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ONE OF the biggest businesses to relocate to the North East in a decade is ramping up recruitment as it emerges from the COVID-19 crisis stronger.

Verisure, which announced in February that it would be opening a North Tyneside Centre of Excellence that will create more than 1,000 new jobs over the next ten years, is now actively adding to its team, with 15 live vacancies for customer service roles that will support the business’ UK client base. The company’s move to the region was supported by Invest North East England, with North Tyneside Council’s business investment team managing to convince Verisure that North Tyneside was the best location for their new UK base.

The company, one of the largest alarm system providers to residential and small business customers in Europe and Latin America, has opened a state-of-the-art facility in the Neon Building, on North Tyneside’s Quorum Park. The recruitment drive marks the start of what is likely to be a prolonged period of job-creation, as the company looks to bolster its team which has already started to move into its stunning new office space following the UK lockdown.

The new roles will be welcome news for local people, some of whom may be affected by job losses owed to the COVID-19 crisis.

Kevin Croft, director of site operations at Verisure, said: “We are delighted to start what will be an ongoing drive to add to our team over the coming weeks. We have been hugely impressed by the calibre of talent we’ve seen in North Tyneside so far, and we’re looking forward to seeing what more the area has to offer, as we continue to grow our headcount in the Neon Building.

“There were a number of things that impressed us about the area, but one of the key assets are the fantastic, friendly people. We sell systems that are all about making people feel safe, so knowing we have such a warm, welcoming team to support our customers was always important to us.

“We’re looking forward to creating opportunities for local people, and investing in them, enabling them to grow a rewarding career with us at Verisure.”

The company expects to end its first year on Tyneside with a team of 100 operating out of the Neon Building, and expects to add 100 people each year to its headcount, until 2030 With more than 18,000 colleagues globally, the business has been undeterred by the global pandemic.

“We are an ambitious business, and we have significant plans for growth globally,” said Mr Croft, who was one of the key decision makers in the firm’s move to Tyneside.

“It’s an exciting time, as we gear up operations here and look to a bright future. Despite the coronavirus pandemic, we’re confident about the future.”

The business chose North Tyneside as its base after a competitive country-wide search. The move will see it gradually growing into the office, with an initial 34,000sq ft of space occupied by its team. Verisure has an 11-year lease on the premises.

Verisure was assisted by Invest North Tyneside, the business investment arm of North Tyneside Council, throughout its search as it explored options nationwide for its new UK base. The company started its search for a new base in November 2018 and visited the region in January 2019 – one of 16 locations across the UK in the frame. By March, the business had narrowed down its search to four regions, with eight properties in the North East being considered. By summer, Verisure was once again visiting the region and was welcomed by North Tyneside’s Mayor, Deputy Mayor, Chief executive and head of the service, with detailed discussions taking place about the opportunities in the area.

Throughout the process Invest, North Tyneside provided extensive demographic information about the region to assist the company in building a business case. It also hosted a range of additional visits in the autumn, including opportunities for existing Verisure staff and their families to visit the area and find out more about North Tyneside as a place to live and work. After being impressed by the location, the firm was ready to proceed and detailed discussions took place throughout January before it signed on the dotted line to move into the Neon Building.

Councillor Bruce Pickard, Deputy Mayor of North Tyneside and cabinet member for business, said: “We’re thrilled to see Verisure getting off to such a strong start on Tyneside.

“It’s exactly the type of business we want to see in the area – ambitious and people-focused – and we know that the North East’s skilled workforce will repay the Verisure’s commitment to the area, by driving the company to further growth.”

Verisure was provided with investment from the North of Tyne Combined Authority, which helped secure its move to North Tyneside.

North of Tyne Mayor Jamie Driscoll said: "This is brilliant news. Verisure is bringing in 1000 jobs over the next ten years.

"That's 100 this year, they are recruiting now.  These are not just jobs; Verisure is offering careers. They want the North of Tyne to be a long-term centre of excellence for their global company."

Michael Cantwell from RMT, which assisted the business with its move to the North East, said: “We are delighted to have assisted Verisure raise funding towards its expansion into the North East.

“The incentive that North Tyneside Council’s Inward Investment Fund facilitates makes it an especially attractive place for business and we’re very pleased to have played our part in bringing Verisure to the area.”

Kate Buckle
Article by Kate Buckle
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