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Limerick 2020 Making the Mid West a finance hub

On 5 May 2017, FSI hosted the first in a series of regional conferences in Limerick for local business leaders exploring how the Mid-West can become a finance hub. Marc Coleman, Director of FSI felt that while the impact of Brexit on financial services employment in Ireland is still evolving and nothing is certain, it is vital that the regions of Ireland get their fair share of any jobs growth. This is very much in keeping with the objectives of the Government’s strategy for International Financial Services - IFS2020 and the Government National Planning Framework.

In 2016, over 1,900 jobs were created in the Mid-West with over 2,000 people working in financial services according to Niall O’Callaghan, Business & Relationship Manager, Mid-West Region, IDA Ireland

If these numbers are to grow Dr. Ed Walsh, founding President of the University of Limerick and now of Oakhampton Consultants believes that “enabling large regional cities like Limerick Cork and Galway - and satellite towns - to plan a collaboration of the necessary scale and sophistication to create an alternative to Dublin is critical. Regions should take the initiative in planning a corridor of ‘e-towns’ and ‘creative cities’ whose living and working conditions can be as attractive to potential investors and start ups as Dublin is and, where clusters of activity can also revitalise rural towns and villages”.

Fergal O’Brien, Director of Policy and Public Affairs, Ibec indicated that the availability of talent determines the location of international activities.

This vision for growth and investment was further confirmed by Denis McCarthy, CEO – FEXCO who noted that from humble beginnings in the 1980s in Kilorgan, Co. Kerry they now employ more people than the town’s population. Clive Bellows, Head of Global Fund Service EMEA and Head of Northern Trust, Ireland who employ over 800 people in Limerick who posed the question when looking to expand your organisation, “don’t ask ‘why’ but rather ‘why not’? With the right vision, any thing is possible.

(Lto R) Marc Coleman - FSI and Dr. Ed Walsh - Oakhampton Consultants

(L to R) Fergal O'Brien - Ibec and Denis McCarthy - FEXCO

(L to R) Clive Bellows - Northern Trust, Dr. Ed Walsh - Oakhampton Consultant, Catherine Duffy - Northern Trust and Fergal O'Brien - Ibec

(L to R) Niall O'Callaghan - IDA, Clive Bellows and Catherine Duffy - Northern Trust and Fergal O'Brien - Ibec

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