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Jarrow Jobs Call–Up

A new hi-tech call centre is open for business in South Tyneside bringing with it 100 new jobs and plans for many more.

New company Amicus Outsourcing Limited has invested more than £1 million in the venture based in the former Co-op office in St Bede's Chamber, Jarrow.

The call centre has got off to a successful start after winning a large contract with a yet to be announced major utility company to deal in gas and electricity.

Amicus have installed the latest computer software and renovated the listed St Bede's building to enable it to handle thousands of calls for utility companies, retailers and financial service operators.

The new company has the backing of South Tyneside Council which came in with a large start-up grant.

To coincide with opening bosses at Amicus have announced plans to grow turnover at its Jarrow base to £50 million in the next three to five years and grow the workforce to up to 500.

Charles Burns, operations director with Amicus, said: "While initially we will be carrying out sales orientated work the plan is to quickly move into electronic retailing. This will involve handling orders by phone or over the internet and fulfilling the order via a warehousing facility which we plan to open when the business is established.

"Ideally, we would hope to open a warehouse in South Tyneside creating more jobs for local people and long term we hope to explore home working opportunities."

Amicus were assisted in their plan to open at Jarrow by South Tyneside's Economic Development Team which sourced a start-up grant and put together tailored call centre training packages backed by its Flexible Training Fund.

Councillor Eddie McAtominey, South Tyneside Council's Lead Member for Corporate Development, said: "We are extremely pleased to see the start of a new large scale business in Jarrow that promises to create quality, well paid jobs and to see a fine local building being put to excellent use. A great deal of work has been done behind the scenes to get this off the ground and I applaud the all-round effort which I'm sure will pay off."

Councillor McAtominey and Councillor Paul Waggott, Leader of the Council, were given a preview of the new facility in advance of opening. Councillor Waggott said: "South Tyneside has been waiting for an opportunity like this to come along which will bring much-needed jobs to the area."

Anyone interested in job opportunities can find out more by contacting the local JobCentre Plus office in Jarrow on 0191 451 4226.

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