Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Monday, Sep 02, 2002
Info-Tech - IT-enabled Services
Aspinwall mulls call centre foray
KOCHI, Sept. 1
THE 135 year-old Aspinwall & Co Ltd is entering into the surprise sectors of Kerala - information technology, tourism and biotechnology.
Speaking to newspersons, Mr N.R. Pai, Chief Executive of the Aspinwall group, said that the company had been striving to shed its traditional image and stride into new and novel ventures for close to two decades now.
The company plans to set up a 200-seater call centre with an investment of Rs 10 crore and an employment potential for 450 staff.
An inflow of around $1.5 million is expected into the State at the end of the first year itself.
As a first step in this direction, the company plans to set up a manpower training centre of international standards and efficiency, which is expected to go on stream by the middle of September.
The AA Plus Academy, as the training centre is to be named, will not only impart training to trainees recruited to the Aspinwall call centre but for other call centres sprouting up in all parts of the country.
The academy would impart training in communicative English, accent neutralisation and nuances of concluding a deal over telephone.
It will be located at Ernakulam and will be able to accommodate 100 trainees at a time. The duration of the course will be a month.
There are plans to start additional training centres across the State in principal cities to create a contingency of knowledge workers to cater to the business needs of the emerging IT revolution, Mr Pai said.
Both the call centre and the academy are being set up in technical association with the Adityaa call centre of Bangalore.
The company has already entered into a contract to handle health-related products for a customer in the UK as well as for telemarketing of insurance products in the US.
In the tourism field, Aspinwall has already started marketing package tours with accent on heritage and eco-tourism.
The company is also planning to enter into biotechnology sector in the near future.
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