R3, the American blockchain solutions provider with offices in London, Dublin, New York, and Singapore, opens its first Eastern European R&D hub in Sofia, Bulgaria. The American company partners with INDUSTRIA, a UK-Bulgarian blockchain company, to build their team of software engineers, and other commercial and client-facing roles. The company plans to hire 50 employees by the end of this year and 50 more by the end of 2023.
“Our plans are to extend our product teams from London with three departments opening up in Sofia. We are looking to grow the R&D hub across a variety of roles ranging from Product Managers to QA, Engineers, and Architects,” the management team of INDUSTRIA told The Recursive.
The Sofia-based crew will join forces with their international teammates in the development of the R3’s Corda and Conclave platforms. Corda is a distributed ledger technology (DLT) platform for fast financial solutions. While Conclave allows the development of applications for secure data transfer among multiple parties. Petko Karamotchev will lead the office in Bulgaria while continuing in his current position as executive director of INDUSTRIA.
R3 and INDUSTRIA won’t reveal the sum of the investment in the Bulgarian office. The leading Bulgarian business media “Capital” estimates that it will be more than €10M, distributed in the next 2 years.
Tech talent and booming fintech sector
“Enterprise blockchain is being deployed by some of the world’s largest financial services companies, and R3 is at the forefront of this revolution. At our core, we are a people and technology company, and we recognize that continued investment in our personnel is critical to our success. We chose Bulgaria because of its burgeoning fintech sector and deep pool of technical talent. We’re delighted to build on our partnership with INDUSTRIA and look forward to building a strong presence in Sofia.”, David E. Rutter, CEO of R3 says in the press release.
The CEO of INDUSTRIA Petko Karamotchev adds that the new R&D hub will foster a new direction where both companies can improve the global fintech landscape.
What led to the deal?
The companies already work together on the digitalization of the bank sector in 20 Arab countries with the help of digital currencies.
“INDUSTRIA has worked successfully with R3 for several years. This fulfilling partnership is the base of our expansion into Bulgaria and the opening of the R&D hub. The talent technology pool is another reason to believe our first Eastern European hub will be a huge success,” the management team of INDUSTRIA shares for The Recursive.
The partnership between R3 and INDUSTRIA will step on local talent to push the growth of R3’s blockchain and confidential computing-based services. The engineering team in the Bulgarian R&D hub will ensure that R3 will continue providing high-quality blockchain solutions to over 400 financial services firms that use their Corda platform.
This collaboration is yet another example of the growing Bulgarian fintech ecosystem despite the setbacks brought by the pandemic in the last 2 years. Bulgarian fintech companies reached total operating revenue of over USD 800 million in 2021, setting a new all-time high.