BPO sector on track to hit $25-b revenue

The information technology and business process management industry is on track to generate as much as $25 billion in revenue and create 1.3 million direct employees by 2016.

The sector expects more traffic within the next two years with the increasing share of more value-added services despite an already huge base.

Information Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines president and chief executive Jose Mari Mercado said there were still unsaturated areas, leaving a huge space for growth in back office space, finance and accounting services as well as healthcare.

Growth in 2013 was basically due to foreign clients who kept on coming back for more work to be done outside the Philippines, he said.

Another growth driver is the so-called “captives” market, which are in-house business processing units or call centers that cater to specific needs of their mother unit in the Philippines.

The group is aiming for a 16 percent increase to $18 billion this year from $15.5 billion in 2013. It is confident of reach the 1-million employment target within the year. Employment by IT and business processing companies in 2013 hit 900,000.

The Philippine Institute for Development Studies said the Philippines could be a hub for services trade in the Asia Pacific because of a pool of skilled, semiskilled and low-skilled workers.

“The estimated 10.4 million Filipinos abroad are a natural market for Philippine services. The Philippines can be a home to world-class brands with the internationalization of Philippine franchise brands,” said PIDS research consultant Ramonette Serafica.

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