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AT&T Wireless Announces 300 New Jobs For Russell County
-Governor Warner praises $5.4 million investment in Southwest Virginia-
RICHMOND - Governor Mark R. Warner today announced that AT&T Wireless will locate an inbound calling center in Russell County. Through a $5.4 million investment, AT&T Wireless will hire more than 300 employees to handle billing, coverage, technical and general support questions for its customers. The project was originally announced in July 2001 by TeleCorp PCS, Inc. AT&T Wireless, which subsequently acquired TeleCorp PCS, Inc., will move forward with the project, increasing the original investment by $850,000. The new facility will be located in the Lebanon Shell Building in the Cumberland Plateau Regional Industrial Park. Virginia successfully competed with other states for the investment.
“I am pleased to confirm these new jobs for Russell County,” said Governor Warner. “The Commonwealth aggressively fought to bring this investment to the state. I know how important new jobs are to Southwest Virginia, and I applaud AT&T Wireless for keeping this commitment.”
Headquartered in Redmond, Washington, AT&T Wireless (NYSE: AWE) is the largest independently traded wireless carrier in the United States and operates one of the largest digital wireless networks in North America. With more than 19.5 million subscribers, and full-year 2001 revenues exceeding $13.6 billion, AT&T Wireless is committed to being among the first to deliver the next generation of wireless products and services. Today, the company offers customers high-quality mobile wireless communications services, voice or data, to businesses or consumers, in the U.S. and internationally.
The new Russell County call center will employ a minimum of 300 people, with the possibility of more new jobs over the next two years. Employees at the call center will help serve AT&T Wireless customers who have general questions about their service or who need assistance with their wireless service invoices. The company anticipates interviewing potential employees early next year and opening the call center for business before mid-year in 2003.
“Southwest Virginia offers us a diligent and stable workforce, local expertise in the customer care industry, and committed and capable partners in local government,” said Mohan Gyani, AT&T Wireless president of Mobility Services. “By locating our new call center in Russell County, we can preserve our high quality of customer service while expanding our operations in a cost-effective manner.”
Governor Warner approved a $450,000 grant from the Governor’s Opportunity Fund (GOF) to assist Russell County with the project. The county also obtained $250,000 in Tobacco Region Opportunity Funds to assist with the expansion. U.S. Congressman Rick Boucher was instrumental in securing this project for Virginia. The Virginia Economic Development Partnership, the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority and Russell County assisted AT&T Wireless with its decision. The Virginia Department of Transportation will assist with road access funding. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide workforce training services.
“I am very pleased that AT&T Wireless accepted the invitation to locate a new customer service call center in Russell County,” said Congressman Rick Boucher. “Governor Warner, the Virginia Economic Development Partnership and a strong team of state, regional and local partners have provided outstanding assistance throughout this project. These AT&T Wireless jobs will enrich Russell County's economy and greatly improve the quality of life for hundreds of our region’s residents.”