THE boss of a booming financial services company, which has more than doubled its workforce over the past two years, is urging others to set up shop in Wrexham.
Paul Barlow, Site Lead at DTCC Wrexham, based on Wrexham Industrial Estate, says the town is a “great place to do business” and this should be shouted from the rooftops.
That will be his message when he addresses a meeting of Wrexham Business Professionals (WBP) at the Ramada Plaza Hotel.
The group is made up of highly-skilled professional firms of solicitors, accountants and other businesses working together to raise the profile of expertise and enterprise that exists across the Welsh region.
The event will focus around “powering regional prosperity” with special reference to the burgeoning local financial services sector.
Other speakers include Ken Skates AM, the newly-appointed Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure, and Chris Nott, Welsh Government Chair of the Financial and Professional Services Panel.
The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC)’s Avox Data Services was established in 2003 to deliver high quality information about companies involved with global financial markets, such as company names, addresses, ownership structure and industry classifications.
Its team of analysts independently research information on companies in more than 180 countries.
In the spring of 2014, DTCC began an expansion programme, which has seen its team in Wrexham more than double to 550.
Its success has won praise from Prime Minister David Cameron, who hailed its expansion as a “great vote of confidence in Wrexham”, as well as Wales’s First Minister Carwyn Jones, who commended DTCC’s approach to investment in the local communities it operates.
Mr Barlow joined DTCC after a 26-year career with Barclays Bank, the last decade of which he headed up global change management programmes.
He joined in 2006, and has since played a prime role in growing the Wrexham-based operation to its current headcount of over 550, with additional job opportunities forecast through 2016/17.
His responsibilities include spearheading the development, communication and implementation of operational strategy and process.
Mr Barlow also commits time and energy to building strong external relationships with local business and education leaders, championing
DTCC as an employer of choice in the area.
He said: “Everybody likes a success story and DTCC’s growth is very much that. I will use this as the basis of my speech to Wrexham Business Professionals.
“The original, Wrexham operation, was the brainchild of two entrepreneurs: an Englishman, called Steve French and, a Canadian, Ken Price – who were working for a risk management company.
“It was born in 2003 and started to take on staff from 2005 as it gained traction in the marketplace.
“They eventually needed competitively-priced offices. They looked around and came across Redwither Tower and things went on from there.
“Our growth has been very much about the art of the possible.
“You’ll often hear talk about skills shortages and so on, but I am going to turn that on its head.
“North Wales has the right ingredients: talented individuals, a strong student population and a supportive community.
“You need to build partnerships and we’ve been doing that successfully with Coleg Cambria and Wrexham Glyndwr University.
“We’ve invested in our people and developed them into the excellent leaders that they are today.”
Mr Barlow added: “Wrexham is a great place to do business.
“We have plans to continue to expand and invest in this site.”
Mr Barlow revealed that he and his top team have just been looking at what the recent referendum in favour of Britain’s exit from the European Union might mean to their business.
He said: “ The office plays a critical role in our ability to serve the industry and our clients, and is essential to our long-term success.”
Gill Kreft, the chair of Wrexham Business Professionals, said: “We’re delighted that we have such a high-powered line-up for our next meeting.
“The DTCC success story is truly inspirational and Paul deserves great credit for the way in which he has steered the development and growth of the Wrexham operation to the point where they are now employing over 550, all of whom are helping to generate prosperity for the local area.
“I am sure he will have some fascinating insights to share with the audience who will be able to apply some of those lessons to make their own businesses even more successful.”
For more information contact Kate Edwards from Wrexham Business Professionals firstname.lastname@example.org or ring her on 01978 752500.