by Richard Buckley, Editor, Business Eye

Ulster Bank has supported a second Northern Ireland tech company in recent months that has made a major acquisition. Ulster Bank announced in February that it had backed Derry-based Learning Pool to acquire a Colorado-headquartered e-learning company.


Now it reveals that it has this month provided support to Field Service Management (FSM) software company Totalmobile, which has just acquired Cognito iQ, a Newbury-based provider of cloud-based mobile workforce management and analytics technology solutions.

Ulster Bank has provided a comprehensive funding solution to Totalmobile, which has added real-time performance analytics capabilities to its FSM technologies through the acquisition of Cognito iQ.

Northern Ireland’s tech sector has remained resilient in the Covid-19 era and continues to thrive, as a recent report by Tech Nation and job search engine Adzuna shows.

In 2020, international investment in Northern Irish tech companies rose to record levels, with local firms attracting £45.6 million in funding despite the challenges presented by the pandemic.

This marks a steep increase of 50% on the previous record of £30.4 million which was set in 2018.

Commenting on the bank’s support for the sector, Kenton Hilman, Head of Corporate and Property at Ulster Bank, said: “At Ulster Bank, we’re committed to supporting our technology sector customers, which range from emerging start-ups within our Entrepreneur Accelerator Programme to established SMEs and some of Northern Ireland’s largest tech employers. The sector will play an essential role in the immediate economic recovery post-pandemic and an even bigger role in driving future economic growth and job creation.

“Even under the challenging economic climate brought about by the pandemic we’re seeing continued investment and funding injections within the sector. Success in Northern Ireland’s tech cluster also continues to attract international technology companies to set up here and every year our homegrown successes are branching out further into new market sectors and regions.”

Jim Darragh, CEO of Totalmobile, said: “Ulster Bank’s support is very welcome and helps us fund the business with a view to meeting our growth ambitions. We are excited about the acquisition of Cognito iQ. Integrating the market-leading real-time analytics software developed by Cognito iQ with our existing portfolio of field service and mobile workforce management tools will position Totalmobile as the partner of choice for any customer seeking an effective solution to drive continuous improvement across their operations.”

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Damien Long, Relationship Director and Kenton Hilman, Head of Corporate and Property at Ulster Bank with Gary Adams, Chief Financial Officer at Totalmobile.

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