Afiniti International Holdings, a data and software firm is set to move 90 of its staff to Bermuda under the one-year “digital nomad” residential certificate scheme, with plans to hire ten Bermudian employees while they set up a permanent presence on the island.
The announcement was made by the Minister of Labour, Jason Hayward on Thursday, with word that 442 certificates have been approved out of 557 applications.
According to the Minister, most of the staff employed by the artificial intelligence company are from Pakistan. They will “work at home in Bermuda while the company goes through the process of applying for traditional permits”.
Afiniti “anticipates significant growth in its work force”, which eventually will be 50 percent Bermudian.
“It’s worth noting that Afiniti requires no financial incentives, and expects to generate immediate increases in government fiscal revenues,” said Mr Hayward.
“I’m sure we all look forward to more companies following Afiniti’s lead. On behalf of the Government and people of Bermuda, I look forward to welcoming the Afiniti team to Bermuda, and ask that we be open to the possibilities this opportunity and others will present.”
Once the residency certificates have been approved, applicants will be eligible to move to Bermuda.
The Minister also noted that more information on job opportunities for Bermudians “will soon become available due to company relocations”.
Overall, he said: “This is very good news for Bermuda and Bermudians as these persons will be enjoying life in Bermuda while contributing daily to the local economy.
“From the vast number of applications received, it is clear that the Residential Certificate is proving to be quite popular,” he added.
“The certificate, along with Bermuda’s economic substance legislation, has demonstrated its ability to invite not only individuals or families but medium to large size companies as well.
“Afiniti is an American multinational data and software company, with a focus on developing artificial intelligence for use in customer call centers. It is a privately held company, with a valuation of $1.6 billion in 2017. In January 2018, Fortune magazine included Afiniti on its list of the 100 companies “leading the way in A.I.”
Affinit’si Board of Directors includes former President Jose Maria Aznar of Spain, former US Treasury Secretary John Snow, former Verizon President Larry Babbio, and former Premier of Bermuda, Dame Jennifer Smith.
“This is a great opportunity for Bermudians to join or launch a career with a technology company at the cutting edge of Artificial Intelligence,” said Mr Hayward.
“It is worth noting that Afiniti requires no financial incentives and expects to generate an immediate increase in the Government’s fiscal revenues. Their investment in Bermuda at this time, speaks volumes about our infrastructure, geographic location, and is a testament to this Government’s ability to create an environment that is attractive to companies such as this. I’m sure we all look forward to more companies following Afiniti’s lead.
“On behalf of the Government and people of Bermuda, I look forward to welcoming the Afiniti team to Bermuda, and ask that we be open to the possibilities this opportunity and others will present.”