British firm expands in India - but explains move

Wednesday, 26 November 2003, 08:00 Hrs
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LONDON: Now it seems even those companies whose expansion to India does not involve jobs losses in Britain need to defend their actions publicly.

RM Group, a British education software and services specialist, is at pains to explain that its decision to set up a development operation in India does not mean it is about to cut its British workforce.

The group's Education Solutions India arm now employs 50 people and it said the figure would rise to as high as 150 by the end of the company's next financial year.

But while large British firms have been exporting call centre jobs en mass to cut overheads, the plan at RM is to keep a stable domestic headcount.

"We have said to our own employees we won't be using this India opportunity to jeopardise their jobs," said chief executive Tim Pearson.

"Where we are looking for new recruits, we will be doing it more aggressively in India than in the U.K."

Pearson said a similar expansion wouldn't happen at home as the cost would be prohibitive.

"We wouldn't be looking to recruit that number of heads if we were doing it in the U.K.," he admitted defensively.

"One of the exciting things is it does allow you to pursue a business model that just wouldn't be possible on a U.K. wage base."

Reports say the group will increase its profit to 9.85 million pounds next year.

With the company generating cash and net funds up 5.7 million pounds at the year end to 38.4 million pounds, it leaves RM with a tidy war chest to go in for acquisitions.

Source: IANS
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