An award winning international entrepreneur has become the first CEO of a new global payroll business which has been set up in Jersey. Acrede Global Solutions delivers payroll services for clients both in Jersey and across the world, from its offices at Harbour Reach on the St Helier Waterfront. Its first CEO is Karen Paterson, who moves to the Island with a very strong track record in international business. Previously, she set up a global payroll provider and grew it to achieve an annual turnover of $15m, with offices in five countries. In recognition for this, in 2009 she was named CBI “Entrepreneur of the Year, as well as “Best Entrepreneur EMEA” at the Stevie Awards for Women in the US. In 2010 she was recognised as Entrepreneur of the Year at the Fast Growth Awards, and her company won International Business of the Year and the T-Mobile Fast Growth Business of the Year Award.

With the assistance of Jersey Enterprise, Karen has now chosen to join Acrede Global Solutions in Jersey. Her team has developed a new software system which enables Acrede to deliver payroll services efficiently to any country in the world, using what known as “cloud” technology. Effectively this means that the necessary payroll software is provided on a ‘pay as you go’ basis making it cost effective for businesses of all sizes, particularly those looking to grow.

The Acrede system complies with the most stringent international data security and compliance standards; each individual user has to log in with a biometric USB stick, which recognises their fingerprint.

“We thought long and hard about where to settle, and Jersey came top of the list”, says Karen. “We considered Switzerland, Singapore and California, but Jersey offered the best mix of quality of life, practicality and an excellent business environment. There’s no point being successful in business if you haven’t also created a safe and happy environment for your family, and Jersey enables us to do just that. We are truly delighted to be based here, both from a business and a family point of view.”

Jersey Enterprise has assisted Acrede with its development in Jersey. Director of International Trade and Inward Investment, Wayne Gallichan said: “Karen comes to Jersey with an enviable track record of international business success; we are very proud that Acrede has chosen Jersey in which to headquarter the business, as it fits exactly with the model for new growth which the Island is looking for. Having international business leaders of Karen’s calibre choosing to move to the Island, and create new jobs, is a considerable benefit when we are promoting the merits of locating in Jersey”.

The Acrede system works by providing bespoke payroll software, which clients can access securely over the internet on demand, whenever they need to do.. The technology platform has been built specially to deliver accuracy, security, business process management and compliance; it also has a reporting function to deliver intelligence directly to users’ desktops. The Acrede system is also greener than most other providers, because it uses less power consumption, as well as reducing the volume of paper wasted.

“Technology has developed considerably in the last ten years, and Acrede has been set up to fully harness these benefits for our clients. Running a new business on the scale of Acrede is an exciting challenge, but one I am thoroughly looking forward to”, said Karen. “We have ambitious plans for growth, and fully intend to be a champion for Jersey on the international stage for many years to come”.