Global insurance giant MetLife celebrated the official opening of its new global technology campus in Galway this week. With plans to employ approximately 200 skilled IT professionals when at full capacity, the new campus represents a major investment in the digital initiatives that will help the company transform its customers’ experience around the globe.
The official launch on Tuesday was attended by An Tánaiste and Minister for Business, Enterprise, and Innovation, Frances Fitzgerald, Minister of State with Responsibility for Financial Services and Insurance, Michael D’Arcy, and other dignitaries at the new MetLife campus in Hynes Buildings, St Augustine Street. MetLife executive leaders from around the world were also present at the facility.
“Digital innovation continues to reshape our lives and the way we view the future, and it reinforces the reality that every company needs to become a technology company in order to survive,” said Marty Lippert, executive vice president and head of MetLife Global Technology and Operations, at the launch. “Our new global technology campus in Galway will be a dynamic centre of change, and it will be at the heart of creating the digital solutions that will transform how our customers interact with us every day around the globe.
“We look forward to deepening our roots in Galway and Ireland, where we have found a business-friendly environment and a deep talent pool of skilled workers.”
Including its existing office in Dublin, MetLife’s presence in Ireland will grow to more than 500 employees once recruitment at the new Galway global technology campus is complete. The company plans to employ 200 people at the Galway campus.
Speaking at the office opening on Tuesday, Michel Khalaf, president of MetLife US and EMEA, noted: “MetLife’s new global technology campus builds on our significant presence in Ireland which is the hub of our European insurance businesses. Just as we have done in Dublin, we look forward to growing our workforce here in Galway in the coming years and contributing fully to the local community. Today is confirmation of our strong and successful link with Ireland and represents a vote of confidence in that relationship into the future.”
An Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald, said: “I am delighted to be here today with MetLife to help launch this wonderful new global technology campus in Galway. This is an extremely exciting project, and the Irish Government is very pleased that our ongoing work in driving competitiveness and providing quality skills is paying dividends in attracting cutting-edge projects like this. This development will see a further 200 people employed in Ireland, and we look forward to our continued fruitful relationship with MetLife in both its Galway and Dublin operations, well into the future.”
CEO of IDA Ireland, Martin Shanahan, added: “The opening of this new global technology campus is a significant step for MetLife, represents a substantial investment by the company and demonstrates very clear commitment to Galway and the west region. MetLife announced last year that it was establishing this campus with the creation of 200 jobs and this state-of-the-art permanent premises will allow them to continue to recruit up to that capacity. It shows too that Galway has both the required skills for global companies such as MetLife to establish and grow here and the property solutions they need. I wish MetLife all future success in Galway.”
A collaborative, green work environment
The new global technology campus also continues MetLife’s broader strategic effort of transforming the workplace experience by bringing employees together in state-of-the-art, collaborative environments, while reducing its geographic footprint and significantly lowering operating costs.
The Galway campus integrates design and technology, creating an energetic and human experience that blends Silicon Valley technologies with the Burren landscape to the south of the city. The office is an open environment focused on productivity, connectivity, diversity, and wellness.
The Galway global technology campus features work and collaboration spaces throughout the facility, informal meeting rooms which promote innovation, writable walls, and integrated video conferencing which connects employees worldwide. Other amenities available on site include adjustable sit-stand desks, a meditation room, two outdoor atria providing access to nature and allowing natural light to permeate the workspace, a games room, and outdoor bicycle racks.
Since opening its first Irish offices in Dublin in 2006, MetLife has also become an integral part of the country’s business community. Employees have contributed thousands of volunteer hours supporting local service projects, including Habitat for Humanity, Junior Achievement’s MetLife LifeChanger, and a MetLife Community Week in partnership with the Special Olympics. Additionally, since 2014, MetLife and MetLife Foundation have contributed approximately US$800,000 to support a wide range of community initiatives in Ireland.
From its founding through the end of 2014, MetLife Foundation has provided more than $670 million in grants and $70 million in programme-related investments globally to organisations addressing issues that have a positive impact in their communities. Today, the foundation is dedicated to advancing financial inclusion, committing $200 million to help build a secure future for individuals and communities around the world.