FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 30, 2010

Stacey Johnson
Stacey.Johnson@Governor.Virginia.Gov
(804) 225-4260


Robert Mercer
DIRECTV
(310) 964-4683
Christie Miller
VEDP
(804) 545-5805
Governor McDonnell Announces Virtual Call Center in Southwest Virginia
-DIRECTV/Convergys project will create 100 new jobs from three regions-


RICHMOND - Governor Bob McDonnell today announced that DIRECTV, the world's most popular video service, and its customer service partner, Convergys, plan to establish a virtual call center in Southwest Virginia. The project will create 100 new jobs, recruiting from three regions: the New River Valley, made up of the counties of Floyd, Giles, Montgomery, Pulaski and the City of Radford; Virgina’s aCorridor, which consists of the City of Bristol and the City of Galax and Washington, Smyth, Wythe, Grayson, Carroll and Bland counties; and Virginia’s e-Region, made up Lee, Wise, Scott, Buchanan, Russell, Tazewell and Dickenson counties and the City of Norton.

“A virtual call center that will employ people from three regions of Southwest Virginia is truly an innovative approach,” said Governor McDonnell. “This project is unique in that these 100 new employees will complete online training and telework from home, saving transportation dollars and ensuring that the creation of the call center will have a positive economic impact on a broad area. All three regions worked together to make this virtual call center a reality and Southwest Virginia’s community colleges have played a crucial role in ensuring that DIRECTV found the well-trained and professional workforce critical to the success of their operation.”

DIRECTV delivers state-of-the-art technology, unmatched programming, the most comprehensive sports packages available and industry leading customer service to its more than 18.5 million customers in the U.S. as well as the capacity for more than 200 HD channels in Dolby 5.1 theater–quality sound, access to exclusive sports programming and higher customer satisfaction than the leading cable companies for nine years running.

“We’re excited about the opportunity to create new jobs in Virginia through this unique program with our partner Convergys,” said Ellen Filipiak, senior vice president, Customer Service. “We chose this area of Virginia for its strong work ethic and robust broadband infrastructure that is essential to support a virtual call center. We appreciate the assistance provided by the Virginia Department of Business Assistance, several development agencies within the Commonwealth of Virginia and especially Rep. Rick Boucher, whose direct involvement made this program possible. The congressman has been a long-time proponent of technological innovation that makes leading edge programs like this happen.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership worked with Congressman Rick Boucher to secure the project for Virginia. The New River Valley Economic Development Alliance, Virginia’s aCorridor and the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority assisted with the project. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide job training assistance through the Virginia Jobs Investment Program.

“I am pleased that DIRECTV has chosen to operate a virtual call center in Southwest Virginia, hiring 100 of our region’s residents to serve as remote agents,” said Congressman Rick Boucher. “This announcement marks another major success not only for my Showcasing Southwest Virginia Program in its effort to create new jobs for our region’s residents by attracting top-tier companies to the area, but also for my longstanding work to expand our region’s broadband infrastructure with the goal of creating new technology jobs. Southwest Virginia’s widespread availability of high-speed Internet services, as well as the area’s excellent workforce and outstanding training resources, make the region ideal for DIRECTV’s expansion of its Remote Agent Program.”

Convergys, DIRECTV’s long-time customer service partner, will hire employees for the virtual call center and provide training to handle general customer support calls for DIRECTV. Those who are interested in applying for the virtual call center positions should visit: http://careers.convergysworkathome.com/ for more information.


About the Virginia Economic Development Partnership

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP), a marketing organization, was created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1995 to encourage, stimulate, and support the development and expansion of the economy of the Commonwealth. The Partnership is a state authority, which is governed by a 22-member Board of Directors appointed by the Governor and the Virginia General Assembly. To accomplish its objectives of promoting economic expansion within the Commonwealth, the Partnership focuses its efforts on business recruitment, expansion and international trade. VEDP has offices in Virginia, Belgium, Hong Kong, Mexico and Japan.

VIRGINIA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PARTNERSHIP

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