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Private call centre to operate at facility that previously housed Brown Hill Communications

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by Eulana Weekes

St. Kitts and Nevis (WINN): The premises that once housed Brown Hill Communications have been unoccupied for almost four years, and the island of Nevis has bounced back and is ready to welcome a new, private call centre operation to its shores.

Of the three buildings on the premises, the larger facility has been leased and will open job opportunities for the people of St. Kitts and Nevis explained the Premier of Nevis during his Monthly Press Conference on Tuesday, March 28.

“The larger building- the lease arrangement on that has been concluded. A company called Radius has agreed to take that facility. I am told that they [will] arrive on Nevis on or about the 2nd of April and that interviews and the likes for individuals to work there will commence shortly thereafter.”

“Please await the information, and when the information comes, do not sit back; but make your application if you want to be a part of the workforce there at this new call centre operation.”

Brantley added, “So, that is the larger building there at Brown Hill, and we all know that we had Brown Hill Communications operating there for many years and then, one Friday afternoon, they abruptly ended their relationship with Nevis. We never actually understood why or why so suddenly, but that is the nature of things.”

Brown Hill Communications closed its doors in the last quarter of 2019. Premier Brantley broke the news to the public during an address to the nation on August 12, 2019, and reported the reason for the closure.

“The management of the Brown Hill Communications advised that its main client, BellCanada, had changed its business model. A number of the services previously provided by Brown Hill Communications for Bell Canada have been automated. The result is that the services of Brown Hill Communications will no longer be utilised by Bell Canada, and as a result, Brown Hill Communications will close its operations in Nevis effective September 3rd, 2019.”

Also included in the August 2019 statement, the Premier said the notice period to the administration about the closure of Brown Hill Communications was very short and that neither party could do anything to prevent it. However, he informed the public that the NIA had already commenced discussions with other possible operators and that arrangements were made for the NIA to secure some of the assets at the call centre.

“Nevertheless, I have already commenced discussions with other possible operators with a view to having a replacement operator at that facility in the very near future. Any such new operator would be asked to utilise the skills of the already well-trained workforce.”

“My administration has also secured a commitment from the management of Brown Hill Communication that all the computers and telecommunication infrastructure at the centre will remain intact and handed over to the administration. This is significant because it will enable the administration to immediately work to identify a replacement call centre operator or a business entity of a similar nature for the Brown Hill facility.”

During his Tuesday, March 28, 2023, Press Conference, the Premier confirmed that negotiations were ongoing but delayed due to the pandemic.

“We have been trying since then to attract another operator, and while we had good success in the past in terms of people committing, we were badly delayed by COVID, and so, here we are now on the other side of the COVID [-19] Pandemic, we hope, looking at it fading in the rearview mirror; we have an operator who is saying to us that they will start out potentially with about 50 workers, but their anticipation is to get up to about 325. So, that is the objective.”

In preparation for the handing over of the facility, the Government took the initiative to give the call centre a facelift. The new call centre operation is expected to attract a large workforce, much larger than Brown Hill Communications, which had about 138 employees at its closure. The official signing agreement for the new call centre was done on Monday, April 03, 2023.

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