Virgin Media warns of 900 job losses in shake-up

Virgin Media employs about 750 people in Bellshill. Picture: Nick Ansell/PA Wire

Virgin Media employs about 750 people in Bellshill. Picture: Nick Ansell/PA Wire

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About 900 UK jobs are under threat at telecoms giant Virgin Media after it announced plans for a group-wide overhaul.

The broadband and mobile provider, which employs about 750 people at a “flagship” call centre in Bellshill, warned the redundancies were likely over the next two years as part of a structural shake-up.

Chief executive Tom Mockridge said: “The proposed reorganisation will give us an even sharper focus on the customer, network expansion and business growth.”

Virgin Media said customer services will be reviewed as part of its overhaul, but it could not give a breakdown of job losses by department or location as staff consultations were ongoing.

READ MORE: Virgin Media looks to outpace rivals with £3bn plan

Mockridge insisted the group was still “expanding, investing and growing”.

It aims to increase its workforce of directly employed and outsourced staff from 23,000 last year to 25,000 in 2016, and 26,000 in 2017.

But some of the new roles will be outsourced to firms in the UK, across Europe and worldwide.

A Virgin Media spokesman said the overhaul is about “making sure we’ve got the right people in the right areas”. He added: “It’s not a cost-cutting exercise, it’s about tightening up the ship.”

Virgin Media has 13,600 staff in the UK and 6,250 employees from outsourced partners in the UK.

The firm was bought by cable tycoon John Malone’s Liberty Global in 2013 for $23.3 billion (£16.3bn), creating Europe’s largest broadband business. The combined group has 27 million customers across 14 countries, with about five million in the UK.

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