Ask a stranger what they know about the island of Jersey and they may tell you that it’s a beautiful part of the British Isles just off the coast of France. They may also tell you about its thriving finance and farming industries, or even wax lyrical about the delicious Jersey Royal potatoes and richly nutritious milk from the famous Jersey cow. Others may talk nostalgically about a childhood holiday to the island, playing on the long golden beaches, or even tell you about a more recent trip where they were able to relax and unwind as the sun set over the west coast dunes.
But there’s something else Jersey has been quietly getting on with in recent years that is now attracting the attention of global players: and that is its digital innovation. The small island has a fibre network to all homes and internet speeds second only to Singapore. It’s committed to a 5G network, has rolled out a digital test-bed proposition for start-ups, entrepreneurs and businesses to trial products and services, and major names are now making Jersey their business home.
The world’s leading cryptocurrency exchange Binance chose Jersey for its first base in Europe. The infrastructure, the digitally savvy workforce and the support of the government-backed development agency Digital Jersey all make doing business in
a well-regulated jurisdiction hassle-free.
Softbank chose the island as the home of its world-leading $100bn technology fund while agriculture research centre Rothamsted Research is using Jersey to create a digital twin of island farmland in order to test new ways of solving the big questions facing global food producers.
And, in turn, these businesses have a ready-made suite of support services to call upon: from lawyers and accountants to other professional service providers. All of that is made easier with a mature and continually innovating international finance centre on your doorstep.
Ask people in Jersey and they will tell you they are proud of their finance industry, tourist appeal, and agricultural produce and exports. But this small island’s big digital developments are now beginning to change the perception of all that Jersey does best.
I’m always ready to welcome new people and businesses looking to choose Jersey for their own digital growth – and I can promise you a splendid end to your day watching that sun set on the island where digital dreams are becoming a digital reality.