San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

High-Tech Firms Announce Expansion

IBM and Hewlett-Packard will both expand operations in Costa Rica and create jobs for a market that recently saw massive layoffs.

IBM announced last week it plans to open 500 jobs in the short term, bringing its employment to 1,200 in Costa Rica as of 2007.

IBM invested $4 million in its Costa Rica expansion, which includes a new employee support center in the free zone of Heredia, northwest of San José. IBM has had operations in Costa Rica since 2004, the company said in a statement last week.

A few days later, Hewlett-Packard announced it will more than double its employment in Costa Rica in 2007.

The company employs 2,800 Costa Ricans in its GlobalServicesCenter, where it has a call center and outsources business processes such as payroll, finances, accounting, and information technology.

Hewlett-Packard announced it will expand its operations in Costa Rica and contract at least 3,500 workers by the end of 2006, the wire agency ACAN-EFE reported.

HP’s Commercial Manager for Central America, Cesar Trujillo, told ACAN-EFE the company plans to employ as many as 7,000 workers in the country by the end of 2007.

The announcement of new jobs by the two companies came just after BetonSports online gambling call center laid off 1,200 workers, many English speakers, from its San José offices after U.S. authorities arrested the company’s C.E.O. and ordered the company to stop taking bets from U.S. gamblers (TT, Aug. 18).


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