Leveraging local talent for rapid expansion

If Clearstream Cork exudes confidence and ambition, it’s with good reason. Clearstream, headquartered in Luxembourg and part of the German Stock Exchange group Deutsche Borse, has expanded rapidly since the former Citco operation was acquired in 2014. In the last three years, the workforce has almost doubled and will hit more than 600 in 2019. The growing team is about to re-locate to Navigation Square, a landmark new building in the regenerating Cork Docklands. Clearstream’s Cork operation is playing a central role in enhancing client delivery and service and reducing complexities in institutional finance.

"The talent and attitude of our team is simply outstanding"

David Brosnan became Managing Director three years ago, after working in various senior management roles in Citco and Clearstream. He has a steely determination, vision and purpose and he’s clear on the main reason the Cork operation is so successful. “The talent and attitude of our team is simply outstanding. We’re recognised internally as innovative and hard-working and our expertise is providing tangible client benefits and service enhancements across the company.”

Clearstream has been a keen local recruiter of top graduate talent. University College Cork (UCC) and Cork Institute of Technology (CIT) have been active partners in making sure graduates are not only equipped with the necessary academic credentials but that they’re also workplace ready. “Clearstream invests heavily in our talent but we also have high expectations from every member of our team. A key part of our ethos and success is centred on career progression and we offer fantastic fast-track opportunities for graduates with creative and commercial flair. Most of our existing management team came from within the company and have worked their way up. We recognise personal development is a critical factor when attracting top talent.”

There is growing competition for that talent in Cork as more investors recognise the potential in Ireland’s second city, which will be one of the few English-speaking cities in Europe post-Brexit. Brosnan sees this as an opportunity as opposed to a threat. “There are new and significant financial services companies locating in Cork but we don’t have any concerns. A growing number of highly qualified and experienced ex-pats are coming back to Cork, attracted by the better opportunities so  the investment is sustainable and perpetuates more success for the entire sector. Our collaborative approach with the third level institutions also helps with capacity planning for talent.”

Clearstream places employee satisfaction and wellbeing high up the corporate agenda. There is an active social element in the workplace with clubs for soccer, circuits and Pilates. “Our employee turnover last year was less than 3% and I’m committed to ensuring that we retain our talent and ensure work-life balance.”

The Cork operation, which has already grown its functions in risk and compliance, now plays a critical IT role in the organisation and plans to expand its capability in product development. “We’re excited by the opportunities and potential to shape and contribute to our corporate vision to further exploit Blockchain technology in our sector as part of the digitisation process”, David Brosnan concludes.