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US fintech Stripe picks Dublin for new engineering hub
[LONDON] US payments firm Stripe said on Monday it would place its first engineering centre outside its home market in the Irish capital Dublin, attracted by the city's growing technology workforce and global outlook.
The company helps businesses, including food delivery service Deliveroo and ride-hailing firm Lyft Inc, to accept online payments and was valued at more than US$9 billion in its latest funding round. Its co-founders are Irish and Dublin was already home to its European headquarters.
CEO Patrick Collison and head of engineering David Singleton told Reuters the firm considered placing its first few dozen engineering jobs outside of the US in countries across Europe, but settled on Ireland because of its international approach and widening talent pool.
"Ireland has had... a consistent approach of being outward looking and globally minded," Mr Collison said, adding that aligns with Stripe's objectives as a company.
Dublin, alongside Frankfurt, Paris and Amsterdam, has been touted as a potential challenger to London as the European capital of financial technology after Brexit.
The British government sees retaining that title as key to London's status as a global financial hub. So far the vote to leave appears to have little impact on the city's importance for the sector.
Mr Collison said the lack of clarity around Britain's future outside the European Union had weighed on Stripe's choice.
"This decision was certainly not made by Brexit, but certainly when we were evaluating all the different countries across Europe the uncertainty was a factor," he said.
Stripe, which operates in 25 countries and has 1,000 employees globally, already has 100 people in the Irish capital, but so far all of its engineering teams have been placed in the US. Its headquarters are in San Francisco.
The new engineering hub will sit within its Dublin site, and the firm will hire a few dozen people to staff it in the coming years. They will focus on developing the firm's core payments product.
Mr Singleton said Stripe will invest over the long-term in the Dublin hub, which it sees as more than just a "back office to Europe".
"Dublin is our first engineering office outside of North America but over time I think Stripe will continue to become an increasingly global organisation," added Mr Collison.