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Business

BOI approves P143.4 million Cebu contact center project

Catherine Talavera - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — The Board of Investments (BOI) has approved a P143.4 million contact center in Cebu City, which is seen to advance the Philippines’ position as hub for Healthcare Information Management Services (HIMS) in Asia.

In a statement yesterday, the BOI said it approved the Certificate of Registration of a new contact center project by Optum Global Solutions (Philippines) Inc.

“Soon to operate in Cebu City, the project is set to boost the growing HIMS sector in the Philippines as the country is eyeing to be Asia’s hub for Information Technology-Business Process Management (IT-BPM) Services,”the BOI said.

Among the services to be provided by the project include information technology, such as coding services, testing services, maintenance services, and help desk troubleshooting support.

Other services to be provided include call center services, such as inbound and outbound calls; and back-office operations including transaction processing, clinical process services, analytics services, trending and reporting.

“The approval of this project in Cebu City proves that we are persistent in our efforts to enhance the growth of the country’s IT-BPM industry, particularly the HIMS sector,” Trade Undersecretary and BOI managing head Ceferino Rodolfo said.

“We are further advancing the IT-BPM industry, and this is just the beginning of more investments being injected into the country’s economy. We are on track to making more investment opportunities happen in the Philippines,” he said.

For its new site and as a start, the company will adopt a hybrid work arrangement.

The project is expected to generate 350 full-time direct and indirect jobs for Filipinos during the first year of its operation and onwards.

In addition, it is seen to contribute to easing the poverty incidence in Cebu City, which registered at 26.9 percent last year.

“Maximizing the country’s valuable resources, the company picked the Philippines as the site for its new project because of the Filipino workforce that is recognized as competitive with high technical skills and a level of English proficiency,” the BOI said.

Optum Global Solutions (Philippines) Inc. has seven Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) registered projects located in Taguig City, Quezon City, Cebu City, and Muntinlupa City.

The firm is a service provider and is engaged in the provision of HIMS such as IT Services and IT-enabled Services, servicing solely to its affiliate, Optum Technology, LLC (“OT”) – a US subsidiary of UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (“UHG”).

The BOI and the Department of Trade and Industry have been promoting the IT-BPM industry to increase the country’s export, as it has been the biggest job creator with a strong multiplier effect, revenue earner, and driver of domestic demand.

The HIMS industry generated around $3.1 billion worth of revenues for the country in 2021, providing jobs to over 200,000 Filipinos.

The persisting pandemic did not hamper the positive outlook for the country’s HIMS industry, as revenues are projected to grow by 7.3 to 10 percent this year.

The sector is a top industry destination for US investors in the Philippines. For the last 10 years, the Philippine HIMS sector has attracted global investors, increasing the number of industry players to over 400 companies, including small and medium-sized players,” the BOI said.

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