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David Pendered Columns

Deluxe Corp. cites sustainable values in new offices in Sandy Springs, Minneapolis

David Pendered
Deluxe, Sandy Springs Deluxe Corp. will replace the name Fiserv on the monument of the Glenridge Highlands Two office tower in Sandy Springs. Credit: David Pendered

By David Pendered

Recent headlines about Deluxe Corp. have focused on the 700 high tech, $90,000-plus salary jobs it is to bring to Sandy Springs. Barry McCarthy chose his words in a recent conversation to shine a light on corporate values that include community outreach – without mentioning his own lengthy record of service.

Deluxe marquis

The Deluxe Corp. name will top a building at the Glenridge Highlands office park, located near the northwest corner of the intersection of Ga. 400 and Glenridge Connector. Credit: Deluxe

McCarthy sounded a similar theme in Minneapolis on Monday, when Deluxe announced the move of its headquarters from suburban Minneapolis to the central city: “Moving to downtown Minneapolis is an exciting next step … deepening our community involvement.”

These sorts of sustainable values, which involve a corporation’s environmental, social and governance behaviors, are coming under scrutiny from investors and civic leaders around the world, as noted in a 2019 report by the International Monetary Fund. Just last week, Georgia Tech President Ángel Cabrera committed to the 17 goals outlined in the U.N.’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. McCarthy’s outlook puts Deluxe in this arena.

“We are a significant company,” McCarthy said in a conversation last week. “Responsibility comes with that.”

McCarthy serves as Deluxe’s president/CEO, and director. The company has a market cap of $1.09 billion and sales of about $2 billion; earnings per share have exceeded analyst ranges in each of the last four quarters, according to a dashboard provided by wsj.com. Deluxe has grown historically through acquisition and now is focused on expanding from printing checks to providing business technology services, McCarthy said. The Sandy Springs office is to house software development, product and program management, innovation, data analytics, and artificial intelligence, according to a statement from the governor’s office.

Barry McCarthy

Barry McCarthy

For McCarthy, responsibility manifests itself in services on the boards that his forbes.com profile lists as The Woodruff Foundation, Technology Association of Georgia, Junior Achievement of Georgia, Inc. and Catholic Charities Atlanta.

McCarthy also has helped create a system to educate the workforce of the future. He played a central role in establishing the Georgia FinTech Academy, which was started in 2018 as a joint venture between the state’s fintech industry and the University System of Georgia. McCarthy cited the region’s skilled tech workforce as a reason to locate Deluxe’s new FinTech and Customer Innovation Center in an office tower in Sandy Springs, close to transit, roadways, restaurants and other support services.

“Barry McCarthy has been an integral force in metro Atlanta’s fintech community through the years,” Katie Kirkpatrick, president and CEO of the Metro Atlanta Chamber, said in a statement. “The decision to locate Deluxe’s new FinTech and Customer Innovation Center and office complex here demonstrates Barry’s commitment to our region and highlights our continued reputation as a fintech leader.”

Metro Atlanta resident Paul Garcia, who was elected Aug. 18 to the board of Deluxe, also brings a lengthy history of community service in metro Atlanta. Garcia has served on boards of the Metro Atlanta Chamber and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Pace Academy named him a life trustee after his service as board chair. Garcia serves on the board at Truist Financial Trust, and is the retired chair/CEO of Atlanta-based Global Payments, Inc.

Deluxe, Sandy Springs

Deluxe Corp. will replace the name Fiserv on the monument of the Glenridge Highlands Two office tower in Sandy Springs. Credit: David Pendered

In the conversation last week, McCarthy gave the elevator-length presentation on Duluxe – a legacy company founded 105 years ago as a check printer, which is transforming into a business technology firm offering four core services: payments; cloud services; promotional products, and checks.

Jim Cramer, the stockbroker turned TV host, featured McCarthy on Feb. 24 episode and suggested the company could be an undervalued opportunity for investors.

McCarthy, in the conversation last week, outlined social values that are significant for the company:

  • Every employee is a shareholder;
  • Every employee gets three days off each year to volunteer on a community project;
  • Production of an unscripted, half-hour long series of documentaries that showcase efforts by small businesses and small towns to reenergize themselves.

“This is the new neighbor,” McCarthy said of Deluxe’s new presence in Sandy Springs.

 

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David Pendered
David Pendered

David Pendered, Managing Editor, is an Atlanta journalist with more than 30 years experience reporting on the region’s urban affairs, from Atlanta City Hall to the state Capitol. Since 2008, he has written for print and digital publications, and advised on media and governmental affairs. Previously, he spent more than 26 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and won awards for his coverage of schools and urban development. David graduated from North Carolina State University and was a Western Knight Center Fellow.

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