Belfast Telegraph

Ageas announces plan to shut down Belfast call centre, axing 200 jobs

Staff work for insurance providers RIAS and Castle Cover at Springvale Business Park

Two hundred call centre jobs look set to be axed in Belfast.

Ageas Retail - the parent company of insurance providers RIAS and Castle Cover -  has announced it plans to shut down its west Belfast operation in Springvale Business Park.

The company has entered a 90-day consultation period with its 200 employees who provide outbound calling services to potential customers.

A company statement said: "Over the last two years there has been a significant drop in sales from this activity reflecting both the changing behavior of consumers, who are becoming less responsive to outbound calls and declining performance from consumer databases.

"This has led to the difficult situation where the Belfast site has become increasingly uneconomical.

"There will now be a consultation period with employees until June where the proposal and any viable alternatives will be fully explored.

"If suitable solutions cannot be found, Ageas Retail will do all it can to help employees find alternative employment including the provision of additional outplacement and career services support."

The outcome of the consultation will be confirmed by June.

Employee numbers grew from 15 when the firm first set up here in 2000, initially supported with funding and grants from Invest Northern Ireland.

The announcement is another potential blow for Springvale Business Park. Andor parent company Oxford Instruments last month said it could make up to 20 people redundant at the digital camera maker's premises there.

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