THEY started 15 years ago with a small paging company and just six employees in an office above a pub on Cork’s Marlboro St.
And yesterday, Taoiseach Enda Kenny hailed Dan and Linda Kiely, the founders of business outsourcing giant, VoxPro, as a “great inspiration” and a shining example of Ireland’s “tide of resurgence” as they announced 350 new jobs as part of a major expansion of their Mahon campus where 500 people work.
And CEO Mr Kiely predicted their firm, which is now Ireland’s largest exporter of multilingual business process outsourcing, will create an addition 3,000 jobs by 2018 as part of an ambitious global expansion strategy.
A bold prediction, but he and Linda have already delivered.
The jobs announced yesterday, which were signalled last October, were to be created before the end of next year.
But Mr Kiely said they will all now be place before the end of this year — growth fuelled by the winning of two hugely significant contracts in the US.
“The message I want to get out there is that we are hiring now,” he said. “We need to have 350 new graduates on our team by the end of December. So anyone out there, if you have a passion for customer service or a passion for technical support, we want you — send in your CVs.”
The company specialises in providing multilingual tech support and business outsourcing services. Their staff provide their clients with customer contact services, call centre services, 24/7 call answering, and technical support services in 12 different languages. About 70% of their business is done through English — with half of the support services provided by phone, and half online or by email.
VoxPro has 300 clients in the domestic and international markets — ranging from SMEs to multi-national corporations, including leading international blue-chip companies.
Google, Nest, Vodafone, and Travelzoo are among its clients. The company also has local government and government contracts.
The company has three facilities in Cork, one in Dublin, and recently opened an office in San Francisco, which is now winning business in the US and driving jobs back to Cork.
“The secret is continually over-delivering for customers. It’s a simple as that,” Mr Kiely said. “We are working with North American companies. We engage with them when they want to come to Europe and we make it simple for them to do that by providing customer support and technical support. We enable them to ramp up quickly to meet their own customers’ needs.”
Mr Kenny, who was on his second visit to VoxPro to make a jobs announcement, said the company has proven itself as a world-class firm. “They are not going to stop here, they have further ambitions for more jobs in the future,” he said.
The company’s latest expansion is being supported by the Department of Enterprise through Enterprise Ireland.
Cork Chamber CEO, Conor Healy, said the latest jobs boost demonstrates the region’s commitment to providing the environment within which companies can succeed. “This announcement is further evidence of increased positivity in the region as witnessed in our Economic Trends Survey Annual Outlook in Q4 2013, which showed that 78% of businesses project increases in net profit over 2014, an increase of 24% on the same time period in 2012,” he said.
Last year, VoxPro won the High Growth Company award at the it@Cork Leaders Awards.
It won the Cork Chamber/ Vodafone Company of the Year award earlier this year, and went on to win the 2013/2014 Deloitte Best Managed Companies Award. Dan and Linda were named as the MSL Cork Business People of the Year last October, and Linda won Entrepreneur of the Year at the IMAGE Businesswoman of the Year awards 2013.