There was good news on the jobs front this week for Northern Ireland, with the announcement that Fujitsu Services is to create 400 new jobs in Derry and Belfast.
The positions are the result of a planned £18m investment in the region by the company and Invest Northern Ireland. The IT services company is establishing a managed IT services Centre of Excellence at Derry's Timber Quay, which will bring 328 jobs to the region. The new facility will offer managed IT services to Fujitsu's growing European customer base.
The Derry investment has been described as an endorsement of Northern Ireland's office sector and its potential. Meanwhile, a further 74 jobs will be created at Fujitsu's existing facilities in Belfast.
The project is predicted to bring more than £24m into the local economy over the first three years.
The announcement was made by Northern Ireland's Economy Minister Nigel Dodds, who welcomed the new jobs and described them as a "major economic boost to the area".
"Complemented by an expansion at its existing Belfast location, this landmark project, supported by Invest NI, demonstrates the strength and skill of the talent pool across Northern Ireland and reinforces how local skills can be a key factor in securing and retaining high quality international investment," he said.
Fujitsu's chief executive, David Courtley, said it was a significant step for the company and the region. "Derry has an advanced local infrastructure, the availability of an IT focused labour market and a very close proximity to the UK/European marketplace which made it an ideal choice," he said. "The jobs being created at the new Centre of Excellence will encompass a broad spectrum of specialist high-quality IT services roles."
The new jobs will further strengthen Fujitsu Services' presence in Ireland. The company, which is the IT services arm of the Fujitsu Group and has its headquarters in London, has an annual turnover of £2.29bn (€3.33bn). It employs almost 18,000 people in more than 20 countries.
Copyright © 2007, ENN