Zappos’ former Henderson headquarters welcomed Nevada’s governor, local economic officials and politicians as it rolled out the red carpet Thursday for a British banking company that expects to hire hundreds of employees this year.
Barclaycard US, the credit card division of Barclays Bank PLC, opened its new customer-service call center. The center opened for business with 130 employees, but the bank expects that number to grow to 400 by the end of the year.
The call center will have 700 employees by December 2015, and 1,000 once it’s fully operational, Barclaycard Chief Operating Officer Patrick Wright said.
“This is about jobs,” Wright told more than 50 people who attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony in the Green Valley Corporate Center. “We’re just getting going here. We held a job fair in November and 1,500 people showed up. Our first training class has 130 employees. We can only train so many at one time.”
Wright said the company was going as fast as it could in hiring employees. He described the region’s workforce as “an ideal match to our company needs.”
Employees will work in customer service, collections, retention support and Spanish-language service. Barclaycard’s call center employees will earn an average hourly wage of $14.18, according to company officials.
Wright was joined Thursday at the company’s grand opening by Gov. Brian Sandoval, Henderson Mayor Andy Hafen, Henderson Economic Development Director Barbra Coffee, and Tom Skancke, president and CEO of the Las Vegas Global Economic Alliance.
“This is an amazing time for our state and Henderson to have our newest employer Barclaycard in our community,” Skancke said. “We were also able to help employ people who lost their jobs in the last four to five years.”
Skancke said Barclaycard gave the hundreds of Citigroup employees laid off recently an opportunity to “walk right into a job.” In January, Citigroup eliminated the last 220 jobs at its facility at The Lakes in western Las Vegas, following its announcement in September it was laying of 760 in its mortgage unit.
Andrew Mailloux is one of those former Citigroup employees.
“I’ve lived in Las Vegas for six years,” Mailloux said. “I was laid off on Dec. 9 from Citi after working in the mortgage service department and with the cards department. I was hired here shortly after that to supervise a group of 12 to 20 relationship managers.”
Mailloux, 35, said Barclaycard is giving him the opportunity to continue his financial services career.
The financial services company is renting about 91,300 square feet of high-end office space in two buildings and recently completed tenant improvements to the offices at 2280 and 2290 Corporate Circle.
Barclaycard, based in Wilmington, Del., was lured to Henderson with financial assistance provided by the economic development office in September. The office approved the company’s $1.87 million funding request.
“The first class is in training,” Sandoval said. “There will be 400 Nevadans (who) are now going to be working. That’s what this is all about. We are going to work with you, embrace you. … Barclaycard, welcome to the family.”
Sandoval praised the economic development office, saying they’ve gone from holding meetings with one company interested, to 10 pages with 10 to 12 companies on each page looking to come to Nevada.
Barclaycard used the state’s assistance for furniture and fixtures in Henderson. The state funds will be paid out only after the company reaches and maintains certain employment levels.
Zappos was leasing 156,000 square feet in three buildings at Green Valley Corporate Center. The online retailer, owned by Amazon.com Inc., moved into its new headquarters in old Las Vegas City Hall in September. The company, founded by Tony Hsieh, brought 1,500 employees to downtown Las Vegas.
Contact reporter Chris Sieroty at email@example.com or 702-477-3893. Follow @sierotyfeatures on Twitter.