A Cork financial tech firm has said it is aiming to achieve “unicorn” status in the coming years as it announces a major expansion of its operations.
Global Shares announced on Thursday that it plans to hire 150 new staff immediately, adding hundreds more in the coming years.
In the financial sector, a unicorn is a privately held startup company that is valued at more than $1 billion.
Founded in 2005 as a service only company, Global Shares entered a gap in the market providing software to help companies manage their equity. Its clients include Italian insurance firm Generali, Krispy Kreme, Cargill and Fujitsu.
An employee-owned firm, it is now seeking to increase its headcount from 370 to 1,000 by 2024.
Speaking on the announcement, chief executive Tim Houstoun, said: “I love that we are writing software in Clonakilty that transforms people’s lives worldwide through the momentum and wealth created by employee ownership”.
“As an employee-owned company, many of our own staff will reap the rewards of the hard work they’ve put in over the years.
“Our growth over the past couple of years has been enormous, but over the next few years, we’re aiming to be West Cork’s first unicorn, and we’re on track to achieve that.”
“This is something that is exciting for many reasons – including the fact that as an employee-owned company, many of our own staff will reap the rewards of the hard work they’ve put in over the years.”
Taoiseach Micheál Martin was in Clonakilty to mark the announcement. He said: “The story of Global Shares is a remarkable one, illustrating how from small beginnings a company can grow and develop a global footprint.
“It is an inspiring example of what can be achieved through talent and ambition,” he said.
Julie Sinnamon, chief executive of Enterprise Ireland, said the agency supported Global Shares’ growth from Clonakilty into over 100 markets worldwide.
“We are delighted to support the new jobs which will help further Global Shares’ innovation focus and look forward to continuing to support their global ambitions for many years to come.”