creating between 80 -100 jobs in the next year, with further expansion planned in the future.

CME Group offers the widest range of global benchmark products across all major asset classes based on interest rates, equity indexes, foreign exchange, energy, agriculture commodities, metals, weather and real estate.

Ten jobs are already in place at the Belfast centre which will provide software development to support CME Group’s regional operations.

The investment has been supported by Invest Northern Ireland with further assistance from the Department of Employment and Learning under its Assured Skills Programme.

The First Minister said: “CME Group’s decision to establish its technology and support centre in Belfast is a tremendous vote of confidence for Northern Ireland and testament to the reputation of our workforce among international players.”

The deputy First Minister said: “Last year, the First Minister and I met senior executives of the company to promote the many benefits that we have to offer and we are delighted CME Group chose to locate here, bringing valuable investment and a boost to our skills base.”

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster and Employment and Learning Minister Dr Stephen Farry also met with CME Group’s senior representatives during their visit to Parliament Buildings.

Arlene Foster said: “This is the kind of high quality inward investor that Invest NI seeks to attract to Northern Ireland in order to help develop a knowledge-based economy with long-term sustainability. The financial services sector has huge potential to drive economic growth and Invest NI has worked tirelessly over the last two years to secure the CME Group investment.”

Employment and Learning Minister Dr Stephen Farry said: “I am pleased that my Department, working alongside Invest Northern Ireland, has been able to play a significant part in bringing this project to Northern Ireland. Skills are the cornerstone of economic development and, using Assured Skills funding, we have worked with CME to ensure that their employees will have the training support they need to be productive as quickly as possible.”

Kevin Kometer, Senior Managing Director and Chief Information Officer of CME Group, said: “The availability of talented IT and financial services staff in Northern Ireland and the high quality, yet cost effective, business environment make this region very attractive to us. We’d like to thank the Ministers and Invest NI for their support and guidance during our decision making process.”