May 30 (Reuters) - Britain’s Capita Plc plans to close two major O2 call centres and cut thousands of jobs after winning a big contract last week to manage the mobile phone operator’s customer services, a newspaper reported.
Capita, an outsourcing firm, won one of its biggest contracts ever with the 10-year $1.8 billion deal for Telefonica’s unit.
The previously undisclosed details of the deal have enraged members of the Communication Workers Union, which is threatening strike action, the Telegraph said.
The company will close facilities in Bury, Greater Manchester and in Glasgow when it ends leases in 2015 and also slash jobs at call centres in Dearne Valley and Leeds, the Telegraph said citing documents seen by the paper.
Capita plans to eventually retain only around 1,370 of the 3,700 O2 staff due to be transferred at the start of the deal in July. To make up for that loss of headcount, it will expand a Capita call centre in Cape Town and increase customer support via web chats that would be managed from India.
The paper quoted an O2 spokeswoman as saying the plan was one scenario.
“It’s all down to customer demand. We could put more people in those sites. Capita are a big, growing company and they may want to take more people on,” it quoted the spokeswoman as saying.
It also quoted a Capita spokeswoman as declining to comment on the contents of the documents but adding the company would seek to redeploy staff made redundant.
O2 and Capita could not be reached by Reuters for comment outside regular business hours.