New name for local gaming software development company
- Credit: Sarah Lucy brown
It was a little while ago that somebody coined the phrase - Silicon Suffolk - to recognise the growing importance of new high tech, computer and internet businesses.
From Cambridge to Martlesham, along the A14 corridor, hundreds of new jobs have been created.
Quietly, over the past decade, a lot of fledging companies have developed.
Many of them have kept a low profile while building expertise and reputations in their specialist areas.
In Ipswich one of them Derivco, has celebrated the opening of new refurbished offices, in Crown House, with an official visit by the mayor of Ipswich Glen Chisholm.
The company Derivco Ipswich Ltd, is a gaming software development company, specialising in on-line gaming and primarily, sports betting, which is an enormous growth industry.
Among its clients are Betway, sponsors of West Ham United.
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This Ipswich office gives the impression of a young community, quiet and clean with young men and women working at their computers.
It is purely about product development, rather than sales.
The company started its life, about 13 years ago, as Ludologic Ltd and has grown over that time.
The re-branding, as Derivco, recognises its place in what is now a global business.
Other offices are South Africa, Sweden, Estonia and Hong Kong.
The group employs around 1,400 to 1,500 staff around the world, with 60 employed here in Ipswich in software development.
Director Matt David said: “We work with big organisations around the world.”
Matt David has been with the company since those early days in Ipswich and they have quietly got on with their work, very well known in the industry, but without a massive local profile.
He said: “I started as a maths guy and progressed, becoming a project manager, and took over as boss four years ago.
“There are a lot of youngsters here and a few of us have been here since the start, including Stoo Barber who leads one of our development teams.
“The office has been fully refurbished for us, and we have taken on 30% more office space, it is more useable space too.”
The office suite includes a demo room, with giant plasma screens and armchairs, where designers can get together to show and critique new product, and to get input from colleagues.
The office environment includes a break-out area, for lunches and socialising, which includes TVs, a pool table and table football.
Every day free lunches are delivered by the St Nicholas Stores delicatessen and other employee benefits include free local gym membership.
“And we have installed showers so that the guys who cycle to work can freshen up,” added Matt.
It was all about making it a friendly environment to attract and retain staff.
“This is a very creative place and we work very hard to make sure the office atmopshere is relaxed and innovative.
“Innovation is our business,” he explained. “It is very important it is a creative environment.
There was even a mini putting green when I visited on opening day.
Matt added: “It is important for us to attract really talented people and we have to create a great environment to come into.”
Some day - all offices will be like this.