Over 120 people attended the second National ePayments conference at CityNorth hotel on Friday, September 2nd, to hear about the future of the Payments sector, globally and in Ireland. The keynote speaker, Chris Skinner, described as “as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News” gave a fascinating insight into how the increase in global population, and the growth of mobile payments and digital identification, will influence how we buy and sell to each other. Chris highlighted how “over 50% of the global population do not have access to financial systems, and Payment firms will have to successfully address how people will ‘connect globally in real time’ to stay relevant in the future”.
An M1 ‘Digital Payments Cluster’ is a key part of the recently published NorthEast Action Plan for Jobs which proposes the creation of a ‘digital payments hub’ in Drogheda, and along the M1 economic corridor with the potential to create hundreds of sustainable new jobs.
The Minister for Business and Employment Ged Nash TD launched the new Action Plan for Jobs for the North East/North West on November 30th, which aims to increase employment by 10-15%, resulting in 28,000 more jobs in the Border region by 2020.
FS Sector Lead Invest NI
Karen is responsible for the development of the multinational Financial Services and Professional Services Sector, including FinTech, in Northern Ireland. She also manages a portfolio if major existing in the FS Sector.
A graduate in Chemical Engineering from Queens University, Karen worked as a production manager for Coats Viyella and as a consultant for Reuters Healthcare and Parity, before joining Northern Ireland’s economic development agency, in 1999. She initially worked with a number of start-up companies in the ICT and Life Sciences sectors and with spin-out companies from the two local universities. She moved to the Financial Services sector in June 2005.
Simon is a highly experienced and innovative company executive with a passion for innovation, technology and leadership. He has almost 20 years of professional experience across multiple industries and organisational environments including sales leadership, organizational development and commercial leadership roles. Over the past 4 years, Simon has been leading Digital DNA, the company behind the biggest tech and business community events in Northern Ireland.
An accomplished networker and communicator, Simon maintains a strong network throughout the public and private sector, including media outlets, policy makers, the investment community and business leaders from many high growth tech companies and scaling startups in the Northern Ireland tech ecosystem.
EMEA Outsource (OS) leader for Partner billing, invoice and strategy at PayPal. Having commenced my career previously with Vodafone Ireland as a customer care agent, I joined PayPal in 2013 as an analyst member of the Workforce Management (WFM) team. My current role sees me responsible for managing PayPal’s EMEA customer contact strategy and billing with all of PayPal’s EMEA OS partners providing service to our customers in all EMEA markets. I’m a member of the site leadership board for the operation of PayPal’s Dundalk site in Ireland. I’m also a huge music fan – keep your eyes peeled for me outside the office.
Ronan is the Director of Business, Innovation and Enterprise at the Mill Enterprise Centre in Drogheda. He is a multi-award winner for Entrepreneurship at both a National and World level. Ronan’s specialties are in the areas of business strategy, revenue management, and profit optimisation.
Ronan has a proven track record of driving company turnarounds through strong revenue growth and a disciplined commercial focus. Qualified with an MBA from Trinity College Dublin, with an undergraduate degree in Economics as well as postgraduate qualifications in Entrepreneurship as well as a Masters Strategic Management & Planning, (Graduate H.Dip & MBS) from University College Dublin (UCD).
Prior to joining the Mill, Ronan worked as the Director of Revenue, Pricing, and Deal Management for the Mater Private Hospital Network. Ronan has over 15 years of experience in Director and senior Commercial roles across tourism, aviation, telecoms, and healthcare and has worked across the Caribbean and in North Africa.
Peter Rowan is responsible for leading YapStone’s International Operations and Global Customer Support, based in the company’s Drogheda, Ireland office. With a 35-year career that has spanned roles with UK Law Enforcement as well as global leaders in the payments industry, including PayPal and Visa, Peter is focused on scaling international operations and expanding global customer support to 24/7/365 to support YapStone partners. Previous to YapStone, Peter was Global Director of Trust & Safety at Twitter where he was led global teams across 3 offices, Dublin, San Francisco and Singapore. Peter received an MBA degree from The Henley Business School in the UK.
David Burns is the Science, Technology & Innovation Manager within the Strategy and Policy Directorate at InterTradeIreland. His responsibilities include consulting on the cross-border implications of science and technology developments, as well as managing a cross-border cluster and network support programme, Synergy, which explores new opportunities for all island collaboration that will result in mutual economic benefit for Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Prior to this, David worked as a technology platform lead within a multinational R&D firm. David has a wide range of experience gained from working in small molecule discovery within the life and agri-science sectors. His skills range from business strategy development to digital and automation change leadership with a passion for the deployment of digital technology within a business.
Mr Aidan Browne, Head of Innovation & Business Development, Dundalk Institute of Technology
With significant experience both in the private sector and Higher Education Sector Aidan Browne is currently Head of the Innovation and Business Development function with responsibility for enterprise development, industry engagement, Technology Transfer and commercial output at Dundalk Institute of Technology. Aidan is heavily involved in the economic development landscape in the North East region. Aidan also holds a number of directorship roles in not-for-profits in the enterprise support and financing domain specialising in working with high tech, knowledge intensive companies during their start-up and early growth phases
Alan is a Venture Leader with NDRC, where he supports the development of early stage tech startups. He has spent 15 years helping Founders to develop their product-market fit, business and investment strategies. Alan has been a founder and investor in several Angel/VC funded startups already.
He also has a keen interest in social entrepreneurship and regional economic development, supporting social enterprise such as Mill Enterprise Centre, MyStreetsTours and Irish Forum for Natural Capital