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Ayala outsourcing unit acquires UK’s top BPO firm

MANILA, Philippines - The outsourcing unit of Ayala Corp. (AC) has acquired one of the top business process outsourcing (BPO) firms in the United Kingdom.

This development will allow better market penetration in the UK while adding almost $90 million in annual BPO revenues, the company said in a statement.

LiveIt Investments Ltd., the BPO investment arm of AC, said unit Stream Global Services Inc. has completed the acquisition of all outstanding shares of UK-based LBM Holdings Ltd.

“LBM will enable Stream to better penetrate the UK, the world’s second largest English language market, as well as strengthen its ability to help customers grow their sales through LBM’s revenue generation service offerings,” LiveIt said.

Stream is a customer relationship management BPO firm with more than 39,000 employees supporting 35 languages across 56 service centers in 23 countries.

LBM, for its part, is a demand-and-lead generation solutions provider composed of 2,500 employees across six locations in the UK and generates approximately 60 million pounds in annual revenues.

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Clients of UK-based BPO firm are in the telecommunications, financial services, utilities, automotive and retail industries.

“LBM has proven experience in creating highly precise target lists of people who will be more inclined to buy products and services, which will further enhance our StreamSELLER offering,” said Stream chairman and CEO Kathy Marinello.

StreamSELLER focuses on everything involved with the sales process, from recruiting, hiring and training of employees to the use of proven sales behaviors that allows greater predictability.

Marinello said LBM’s workforce and expertise, combined with Stream’s financial strength, global presence and offerings “will establish a broader portfolio of high-value service offerings for our clients.”

Last year, Stream posted $860 million in revenues while its adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) jumped 14 percent to $101 million.

In the fourth quarter alone, revenues rose seven percent to $236 million while adjusted EBITDA gained 10 percent to $34 million.

Stream claims to have pioneered the Philippine call center industry when it took the first calls from the US market in mid-2000.

In the past three years, Stream has also grown its workforce to more than 14,000 while opening three new sites in Pasay, Makati and Cebu.

Aside from BPO, parent firm AC is also into property (Ayala Land Inc.), utilities (Manila Water Co. Inc.) telecommunications (Globe Telecom Inc., banking (Bank of the Philippine Islands) and power and infrastructure projects in the Philippines and in Southeast Asia.

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