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Pacnet targets RP outsourcing firms

By Lawrence Casiraya
First Posted 12:36:00 03/24/2009
MANILA, Philippines – Pacnet is targeting business process outsourcing (BPO) industries, hinting at the possibly acquiring local telecommunications companies to boost its operations in country.

Pacnet CEO Bill Barney said the Philippine BPO industry would flourish and along with it demand for bandwidth to the country would increase.

"We believe enterprises in the region will continue to outsource services such as finance and accounting, HR and customer contact services to service providers in the Philippines, or moving their in-house operations here," Barney said in a press briefing.

Pacnet’s EAC-C2C undersea cable system has dual landing points in the country, located in Batangas and Cavite.

The Hong Kong-based firm provides capacity to local telecom firms.

Barney also hinted at "potentially acquiring distressed telecom infra that have a significant dependency on transit."

Local carrier Globe Telecom earlier announced a $90-million investment in a regional cable system, which poses a direct threat to Pacnet.

But Barney said Pacnet continues to collaborate with local carriers in addressing bandwidth requirements for Philippine-bases clients.

In terms of telecom infrastructure, he said this accounts for two-third of the cost of running a contact center in India, compared to about one-third in the Philippines.

"Singapore is the cheapest place to operate a call center right now, but of course, the worker supply there is scarce and the quality of service is far superior if you do it here in the Philippines," Barney said.

Industry group Business Processing Association of the Philippines is projecting workforce to more than double from last year to at least 900,000 by 2010.

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