HALIFAX – About 130 staff at an American-owned call centre that set up in Halifax with $28.6 million in government assistance will lose their jobs by the end of the year.
A spokeswoman for Convergys says the company’s call centre in Dartmouth will close on Dec. 31.
Brooke Beiting says a major client of Convergys has decided to shift its work elsewhere, though she declined to say where that will be.
A spokeswoman for Nova Scotia Business Inc., a provincial Crown agency mandated to encourage business development, said in an email that the province provided $28,603,689 to the centre through payroll rebates between 1998 and 2003.
The rebates are provided after the company creates the jobs, and the province has said the investments are often regained through income tax revenues the government receives from the new employees.
The agency also announced payroll rebates to help the company open call centres in Truro and Cornwallis in 2004, but both facilities were closed by 2010.
Cindy Roberts, a spokeswoman for Nova Scotia Business Inc., said Convergys Cornwallis received payroll rebates of $3,765,973, while Convergys Truro received $3,954,562 in rebates.
The company still operates a call centre in New Glasgow, and Roberts said it has received $7,789,200 in payroll rebates.
Beiting says the company still has 300 employees at the New Glasgow location and 250 people are employed in Nova Scotia in the company’s “Work at Home” program.
“They are status quo, business as usual,” she said.
Convergys provides assistance to customers of major telecommunications firms.
The Convergys news comes on the heels of word that embattled tech giant BlackBerry will close its operation in Halifax on Jan. 10, affecting more than 350 employees.
Most of those employees had worked in well-paid positions as technical support representatives.
The province offered $14 million in payroll rebates and $5 million for training and recruitment to BlackBerry.