KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — Prime Minister, Andrew Holness, today, broke ground for a technology park that will have the largest business process outsourcing (BPO) facility in the English-speaking Caribbean, providing 3,300 call-centre seats and more than 5,000 permanent jobs.
The investment is worth more than US$30 million and will result in the development of an integrated technology park, dubbed ’58HWT’, in Kingston.
The facility is being developed by Stanley Motta Limited, which is owned by the Musson Group, and will consist of 230,000 square feet of office space, rented predominantly to BPO operators. It is located at 58 Half -Way Tree Road in the city.
It will also have associated services such as day care; automated teller machine (ATM) and financial services, healthcare, such as dental and medical; and food and beverage.
In his address, the prime minister said the development signals inclusive growth and job creation for Jamaica.
He argued that the project shows the confidence that Musson has in the country’s productivity and capacity, and symbolises the convergence of public- and private-sector aspirations.
“58HWT will be developed into the largest tech park in the Caribbean. This is being done by renovating old warehouses and building new space. The space is predominantly rented to BPO facilities and their support services,” Holness said.
He emphasised that in order to continue nurturing Jamaica’s sustained growth in outsourcing services, the country must pay attention to the critical factors that impact its potential.
“The unavailability of purpose-built facilities in which to undertake the advanced activities associated with BPO operations and evolving knowledge-processing operations is one of the main constraints on Jamaica’s fulfillment of its true potential in these areas,” the prime minister said.
He said that in the fast-growing outsourcing industry, service providers continually seek to grow their client base, and oftentimes when they successfully close deals to increase business volumes, those deals require them to add significant capacity within months.
“If Jamaica is going to continue to be viewed by companies as an ideal place to grow their operations, we must invest in building facilities that meet these companies’ requirements, before they win new accounts. This is exactly what the Musson Group has done with 58HWT Tech Park, taking a calculated risk to prepare to meet the continuing growth in the sector,” Holness noted.
Meanwhile, Chairman of the Musson Group, Paul Scott, said the tech park investment is part of a series of developments being undertaken by the group.
“58HWT is going to be a very impactful development. There is going to be (about) 2,500 seats. Two shifts are 5,000 jobs… three shifts, 7,500 jobs. That is 7,500 consumers, and that is how we have to build an economy; that is where growth is going to come from,” he said.
The project is being undertaken in phases, and the full project is expected to be completed in June 2018.
The BPO tenants will include Alorica Jamaica, which has already taken 50,000 square feet and is expected to take on more space in the complex.