Economic advisory OCO Global names Kelly Clark as Consulting Director

10 April 2018 4 min. read
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Northern Ireland headquartered consultancy OCO has confirmed the appointment of governmental project expert Dr Kelly Clark. As the firm seeks to strengthen its support for governments and businesses globally, former KPMG Associate Director Clark will work as OCO’s new Consulting Director.

Founded in 2001, OCO has spent the last 17 years in business, providing economic development solutions to leading organisations including JETRO, JobsOhio, Enterprise Florida, Invest Hong Kong, Invest in France, UNCTAD, IEDC and WAIPA. The trade and investment consultancy employs a multilingual team of over 60 consultants in offices in London, Paris, Frankfurt, Bogota, New York and Tokyo, alongside the firm’s headquarters in Belfast.

Most recently the firm was engaged by the UK Department of International Trade and Investment (DIT), with OCO working as an exclusive partner to support UK companies exploring expansion opportunities in North America. Similar to the role that Big Four firm PwC occupied with the DIT’s campaign relating to the Asia Pacific region, this sees OCO provide a wide range of trade support services to both new and experienced exporters, in order to help boost the UK’s overall export target.Dr Kelly Clark, Consulting Director - OCOAlongside such high-profile engagements, OCO has also leveraged targeted acquisitions to enhance its growth via inorganic means. In March of 2017, the Belfast-based firm responded to the triggering of Article 50 by purchasing the British Business Centre in Dubai, from British Business Group, United Arab Emirates. OCO announced the move as a means to helping companies conquer markets in the Middle East, as the business world reacts to news of the timing of Article 50.

Now, the economic advisory consultancy has announced the expansion of its pool of specialist consultants in order to help meet a growing workload. Former Northern Ireland Civil Servant, Dr Kelly Clark, has been appointed by the firm to head-up its government and business advisory team. Clark joins from the Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS), having formerly led governmental projects such as UK Open Government Action plan, and the OECD Review of Public Governance in Northern Ireland. She also managed the £4.5 million Executive-funded programme, the Cross Cutting Reform Programme, consisting of 30 eclectic reform projects operating on a cross-departmental basis.

Prior to this, she spent seven years as an Associate Director with the Irish wing of Big Four professional services firm KPMG, leading a range of complex projects assisting public and private sector organisations to formulate and implement solutions relating to their strategy, structure and operations. She worked extensively in the home affairs and financial services sectors with clients based across the UK, Ireland and the US.

Clark, who obtained her Doctorate in Politics at Queen’s University Belfast, joins as the company looks to strengthen its support to governments and businesses, in both the UK and internationally, seeking to attract investment and to identify and benefit from expansion opportunities worldwide. As OCO’s new Consulting Director, Clark will lead the firm’s global consulting business, working across the OCO Global network of offices.

Commenting on the appointment, OCO Global CEO, Mark O’Connell said, “We are delighted to welcome Kelly to our team, bringing with her extensive consulting experience across both the public and private sectors. She joins at a hugely exciting time for OCO as we expand our services both in the UK and internationally, grow our client list and continue to support businesses in exporting across the Atlantic and around the world. As someone who is ambitious and passionate about the industry, Kelly will be integral to our long-term business strategy and I’m confident she will make an immediate impact.”

Clark herself added, “I am thrilled and excited to be joining a very talented team at OCO, which is well-known for its client service and deep knowledge of the global markets it operates in. I wish to build on the strong existing relationships within OCO’s network and aim to utilise my experience to expand our client base further.”