ISON eyes 25,000 jobs, $400m in Nigeria
By Kokumo Goodie, Lagos, Nigeria
ISON Group has projected the creation of 25,000 new jobs and $400 million revenue within space of one or two years in Nigeria as it moves to deepen its foothold in the country, making it the hub of its African operation.
Global CEO, Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), Mr. Pravin Kumar, who spoke with Biztechafrica.com in Lagos on the sideline of a press conference said as part of the firm’s strategy to expand its foothold in the country, it has concluded plans to establish four more state-of-the-art call centres in Nigeria.
“Nigeria has a huge potential for growth and development, especially with the availability of strong, vibrant and talented workforce. One of our visions for Nigeria is to up skill and develop local human talent thus enabling the country become an Offshore Call Center hub which will add significant value to our customers, internally and externally. It should not be difficult to create 25,000 jobs in one to two years in this space and generate export revenue of around $400 million in same. It can then grow from there,” Kumar said.
ISON is a customer experience management provider in Africa, Middle East and Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) region, offering systems integration, managed services, BPO and strategic outsourcing solutions using end-to-end IT services.
ISON BPO provides call centre outsourcing services has over 7,000 employees across 12 countries, in which 4,500 employees are in 10 countries in sub-Saharan Africa. ISON BPO is the largest BPO company in sub-Saharan Africa. Some of the countries ISON BPO operates in include Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Uganda. In 2015, the company plans to add nine more centers with an additional 5,000 employees in this region.
Speaking on the occasion, founder and chair, ISON Group, Mr. Ramesh Awtaney, who reacted to questions about BPO taking jobs instead of creating jobs, said the firm creates jobs for more Nigerians, adding that the firm is a pan-Nigeria firm.
He said: “Unlike most BPO and tech service companies which take work and jobs to IP (Internet Protocol), we have pioneered reversing the trend by taking the IP to the work without compromising on world-class quality. As part of our core strategy, we have invested in developing local systems and empowering local talent to foster a better future for the African continent. We do not outsource local work outside of Africa.”
He said since its establishment in Nigeria, ISON has employed 1,300 people, of which 99 per cent are Nigerians. Its key clients in Nigeria include Airtel and AIICO.
Kumar said the ISON Technologies is equally a pan African outsourcing player, providing end to end IT services and solutions across Africa, Dubai and the Middle East. ISON Innovation and Investments (I3) focuses on driving consumer internet businesses in Africa.
“Through this initiative, we embark on a new journey to help entrepreneurs from the internet fraternity. Collectively, ISON Group has on ground presence in 25 African countries as well as the Middle East, and ASEAN regions.
“The ISON Group offers BPO services through ISON BPO. The robust BPO services infrastructure is built on global delivery framework to deliver voice, non-voice and other knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) services through local presence and on-shore/remote support, leading to superior customer experience, highly satisfied customers and growth in business. The services are offered to all business sectors including telecoms, retail, aviation, government, oil and gas, banking and financial services.
“The company has committed to setting up four state-of-the-art facilities in Ibadan, Abeokuta, Ilorin, and Kano. We plan to employ about 4,000 employees in these call centers with an additional investment of $20 million this year. ISON BPO has excellent Call Centre facilities around the world including one in Ibadan and plans to recreate the same standards everywhere in Nigeria,” he said.