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News : Leeds' Workforce Key to Sanef Investment
July 7, 2014 -- French motorway operator Sanef has said it chose to base a customer contact centre in Leeds because of the city's skilled workforce. The company is creating 300 jobs, including ten apprenticeship posts.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg announced the inward investment during the keynote event of the Grand Départ International Business Festival, arranged in association with Leeds and Partners and UKTI.
Sanef's 28,000 sq ft centre at St John's Centre in Leeds will manage a new payment arrangement being introduced from October 2014, which is designed to improve journeys and reduce congestion at the Dartford Crossing.
Instead of stopping at payment booths it will give drivers more flexibility about how and when they pay the charge.
Sanef Operations chief executive Charles Hewson said: "Leeds has been chosen due to its significant experience in contact centre operations along with its highly skilled and educated work force and I truly believe this is the start of a long term and mutually beneficial relationship."
Councillor Wakefield, leader of Leeds City Council, added: "Job creation is crucial for sustainable economic growth and we have high aspirations in this area, particularly when getting our young people off to a flying start."
Leeds and Partners said the Sanef investment meant more than 1,000 jobs had been created through inward investment over the past 18 months.
Lurene Joseph, chief executive of the inward investment agency, said: "Skilled jobs are the oxygen that fuels the engine of economic growth and to bring about acceleration in the resource pipeline, we have our sights firmly focused on the medium to long-term as we implement an ambitious development programme for the Leeds city region that will take a series of unique, clearly differentiated propositions to international markets."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Tuesday, July 8, 2014