RHL, the contact centre owned by Scottish entrepreneur David Murray, has announced that it is to create 450 new jobs including 225 at a new operation in Clydebank.
RHL is to invest a total of £2.8 million in both the new facility at Clydebank and improvements to its existing Glasgow contact centre at Edmiston House, adjacent to Ibrox Stadium.
The company is now one of Europe's leading contact centres and selected Clydebank as the location for its new operation after a detailed analysis of locations around the world including a variety of sites in India.
David Murray, chairman and owner of Murray International Holdings - RHL's parent company - said: "This is an important development in the success story of RHL. The senior management team here, including executive chairman John McClelland and managing director John Boyle, has been instrumental in building a highly successful business. The company is now one of the largest employers in Scotland and represents some of the UK's top financial, utility and public sectors organisations.
"It is clear to me that where there is an opportunity to create a truly world class business in Scotland, such as RHL, we should do everything in our power to ensure we deliver it. In turn, the country and its people benefit through the jobs and related social improvements that such businesses create."
John McClelland, executive chairman of RHL, said: "Since I joined RHL a year ago, I have been keen to develop this business into a truly worldclass company that can compete and win business on a global scale. We are well on the way to creating such a company with our focus on leading edge contact centre technology and a knowledgeable workforce who can interact with customers naturally.
"We did investigate locations overseas when assessing the set up and operational plans for a new contact centre but after very detailed analysis it was clear to us that the right business decision for RHL and our customers was to locate our business in the UK."
John Boyle, managing director of RHL, said: "We expect our new contact centre to be operational in April and ready to service our increasing customer base in financial service businesses, utility companies and public sector organisations.
"Our investment in Clydebank brings our total investment in the last twelve months to £4.3 million and it is clear that this investment is providing our customers with measurable gains in their businesses.
"I would also highlight the important role that both Scottish Enterprise Dunbartonshire and the Scottish Executive have played in facilitating this move. Both organisations have been highly supportive."
Deputy Minister for Enterprise Lewis Macdonald, said: "I am delighted to welcome RHL's decision to site its new contact centre operation at Clydebank. We have approved a grant of £2 million in Regional Selective Assistance to support the development.
"The creation of 450 new jobs, including 225 at its new facility at Clydebank and others at its existing Glasgow contact centre, is great news for Scotland. It shows that with the right support Scotland's contact centre industry will continue to grow.
"Locating this leading-edge centre in Clydebank represents a significant investment by one of Europe's leading contact centres, providing a major jobs boost for the area."
Dave Anderson, chief executive of Scottish Enterprise Dunbartonshire, said: "I am delighted that Response Handling Ltd has chosen to pursue its expansion plans in Clydebank which will see the creation of 225 new jobs.
"SE Dunbartonshire has worked closely with Scottish Development International to bring these jobs to Clydebank and we look forward to working in partnership with RHL to ensure the company's continued success and to maximise the opportunities for the local workforce.
"It is particularly encouraging that, in the light of recent call centre relocations to India, RHL has taken the decision to come to Clydebank. This is testament to the area's high quality transport infrastructure and its skilled, flexible work force.
"I am confident that the RHL project will provide a major boost to the ongoing regeneration of the town and will assist in developing a competitive environment to attract further investment of this kind."
RHL also announced that it expected results for the business for the year ended 31 January 2004 to increase by 45% to £18 million (2003: £12.4 million) with further gains expected in 2004. The company's clients include BSkyB, ScottishPower and the Student Loans Company.