THE company that runs a swathe of council services in Southampton is to recruit up to 100 staff in the city.

business outsourcing giant Capita is creating 50 new call centre jobs at its offices in Guildhall Square with more openings to follow later this year.

Capita bosses said it was part of a growth strategy for Southampton where it has a lucrative contract with the city council.

Under a £290m, ten-year contract signed in 2007, the firm runs council departments such as customer services, IT, human resources, property, tax and benefits departments in return for guaranteed savings of £33m. It also provides consultancy services to the council.

Capita regional director Tony Lubman said: “Capita is pleased to announce an immediate 50 new jobs based at our Guildhall Square office in Southampton. These will be team leaders and call agents for a new contact centre. “The overall strategy in Southampton is one of growth – it is an excellent place for Capita to grow its Business. We are able to recruit people with the skills we need to provide a wide range of support services.”

Capita, whose national operations range from collecting the BBC licence fee to recruiting for the British Army, increased revenues by seven per cent to £2.93 billion last year, making a £303m profit.Council leader Rosyton Smith welcomed the news.

“It demonstrates how big companies want to grow their business in Southampton because they can see the benefits of being located here.”