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Thousands of jobs to be axed at NTL
[May 08, 2006]

Thousands of jobs to be axed at NTL

(The Birmingham Post Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)NTL appears set to announce thousands of job cuts following its merger with cable rival Telewest.

Reports suggested 4,000 jobs, perhaps even as many as 6,000, could be lost in the UK.

It was claimed head office roles will be cut and call centre jobs transferred overseas in a shake-up affecting one in four staff.

Details are expected when NTL, whose customer base includes many in the Tam-worth and Lichfield areas, publishes its first-quarter results tomorrow.

However, there will be little impact on Virgin Mobile which is being run as a separate business following the pounds 962 million purchase of the company last month.

It was forecast NTL could close the Woking head office of Telewest with some of the staff moved to its own base at Hook in Hampshire.

It is also understood that most of the combined group's call centres will be outsourced, with some of the jobs going to offshore centres in India.

A spokeswoman for NTL declined to respond, saying the company did not comment on rumour or speculation.

NTL has radically reshaped itself since emerging from bankruptcy protection in 2003, beginning with a major financial overhaul to generate new capital and reduce interest repayment charges.

It organised a rights issue to raise pounds 824.3 million and trimmed its workforce, with 1,500 call centre staff losing their jobs in cuts announced two years ago.

NTL and Telewest employ around 17,000 workers in the UK.

It is thought that the full integration of NTL and Telewest will take up to 18 months so some of the losses will not be immediate.

NTL merged with Telewest in March to create the largest provider of residential broadband services in the UK.

It has indicated that savings will total pounds 250 million over the next three years.

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