Belfast Telegraph

Belfast man to head up US body to drive investment

By Margaret Canning

A KPMG boss who grew up in a family of nine in west Belfast is to help drive US investment into Northern Ireland.

Shaun Kelly, the New York-based chief operating officer of KPMG, has been appointed to a new coast-to-coast council announced by the First and Deputy First Ministers during their US visit this week.

Mr Kelly, who last year received an honorary doctorate from Queen's, will represent the US east coast on the council.

First Minister Arlene Foster said the body would help the Executive accelerate investment opportunities from the US.

"It will also use its networks and connections to reach potential new investors," she added.

UCD graduate Mr Kelly formerly worked in corporate recovery in Northern Ireland, and in interviews he has recalled that he acted as receiver to the Europa Hotel over a period in which it was bombed twice.

John Hartnett, chief executive of investment firm SVG Partners and head of the Irish Technology Leadership Group, will chair the council on the west coast.

Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness said Mr Hartnett was "very well-known in the technology sector in the US and Ireland" and that the US was already our biggest investor, he said. "With the support of the advisory council and the continued work by Invest NI we hope to continue this trend and secure even more investment," he added.

Mr Hartnett is a graduate of the University of Limerick. He served on Hillary Clinton's Northern Ireland Committee during her tenure as US Secretary of State. He is also chairman of Belfast-based medical devices company SiSaf Ltd.

The council will have up to six members in the east and west and is to be up and running by the summer.

Belfast Telegraph