Minister D’Arcy leads Enterprise Ireland financial services trade visit to Zurich

21st September 2017

Michael D’Arcy TD, Minister of State at the Department of Finance, will lead an Enterprise Ireland fintech and financial services trade visit to Zurich today (21st September 2017).

The objective of the Minister’s visit is to raise the profile of Ireland’s financial services and fintech capabilities amongst key decision makers in the Swiss market.

Central to his itinerary in Zurich, Minister D’Arcy will attend the Enterprise Ireland seminar “Reinventing Financial Services through disruptive innovation”, after which he will address over 100 senior executives from the Swiss Finance & Technology Association, the Swiss Business Hub, the Irish Business Network in Switzerland, the Irish Funds and Enterprise Ireland client companies.

Speaking on his arrival in Zurich Minister D’Arcy said,

“The purpose of this trade visit is to further enhance the strong and mutually beneficial trading relationships between Irish and Swiss financial services and fintech companies. I welcome the opportunity to support Enterprise Ireland’s Financial Services and Fintech clients as they seek to win new business from Swiss partners. This trade event also offers an ideal platform to highlight Ireland as a global location of choice for specialised international financial services, building on our strengths in talent, technology, innovation and excellent client services, a key priority of our International Financial Services 2020 Strategy".

The 14 Enterprise Ireland client companies travelling to Zurich on the trade visit represent a cross-section of the 400 plus companies currently employing close to 40,000 people in the financial services sector in Ireland. The participating Enterprise Ireland clients are active across the spectrum of financial services and related software, spanning identity assurance management software, investment management, tax refund services, data analytics and payment solutions.

During his visit to Zurich Minister D’Arcy will visit the Kickstart Accelerator Impact Hub, deliver an address to the Irish Funds Seminar in Zurich and attend a number of meetings with high-profile companies and decision makers in the Swiss financial services sector.

Welcoming Minister D’Arcy to Zurich, Eddie Goodwin, Manager, Germany, Switzerland & Austria, Enterprise Ireland said;

“The Swiss market is an increasingly important market for Irish Fintech companies post-Brexit.  Enterprise Ireland is pro-actively engaged with more than 100 companies in the sector to help them take advantage of growth opportunities in sectors such as outsourced services, software and payments. In 2016, our clients increased their financial software and services to Switzerland by 9.2% and we expect to see further growth in 2017, largely driven by a growth in outsourcing these services and technologies. Enterprise Ireland will continue to work with key stakeholders to achieve the strategic goals set out in IFS2020.”

He continued, “Today’s visit by Minister D’Arcy supports Enterprise Ireland’s strategy to encourage overseas buyers and in this case potential Swiss customers to source their advantage through partnering with Irish financial services companies to avail of their innovative capabilities.  This trade visit is one of over 40 international trade visits which form a core part of the Enterprise Ireland Eurozone strategy and is focused on supporting our client companies to diversify into new markets as a way for them to build scale and expand their reach.


Notes to the editor

Switzerland is Ireland’s 5th largest trading partners with bilateral trade of €11.5Bn. It is Enterprise Ireland’s 11th largest export market. In 2016, Enterprise Ireland client companies exported €300m to Switzerland, an increase of 50% in the last 5 years.

Reinventing Financial Services through disruptive innovation

Speaker profiles:

Markus Graf – F10

Markus Graf is co-founder and focus of operations for the F10 Incubator & Accelerator. He is also co-founder of #SIXHackathon, co-, Head Innovation Management SIX Global IT and an inspiring speaker/enthusiast in all things fintech.

F10 was founded in January 2015 by Andreas Iten and Markus Graf. F10 is a Zurich based FinTech Incubator and Accelerator that supports and guides Startups in transforming their ideas into successful companies, all the while stimulating worldwide collaboration with international finance organizations. The accelerator already has a proven track record of innovation, acceleration and product creation for financial services.


Reuben Godfrey – Blockchain Association of Ireland

Reuben Godfrey established the Blockchain Association of Ireland in late 2016. Reuben has had an extensive commercial career in the pharmaceutical and technology industries and is a contributing journalist for several online publications. Blockchain Association of Ireland are a non-profit member-led organisation serving corporates, academics, and professionals to increase literacy and awareness of Blockchain technology in Ireland. Their mission is to establish Ireland as a Global hub for innovation in the areas, such as but not limited to: digital-currency, smart-contracts, fintech, insurtech, regtech, healthcare, agribusiness, retail, wider industry and non-commercial applications of blockchain.

Efi Pylarinou – Fintech Influencer

Efi Pylarinou is a multilingual/multicultural financial professional with more than 20 years’ experience, including but not limited to Wall Street expertise in a variety of asset classes (fixed income, emerging markets, structured products, hedge funds), as well as extensive content / publishing experience. She is a co-founder of Daily Fintech - an established, global, insight driven platform, and Fintech Genome - a P2P knowledge platform. She is also an Investor in Lykke shares and Advisor to the Pillar Project. A fintech enthusiast, her domain focuses heavily on innovations in capital markets & wealth management. Her work also spans finserv, digitisation projects, content for incubments, speaking engagements and marketing/branding development for start-ups. Efi was included in the 2016 Women in Fintech powerlist by Innovate Finance, in Women in Fintech DACH social ranking, and in the Global Fintech 80.



IFS2020 is the five-year Government strategy to drive the further growth and development of the international financial services sector in Ireland.  The Strategy has a clear vision for Ireland to be the recognised global location of choice for specialist international financial services.

The Strategy aims to increase the numbers employed in international financial services by 30% over the five years of the Strategy. This 30% equates to 10,000 new jobs in the IFS sector. In the first two years of IFS2020 we have seen a 13% increase in the numbers employed in IFS, placing us on track for achieving our jobs target by 2020. 

Minister D’Arcy is responsible for the implementation of the Strategy.


For more information contact:

Conor O'Donovan

Head of Communications

Enterprise Ireland

Conor O'Donovan

+353 87 967 1342

Grace Labanyi

Senior Executive, Corporate Communications

Enterprise Ireland

Grace Labanyi

01 727 2820