Domestic call center revenues to exceed Rs. 8500 crore: Dataquest survey

DQC Bureau
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DQC News Bureau


In a first of its kind study of the domestic call center industry conducted

by Dataquest, the magazine estimates the domestic call center revenues will grow

at 65 percent in the current fiscal to touch Rs. 8,500 crore.

The survey, based on a detailed study of the captive as well as third party

call centers, says the growth in the domestic call center industry will

accelerate to 65 percent, up from 42 percent recorded in the previous year.

(This growth rate is about twice the growth rate recorded by the Rs. 37,800

crore BPO export sector in 2006-07.)

The industry posted revenues of Rs. 5,200 crore in 2006-07 with the captive

call centers (centers operated to service company's own clients) contributing

nearly 70 percent at Rs. 3,598 crore. The outsourced call center industry (those

servicing the needs of third party clients) posted revenues of Rs. 1,602 crore.

Of this, the organized players (classified as those employing more than 200

people) contributed to Rs. 1,097 crore while the revenue from the unorganized

players added to about Rs. 505 crore.


The domestic call center industry employed over 280,000 agents at the end of

December 2007 as per the Dataquest survey. Of this, the captive call centers

employed 130,000 agents, while the outsourced industry employed more than

150,000. According to the survey the Top 10 outsourced players employed 71,645


In Dataquest's rankings of the outsourced players, Intelenet Global Services

took the top spot with revenues of Rs. 137.5 crore in 2006-07. Aegis BPO

Services and Infovision ranked second and third on the Dataquest list with

revenues of Rs. 132 crore and Rs. 119 crore in 2006-07 respectively.

Interestingly, the top 10 players contributed Rs. 749 crore or 47 percent of the

outsourced industry size. The Top two players have a good mix of clients from

the telecom and banking and financial services industry (BFSI). However, the No

3 player, Infovision has a predominantly banking clientele with 14 banks

including HSBC, ICICI Bank, American Express and ABN Amro being serviced by it.

Mphasis, HTMT and Magus occupy the next three slots at No. four, five and six

with revenues of Rs. 80, Rs. 65 and Rs. 58 crore respectively.

According to Dataquest Chief Editor Prasanto K. Roy, "Government and

citizen services are growing rapidly, and this presents a high potential market

in the coming year. As the market enters a phase when players will have to

rapidly scale up, the industry needs to focus on attracting, retaining and

developing manpower."


Telcom and Banking sector: the big outsourcers

The Dataquest study says that the telecom and the banking and financial services
industry (BFSI) players, who are the big clients today, together accounting for

80 percent of the domestic outsourced call centre business. Almost all the

telecom major players — Bharti, Vodafone, BSNL, Spice and Idea have outsourced

their call center services. Leading players like Vodafone and Airtel have spread

themselves across the BPOs, with at least five of the top ten call centres

having these two on their client list.

While telecom players are outsourcing largely inbound customer service, the

BFSI segment prefers to keep customer service in house only giving out

telemarketing services — a mix of cold calling, sales queries and loyalty

selling. Predictably, it is the private sector banks that have taken the lead in

outsourcing with ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Citibank, ABN Amro, HSBC giving out a

lot of business. But the survey notes that India's largest bank, State Bank of

India, too has begun outsourcing recently.

The Dataquest survey reveals, almost all the large banks today have fairly

centralized call centers that employ in thousands, and it is unlikely that they

will let go of their core banking processes for reasons of confidentiality.

Retail, travel, hospitality and healthcare to drive future domestic call

center growth

The Dataquest study predicts that several BPO export players including

Genpact, vCustomer and Teleperformance will also begin to focus on the domestic

opportunity to shore up their performance. The new domestic call centers may

however, be based out of towns like Bhubaneswar, Durgapur, Pondicherry, Indore

and Chandigarh.