PETER Robinson and Martin McGuinness have announced that PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) is creating 807 new jobs.
The global financial and professional services firm is expanding through two projects, representing an investment of over £40 million. A new financial advisory service called My Financepartner will create 303 jobs, while the second project is the establishment of PwC Augment, a 504-strong staff augmentation team.
Announcing the investment the First Minister Peter Robinson said: “Today’s £40million announcement by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) is a tremendous boost to the Northern Ireland economy and is another significant vote of confidence in Northern Ireland’s talent and attractive business environment.
“These new jobs will provide excellent employment and training opportunities for over 800 people in one of the UK’s ‘Big 4’ consulting firms and will introduce new specialist skills into Northern Ireland’s already strong financial services sector.
“The Northern Ireland Executive remains committed to rebuilding and rebalancing our economy and will continue to do everything in our power to meet this key target in the Programme for Government.”
Welcoming the investment, the deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said: “PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) is a significant employer in the north of Ireland and this announcement will deliver annual salaries of over £16million to the local economy.
“303 of the jobs will be aimed at qualified accountants as well as graduates who will be trained to Chartered Accountant Status. The other 504 jobs will be aimed at graduates over the next five years.
“The 807 new jobs not only reflects the continued demand for the services of PricewaterhouseCoopers but also their desire to use our current and future graduates as the foundation for their business activities worldwide.”
Enterprise, Trade and Investment Minister, Arlene Foster said: “These two significant projects could have gone elsewhere but were secured for Northern Ireland by the hard work of Invest NI and because PwC recognises the high calibre of graduates available here. Companies like PwC are key players in driving Northern Ireland’s continued economic growth.”
Invest Northern Ireland has supported the projects and has offered combined assistance of £4,435,080, including training support, which will deliver annual salaries of over £16million to the local economy.
The 303 jobs generated by the My Financepartner project, which involves professional analysis of financial transactions to provide high quality management information, will be aimed at qualified accountants, as well as graduates who will be trained to Chartered Accountant status.
PwC Augment will create a pool of staff who can be seconded into PwC’s global client businesses to deliver specific assignments, ranging from major transformation projects to acquisition and consolidation.
The project will recruit more than 500 graduates over the next five years, with graduates given high-level training across a number of business areas before being placed on client projects. Graduates will earn a competitive reward package including accommodation and subsistence whilst on assignment.
The average salary for the two projects is £21,000.
Paul Terrington, PwC regional chairman in Northern Ireland said: “The My Financepartner business model takes PwC into a new segment of the business advisory market with the potential to be replicated beyond the UK. PwC Augment is a direct response to international client demand for high-level, multi-skilled in-house support.
“Both developments are in line with our strategy of identifying and developing innovative revenue streams to generate growth and have been initiated from within Northern Ireland. They are a testament to the leadership and entrepreneurial endeavour of our local team.”
“Our decision to locate both these projects in Northern Ireland reflects our confidence in the high standard of the local graduate pool. Over the years we’ve benefitted from strong local talent, recruiting both accountancy graduates and graduates from other disciplines.”
Confirming PwC’s commitment to Northern Ireland and the firm’s confidence in the region, Stephanie Hyde PwC head of regions said: “I am delighted to announce this investment in our Belfast operation and believe that it will further strengthen its strategic importance within the global PwC firm.
“Our experience in Northern Ireland, with its exceptional graduate population and great infrastructure, has been remarkable and it was this that helped convince PwC’s Executive Board that Northern Ireland was the right place for further investment.”
PwC in Northern Ireland is one of Northern Ireland’s largest professional advisors, having recently taken staff numbers in the region to over 1,000, an increase of more than 300 over the past two years.
The Northern Ireland PwC region already provides a wide range of professional advisory support to PwC’s global clients through a number of Belfast-based centres of excellence, including technology, research and insight, data analytics, and cyber security.
Around 70% of PwC Northern Ireland revenues currently accrue from assignments delivered in export markets.