HP Outsources Teleservices in Spain, Portugal to Sitel

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Hewlett Packard Corp., Palo Alto, CA, outsourced its pre-sale and post-sale customer services in Spain and Portugal to Sitel Iberica Teleservices, Madrid, the Spanish subsidiary of Sitel Corp., Omaha, NE. The contract, which was made public on Sept. 23 also includes technical support and warranty administration for the computer company's Spanish and Portuguese customers.

"Our Spanish unit has worked with HP before and are familiar with its systems," said Jim Jacobson, investor relations manager for Sitel. He would not comment on the length of the contract or any other details.

Calls for Hewlett Packard will be handled by Sitel's existing call center in San Fernando de Henares, Spain. The call center will have 150 to 200 workstations dedicated to the Hewlett Packard contract.

In a prepared statement, Hewlett Packard officials said that to remain competitive, outsourcing this part of its teleservices division will save the company money in training and in maintaining its own call center for these purposes.

Also last month, Sitel signed a three-year contract to provide similar services to the Colombia division of Compaq Computer Corp., Houston. The contract is different from the Hewlett Packard contract in that Sitel personnel will staff Compaq's customer relationship management center in Bogota. The contract also is the third one that Sitel has signed with Compaq within the last year. The other two are in Brazil and Canada.

"It may open up to a longer term of service but we are not thinking about that," Jacobson said. "At this point we are still very early in the contracts, we are not thinking about three years down the road, we are thinking about what has to be done today for our client."

Compaq officials in Colombia said that the company's strategic direction demands for an accelerated process of acquiring knowledge about customers and establishing a relationship with them.

Sitel said that its expansion of its services with Compaq means that the clients will be able to provide better products and services for their customers abroad.

"The track record we have shown is that we are doing well for Compaq and expect the same from Hewlett Packard," Jacobson said. "This is similar to what we are doing with GM where they contracted three 500-seat call centers in Florida and Texas and are using our employees to staff them.

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