News : Utilita Closes Newcastle Call Centre but Toto Energy Opens in its Place
Newcastle, England, March, 2019 -- A start-up energy firm has created 100 jobs after opening a call centre in Newcastle.
Energy supplier Toto Energy is opening the call centre in Newburn after a similar operation by Utilita Energy closed with the loss of 40 jobs.
Toto’s team will be led by sales and marketing director Neil Wilson, who previously ran a call centre in the same building operated by First Contact NE. That company ran into financial difficulties and was wound up in 2018, sparking Utilita to take over the operations and save jobs.
But Utilita said the company’s problems "ran deeper than anticipated", prompting the closure.
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Olivia Ryder, marketing executive at Brighton-based Toto Energy, said: "We want to expand quickly. We are growing the sales force and it is something that is being pushed.
"We will need compliance and administration roles. Everything will be done up here."
Brighton-based Toto Energy is one of a number of new energy companies that have sprung up in recent years.
Meanwhile Utilita, which was unveiled as the sponsor of Newcastle Arena in July, has pledged to make efforts to return to the North East with a new telesales operation.
The firm said: "We have reluctantly made the decision to close our telesales operation at Gateway House. Around 40 people will be affected, with some reallocated.
"Utilita took over a seriously failing business last April - ensuring 120 First Contact staff were paid, when otherwise they would not have been – and have worked tirelessly to try and turn it around.
"But it is clear the problems ran deeper than we anticipated and, coupled with a particularly demanding environment for the energy sector, it is not viable at this moment – however, we’re not ruling out returning at a later date.
"We remain committed to the North East. Utilita Services Ltd, in 5th Avenue Plaza, Team Valley, Gateshead, is a key part of our business, we are proud official partner of Sunderland AFC and we are the official sponsor of the Newcastle Utilita Arena."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Tuesday, April 2, 2019