Essar Group unit says buys AOL call centre in India

Essar Group unit says buys AOL call centre in India
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First Published: Mon, Mar 31 2008. 05 59 PM IST
Updated: Mon, Mar 31 2008. 05 59 PM IST
Bangalore: A unit of India’s diversified Essar Group said on Monday it had agreed to acquire the call centre operations of Time Warner Inc’s AOL in India for an undisclosed sum.
Aegis BPO Services, the back-office unit of Essar, will provide customer service and technical support to AOL customers, the Indian firm said in a statement, adding the deal is expected to close by end of next month.
An Essar Group spokesman refused to comment on the deal’s size, but local media citing unnamed sources had earlier reported AOL was close to selling its Bangalore call centre to Aegis BPO for about $100 million in an all-cash deal.
Aegis, which has more than 19,000 staff in call centres in India and the United States, counts American Express Co, AT&T, and Vodafone among its overseas customers, the company said.
It also provides back-office services to firms in India’s telecoms, retail, banking and insurance sectors.
India’s revenue from back-office outsourcing is expected to surge just over four times to $50 billion by 2012 despite a possible recession in the key US market, an industry report said in January.
The sector has logged 35% annual growth over the last five years to hit annual revenues of about $11 billion, with the bulk coming from exports, said the study by lobby group NASSCOM and consulting firm Everest.
The boom in business process outsourcing, or BPO, is built on a large, skilled and comparatively cheaper English-speaking workforce.
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First Published: Mon, Mar 31 2008. 05 59 PM IST
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