A US-based commercial real estate company is to set up its new software development centre in Belfast, creating 25 new jobs.

Economy Minister Diane Dodds joined New York-based firm 'SquareFoot' to announce the investment as part of her week-long visit to the USA.

The visit includes meetings with potential investors in New York, as well as engagements with US politicians in Washington DC as part of the annual St Patrick's programme.

SquareFoot works with companies to help them find suitable office space, from initial search right through to lease negotiation. The company provides a technology-based solution ‘TourBook’ which schedules property visits, records photos and notes, and guides a property searcher through the whole process.

Minister Dodds said: “The company is offering very attractive, high-end salaries which will see the new roles contribute over £1.6million in additional salaries to the local economy."

Kevin Holland, Chief Executive of Invest Northern Ireland, said: “This announcement is a real testament to the quality and skills our workforce has to offer potential employers.

“Along with advising the company and showcasing everything that Northern Ireland has to offer as an investment location, we have also been able to secure the project for Northern Ireland with an offer of £100,000 towards the new roles.

"Attracting new investors is vital to the growth of our economy and we are delighted to welcome SquareFoot to Belfast.”

Jonathan Wasserstrum, founder and CEO of SquareFoot, said: “This new operation is central to our growth, and Invest NI’s support has helped us get the new team in Belfast up and running quickly. As a result, we will be able to scale our product and technology developments at a faster rate.”