Six tech companies from Northern Ireland are eyeing partnership opportunities in Atlanta during a trade mission March 27-29.
The delegation led by the Invest Northern Ireland agency is part of a two-city visit to North America; the group heads to Toronto after the three-day stop in the Georgia capital.
Northern Ireland, located in the northeast of the island of Ireland but governed as a part of the United Kingdom, is bringing companies that showcase the depth and breadth of its tech sector and how its strengths complement some of Atlanta’s.
Already, Atlanta has caught the eye of a few firms like Belfast-based Kainos, which in December 2020 announced that it would put an office employing 137 people in Buckhead.
A few months before, Atlanta’s Riskonnect had already shown that the relationship goes both ways: The software provider with a focus on fintech in March 2020 said it would hire 100 in Belfast after expanding into the U.K. through an acquisition. The company qualified for about $500,000 Northern Ireland in incentives related to its plans to staff up.
Larger Georgia firms like fintech giant Global Payments in Atlanta and supplemental insurer Aflac Inc., based in Columbus, have for many years run significant operations out of Belfast, a hub for cybersecurity, biotech, tourism, advanced manufacturing and more.
Invest Northern Ireland is hoping to build on such collaborations as it brings software innovators in consulting, e-commerce optimization through AI, branding and regulatory and risk compliance management. The list of participants includes:
Click here for a landing page including summaries about all the participating companies, links to their websites and social media pages and videos offering more background on their leadership and stories.
Andrea Haughian, executive vice president and head of the Americas for Invest Northern Ireland, is scheduled to make the trip to Atlanta.
Good to know: While few delegations have crossed the Atlantic in the past few years, Georgia and Northern Ireland were regularly connected via consistent trade missions for many years, starting in the 1990s when the region put a business development office in Atlanta that was later shuttered. In 2007, then-Gov. Sonny Perdue visited both Belfast and Dublin on a mission to Ireland, just after local government was re-established in Northern Ireland. Global Atlanta covered that visit and also sent a reporter to Northern Ireland in 2008.
This year (2023) is significant for both jurisdictions as April 10 marks the 25th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement, the peace deal that ended the Troubles, a period of sectarian strife along the border that killed about 3,500 people over nearly four decades.
View more Global Atlanta stories on Northern Ireland from our archive