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UK call centre moves 100 jobs to India

Vertex aims to set up a joint venture operation in New Delhi which will replace its technology services division.

india Updated: Jan 16, 2006 10:45 IST

A leading call centre firm in Britain's Merseyside region has announced its decision to move 100 jobs to New Delhi.

Vertex, a subsidiary of Warrington-based United Utilities, said the IT losses would be split between its sites in Knowsley's Phoenix House, King's Business Park in Prescot and Manchester city centre.

The firm aims to set up a joint venture operation in New Delhi which will replace its technology services division, currently employing around 220 people.

Vertex said it hopes the jobs losses will be absorbed through redeployment although it has not ruled out the possibility of compulsory redundancies in the near future.

Joe Mehigan, the firm's chief technology officer, told the British media: "We need to ensure that our technology business continues to prosper. The company will establish a joint UK and India operation for parts of its IT development.

"This will operate from Vertex's established centre in New Delhi. Vertex will discuss all options for its affected employees including redeployment and, in the worst-case scenario, redundancy."

Meanwhile, New Delhi is also reported to be the base for a manufacturing plant for Bangor-based haircare products maker Denman International. The decision follows the company's acquisition of a major shareholding in a distribution company in New Delhi with which it has had a working relationship for nearly 10 years.

The joint venture is expected to lead Denman to diversify from its core hairbrushes to related products including toothbrushes, wire brushes, brooms and cleaning brushes.

Denman, formed in 1972 and which employs around 200 staff in Bangor, said the new manufacturing arrangements were to service the Indian market only, and insisted that no jobs would be relocated to the low-wages region.

Denman, which manufactures and markets an internationally renowned range of professional haircare accessories for 60 countries, bought the stake in Brushman (India) Ltd.

An agreement was reached after Brushman's principal Kapil Kumar met Denman's board of directors in Bangor before Christmas. Formal papers are expected to be signed in New Delhi this week.

Brushman has been Denman's Indian distributor since 1996, during which time it has established Denman as one of the most prominent haircare brands in Asia.

"This is a big opportunity for us," Denman's managing director John Rainey said. "We've had a significant presence in the Indian market for a decade, but haven't had the depth of penetration.

"But this new state-of-the-art facility in Delhi will offer opportunities for Brushman to make Denman hairbrushes for the Indian market."

First Published: Jan 16, 2006 10:36 IST