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Wonga ramps up presence here with plans to employ 100 staff

WONGA, the short-term cash-flow lender, is in the process of bringing its headcount to 100 staff in Dublin. The company is backed by Balderton Capital, the private equity firm founded by Irish businessman Barry Maloney.

The company has taken a floor in the Fitzwilliam Business Centre on Dublin's Sir John Rogerson's Quay and it already quietly has dozens of staff here as it prepares to ramp up its presence further.

It is currently hiring software developers, support engineers, site reliability engineers and fraud agents in Dublin.

Wonga's pitch to potential employees is that it is "not a corporate company", and that it allows "casual wear" as well as offering sports and social clubs. The company also claims it is an "extremely ethical company", and that it turns down 70 per cent of loan applications and caps interest payments after two months.

A spokesperson declined to comment on its hiring plans.

"While Wonga does have a presence in Ireland, we're a growing global business with operations across the world," he said. "As you'd expect from a leading digital finance business, we're always on the lookout for the brightest people."

Last year Wonga was linked to a possible flotation in America with a valuation of up to €1.5bn, but these plans are on hold. Wonga was founded by South African Errol Damelin.

Wonga states that its typical customer is a creditworthy borrower seeking speed and convenience to cover short-term cash flow problems.

In 2011, Wonga was forced to write off almost £77m of bad loans, but it has since greatly improved its performance in this area.

Irish Independent