Large street demonstrations disrupted call centers catering to French firms, leaving numerous clients stranded on helplines, officials said. The protests are a continuation of unrest in the Tunisian capital that has seen the government collapse and the president flee.
According to reports on the ground, the protests forced the shutting down or reduced hours, forcing a number of companies to re-route calls back to helpdesks in France.
French group Teleperformance, the world’s leading call center operator, said on Tuesday that it had reopened all of its centers in Tunisia after heavy disruption on Monday, but that opening hours remained restricted by a state curfew.
A France Telecom spokesperson told reporters that calls were being redirected to France, noting some nine percent of calls from France Telecom’s internet subscribers were handled by centers in Tunisia.
Telecoms operators and other companies have increasingly been outsourcing their customer services departments to North African countries such as Morocco and Tunisia, in a bid to cut operating costs.