Qualfon acquires Fort Collins-based Center Partners

FORT COLLINS – Qualfon Inc., a global business process outsourcing and call center service provider, has acquired Fort Collins-based Center Partners Inc., a call center outsourcing company.

Qualfon acquired Center Partners in a cash deal from Kantar, a subsidiary of advertising and marketing services company WPP. The sale price was not disclosed.

Business process outsourcing involves the contracting of specific business tasks to a third party.

A person answering the phone at Center Partners Thursday referred questions to Qualfon. Officials for neither Qualfon nor Kantar could be immediately reached.

Center Partners has 2,500 employees at its six call centers in Colorado, Washington and Idaho, according to a Qualfon press release. As of April, the company had 800 at its two locations in Fort Collins, though the Qualfon release made no mention of how current Center Partners employees would be affected by the acquisition.

After announcing last July that it would lay off 600 workers, the company said in October that it would instead hire 900 new employees, including 400 in Fort Collins. Just last month, the company said it would be adding more than 200 full- and part-time jobs in Northern Colorado.

Center Partners will integrate into Qualfon and take on the Qualfon branding, the press release stated. Qualfon chief executive Mike Marrow will continue to lead the company.

Qualfon has 10,000 employees at its locations in New York, Texas, the Philippines, Guyana, Mexico and China. The addition of Center Partners adds to the company’s United States presence.

“We found an outstanding business in Center Partners that shares the same people-oriented approach and is a perfect fit to both diversify our client base and also to enable us to have an experienced United States delivery operation offering premier services to clients,” Marrow said.

A Kantar statement about the sale of Center Partners said that Center Partners had 2013 revenue of nearly $110 million.

“These businesses stand stronger together,” Center Partners CEO Jim Dunn said in the Qualfon release. “Today is a major turning point as Center Partners adds global capabilities, and it’s also the brink of a new era that presents an even more promising horizon for our clients and employees.”

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