Infosys BPO to expand in Poland

Infosys Technologies is set to expand its back office operations in Poland in the next two years to offer business process outsourcing (BPO) services to more European and global clients, a senior official of the IT bellwether said.

“We will ramp up our headcount to 1,500 people by 2012 from about 1,000 this year at our Lodz BPO facility in Poland to serve at least 20 clients across verticals in Europe and American markets,” Infosys BPO Poland Sp vice-president Krystian Bestry said.

The  USD4.8-billion global software major runs two large back offices in Poland and the Czech Republic to provide transaction services in diverse areas, including finance, accountancy, procurement, taxation and compliance issues.

“We currently serve 10 active clients, including top European firms in manufacturing and consumer goods sectors. The services are provided in 22 languages,” Bestry said on the margins of the Polish-Indian Investment Forum.

The company has three centres at Lodz and two in Prague where it employs about 450 people for providing non-voice transaction services.

Though investment in infrastructure facilities has been a modest  USD10 million in Poland, 95 per cent of its assets are in the form of people and they account for major operational expenses in the form of compensation and perks.

“We employ different nationalities from Europe and other countries in line with the requirements of our global clients. Majority of our employees are post-graduates in economics, finance and business management,” Bestry said.

Infosys chose Poland to set up the back office operations in view of its central location in Europe and at Lodz, which is also in the heart of the country.

“In addition to its strategic location in Europe, Poland has cost-effective labour force, talent pool, political stability and pro-active government, which offers sops for overseas investment in manufacturing and services sectors,” Infosys BPO Head S Dandapani said.

The Polish subsidiary contributes around 13 per cent of the companys BPO revenues, which was  USD352 million in fiscal 2010.

As an end-to-end outsourcing services provider, Infosys BPO has 12 delivery centres worldwide, including five in India and seven in Asia-Pacific, Europe and South America (Brazil and Mexico), where 18,500 people work on 24x7x365 days.

According to Iwona Chojnowska-Haponik, Polish foreign investment department director, Poland emerged as a top destination in Europe for back office services, thanks to talent pool and demographics, as half the countrys population is under 35 years of age as in India.

“Besides cost advantage and huge labour force, the government offers tax exemptions for local and overseas firms setting up operations in special economic zones and cash grants through European Union funds as seed capital,” Haponik said at an interactive session between Indian and Polish business leaders.

With over two million students and 400,000 graduates per year, Poland emerged as a major hub for back office services. About 360 BPO firms operate in seven cities across the country, providing transactional services in 26 languages.


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