EY (the rebranded Ernst and Young) will create nearly 500 jobs in Belfast with the establishment of a new auditing and consultancy unit.
The section will mainly target clients across the UK, Europe and Middle East, and will not compete with its large existing businesses in the North and the Republic, which mainly work with domestic clients. Many of the new employees will be mobile workers, travelling in and out of the country on jobs.
The 486 new roles will be rolled out over the next four years. The company's current Belfast office has space for about 100 more people, but EY will eventually look for new premises as recruitment ramps up. The majority of roles will be filled by experienced recruits, but there will also be some graduate places available.
The decision to locate the business in Northern Ireland is a significant one, the company said. "Alternative global locations were considered by the company, so securing these high-quality jobs has been a real coup," Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said.
"This announcement sends an unambiguous message to international investors to have confidence in Northern Ireland as a competitive location from which to grow their business.
"This investment could have gone to a number of other locations and the decision to choose Belfast is based on the availability of a skilled, loyal and committed workforce and our robust infrastructure which provides reliable, high-speed and cost-effective connectivity," she said.
A cash injection from trade promotion body Invest NI – the Northern equivalent of IDA Ireland – also helped.