Etihad creates jobs in Manchester
Etihad Airways plans to open a contact centre in Manchester, creating jobs for around 160 people.
The new centre, which is expected to be operational in 2012, will operate in addition to Etihad’s existing contact centres in Abu Dhabi, including the newly opened Al Ain contact centre, India and Australia.
Etihad is currently working with Manchester Airports Group to identify a suitable location on the airport campus for the centre.
“Our contact centres handle around 2.5 million calls each year, and we expect more than half of these calls to originate from non-Arabic speaking markets by 2012,” said James Hogan, chief executive officer, Etihad Airways.
“As our network continues to grow, it is increasingly important for us to provide high quality, multilingual assistance for customers who choose to book directly with the airline.”
“We looked closely at a range of potential locations in the United Kingdom and Europe, and undertook extensive research to find the location that offered us a population base with the right mix of languages and skill sets, as well as a high quality of telecommunications infrastructure.
“Manchester offered everything we needed, and had the added attraction of having strong, well-established business links with Abu Dhabi – a relationship we look forward to developing further.”
Hogan paid tribute to the Manchester Investment and Development Agency (MIDAS), which made a compelling case for Manchester as a centre of excellence.
Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: "It is excellent news that Etihad is to base its European call centre here in Manchester, and we warmly welcome the announcement.
"I'm very grateful for the confidence Etihad is showing in Manchester, a demonstration that we really are leaders in this field and can provide a level of service which is second-to-none. It also shows that Manchester continues to be an attractive investment location for global business."
Etihad started operations to Manchester on March 26, 2006 and will; increase its frequency to a double daily service from August 1, 2011.
The airline also opened an Etihad premium lounge at Manchester Airport in December 2010.