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News : Delaware Offers Grant to Springleaf for 210 Call Center Jobs
Jan 2, 2014 -- The growth potential of Springleaf Financial Services, a national nontraditional lender, is strong enough for Delaware to court the Indiana-based company with a grant offer tied to creating more than 200 call center jobs.
As enticing as it might seem, though, the deal is not done.
The publicly traded firm that took root in 1920 in Evansville, Ind., also is considering the possibility of creating the 210 new call center positions near its headquarters, or in Houston, Texas, according to Bernice Whaley, deputy director for the Delaware Economic Development Office.
Springleaf Financial – a provider of personal, home improvement, bill consolidation and other loan products to customers in 26 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands – first stepped into Delaware in July with a 10-member team to test the market. The small crew is based in office space on U.S. 202 in Fairfax.
"They have been very successful in North Wilmington ... and are trying to service the very visible market we have in this area from Boston to D.C. and can do it much better if they have a presence here," Whaley said. "They learned the workforce is exactly what they thought it would be."
Since then, the firm has agreed to create 25 high-wage positions for financial analysts and computer engineers under a performance grant from the Delaware Strategic Fund. Performance grants operate under a system where businesses must reach specific job creation milestones in order to draw upon the funds.
"I know they are going to make the decision of where to locate (call center jobs) in 2014," Whaley said. "We’re hoping they make that decision here.
"One of the reasons they came here to start with is because we have the skilled workforce they are looking for."
The lender was approved for the Strategic Fund to create the call center positions and a Delaware Strategic Fund Capital Expenditure grant to help offset potential capital expenses for office space.
The grant package is for the creation of 235 new jobs, in addition to the 10 positions already created for the landing team, and the smaller award for capital improvements.
In its evaluation of Delaware, Springleaf is considering New Castle as a potential location for the new jobs, Whaley said.
Springleaf Financial could not be reached for comment Thursday.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Springleaf is a leading consumer finance company providing loan products to customers through its nationwide branch network and online presence. Springleaf has a nearly 100-year track record of high quality origination, underwriting and servicing of personal loans, primarily to nonprime consumers. Springleaf operates one of the largest consumer finance branch networks in the United States, serving its customers through nearly 830 branches in 26 states.
Published: Tuesday, January 7, 2014