About the Ulster Society

Chartered Accountants Ulster Society is the oldest district society of the Institute and serves around 4,600 members throughout Northern Ireland. The Chairman is Richard Gillan.

The Ulster Society provides professional, educational and social services and events for its members (in practice, in business, in the public sector and charity/ voluntary sector) and is a strong voice for Northern Ireland's business sector. The Society also actively fosters relationships with other accountancy, professional organisations and government bodies.

 

An event examining the funding landscape for local small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) took place in Belfast this week. The ‘Access to Finance’ event, organised by Chartered Accountants Ulster Society in partnership with Invest Northern Ireland, InterTradeIreland and British Business Bank, brought Northern Ireland business leaders and advisers together to discuss the range of funding options available. At the event at Titanic Hotel Belfast, Gareth Murphy of We Are Vertigo and Yolanda Cooper of We Are Paradoxx talked about their experience of raising finance which has supported them in transforming their companies in a short space of time. As well as looking at the options presented by debt and equity funding, the event looked at the experience of taking a business to an Initial Public Offering (IPO) with Brendan Mooney of Kainos plc, James Fair of Fusion Antibodies plc, and Philip White of Diaceutics plc.  Hoping to inspire other ambitious CEOs to consider a stock market listing, Brendan said: “Becoming a plc is really not that difficult and represents a viable funding option for NI SMEs.” Richard Gillan, Chairman of Chartered Accountants Ulster Society said: “It’s important that businesses and their advisers are not only familiar with the more traditional finance options on offer, but also with the alternative funding solutions available to growing businesses. “Alternative sources of finance, offered across both debt and equity markets, are now more prevalent in the funding landscape and have a key role to play in allowing businesses to effectively execute their growth strategy. We’re very pleased to be able to play our role in examining these sources of finance, and how local businesses should approach them.” Susan Nightingale, Senior Manager for Northern Ireland, British Business Bank said: “Smaller businesses are very important to the NI economy, accounting for 75% of jobs and 71% of turnover in the private sector. Improving awareness of funding options and being able to identify the most appropriate funding package at a particular point in time is an essential component of their growth.” William McCulla, Director of Corporate Finance, Invest NI said: “While statistics show an increased awareness of alternative funding options such as mezzanine debt, peer to peer lending, venture capital, crowdfunding and stock market listings there is still some way to go. Events of this nature are essential if we are to continue to build on that momentum.” Shane O’Hanlon, Funding for Growth Manager, InterTradeIreland said: “Supporting SMEs on their growth journey is central to what we do, we will continue to work collaboratively with Invest NI and British Business Bank to promote the market offerings and to increase the demand for SME growth finance.” Pictured at the ‘Access to Finance - Alternative Finance Solutions’ event at Titanic Hotel Belfast are (from left) William McCulla, Invest NI; Judith Hartley, British Business Bank; Richard Gillan, Chairman, Chartered Accountants Ulster Society; and Shane O’Hanlon, InterTradeIreland.

Feb 07, 2020

Chartered Accountants Ulster Society has called on the political parties to waste no time in getting the restored institutions to deliver for the economy. Ulster Society Chairman Richard Gillan said there’s a long list of measures on the ‘to-do’ list that require urgent attention. Health, education, policing, rights issues and investment in roads and water infrastructure are rightly prioritised and speed of delivery will demonstrate commitment and determination. Mr Gillan welcomed new accountability measures and rules for Ministers and their special advisers, saying the steps were important to restore public confidence and trust. Mr Gillan said: “There is a clear objective to publish a new strategic level, outcomes-based Programme for Government. This will be informed by detailed stakeholder engagement and Chartered Accountants Ulster Society will want to participate in this important process. “We will be seeking early meetings with newly appointed Ministers to set out our views and to offer our professional assistance and advice. “Considerable investment will be required to lift the Northern Ireland economy from the economic doldrums. The lack of leadership for such a long time has had a very negative effect on the local economy, on business confidence and on the provision of public services. “Our members will be expecting our local politicians to put division aside and to deliver for all the people of Northern Ireland. We are hopeful that this can be the start of a new era of our politicians working positively together to secure a brighter future. The negotiation of ‘additional flexibilities and sensible practical measures’ with regards to trading with the EU, as outlined in the New Decade, New Approach document, must be a priority.”

Jan 13, 2020

Ulster’s Chartered Accountants gave out some Christmas presents and provided a boost to local children’s charities by presenting hundreds of toys to the Salvation Army and St. Vincent de Paul Family Appeal.  Chartered Accountants Ulster Society raised a total of £19,500 with support from event sponsor Barclays. This total will be shared between Friends of Kiwoko Hospital in Uganda and the Alzheimer’s Society.   The toys and funds were collected at the Society’s Christmas Charity Lunch at the Europa Hotel in Belfast, attended by over 500 Chartered Accountants.   Richard Gillan, Chairman of Chartered Accountants Ulster Society said: “Our Charity Lunch is one of our most important events and a fantastic opportunity to make Christmas a little bit brighter for a lot of families. “Chartered Accountants have raised money and donated toys which will bring some Christmas sparkle to children this Christmas. This event is always one of our busiest and most enjoyable events and it’s especially important at this time of year that we can support fantastic charities which make a big difference. We’re particularly pleased that with the support of Barclays we have been able to make this a record year in terms of funds raised.” John Mathers, Corporate Development Director of Barclays said: “Barclays is delighted to support the Ulster Society Christmas lunch, in this our fifth year of doing so.  The lunch is a highlight of the calendar for members and welcomes in the festive season.  Guests have once again been extremely generous in their donations of toys and money, helping to make a real difference to many both locally and further afield.” Pictured before the charity lunch with just a few of the toys collected are Richard Gillan, Chairman, Chartered Accountants Ulster Society; Zara Duffy, Head of Chartered Accountants Northern Ireland; and John Mathers of event sponsors Barclays.

Dec 16, 2019