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Californian technology firm Dynamic Signal behind 100 jobs for new Belfast centre

Dynamic Signal sets up new development site in Belfast

Ryan McAleer

By Ryan McAleer

A Silicon Valley tech company has announced plans to create 100 jobs in Belfast in a new development centre.

Dynamic Signal, which creates software for large employers to communicate with staff, said the positions will attract an average salary of around £35,000. Its customers include around one-third of companies listed on the Fortune 500, ranging from Telefonica (O2) and Volvo, to BMW and Nestle.

Speaking to Business Telegraph, Dynamic Signal's co-founder Steve Heyman said the talent pool in Northern Ireland had been the prime motivator for selecting Belfast as the location for its first development centre outside the US.

Based in San Bruno, just south of San Francisco, Dynamic Signal currently employs around 300 people.

Mr Heyman, who is the firm's chief operating officer, said most of the jobs, expected to be created in the next three to four years, will focus on software development and customer service.

Economic development agency Invest NI, which has offered the business £650,000 in support, said the 100 roles could eventually be worth £3.4m in wages for the economy.

The company has already recruited seven people for its initial base at River House on Belfast's High Street, but Mr Heyman said Dynamic Signal is actively seeking a new, more permanent, base here.

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He revealed that the tech firm had investigated a number of different cities around the world before coming in contact with Invest NI.

"Belfast will predominately be a development centre for us. The team there will mainly focus on building the product, developing it and making sure we add the functionality that the market wants."

He described the 100 jobs as an "intermediate goal", with aspirations to grow further into the future.

Steve Heyman, Dynamic Signal
Steve Heyman, Dynamic Signal

"The draw for us is the strong local talent. We really like the environment, like the people and I think it's going to work out really well.

"We were able to talk to a number of different companies and hear about their experiences, which were uniformly positive. That certainly makes the decision easier for us."

The chief operating officer said the intense competition for staff and surging costs in Silicon Valley have pushed more tech companies to look elsewhere for talent.

"From our perspective, cost is a consideration. Being able to augment the team with good talent is our primary motivation.

"Beyond cost, the real challenge for Silicon Valley is availability. There are so many companies in the Valley who are all trying to hire, that it is just hard to find people. Trying to open up to new markets with more accessible talent pools is something that is very helpful to us."

Mr Heyman said the ongoing political uncertainty over Brexit had not deterred the company.

"We certainly investigated the potential consequence of Brexit, but the good news for what we're doing is that it doesn't really affect us one way or the other.

"We came to Northern Ireland for the talent, for the people in Belfast and that area."

Belfast Telegraph