April 4, 2016, MONCTON (GNB) – WestJet, one of the most successful companies in recent aviation history, is creating more than 400 home-based jobs over the next four years in the Greater Moncton area, Premier Brian Gallant announced today.

“We are pleased that a successful and well respected business like WestJet has chosen to invest in New Brunswickers,” said Gallant. “Our bilingual and highly-skilled workforce has made us a leader in the business services centre industry. It is great to see that 400 more New Brunswickers will be able to work here because of this deal.”

Since its inception in 1996, WestJet has grown from a company with 220 employees flying to five destinations, to almost 12,000 employees and over 100 destinations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean and Europe.

“We have always taken our responsibility to provide our signature friendly, caring and stress-free service in both of Canada’s official languages seriously,” said Gregg Saretsky, WestJet president and CEO. “A second call centre based in Canada’s only officially bilingual province, in a city known as a centre of excellence for contact centres, will allow us to provide additional hours of service for our French-speaking guests.”

The home-based jobs will require strong communication skills as well as proficiency in computer programs and data entry.

Opportunities NB will contribute a $1 million forgivable loan and up to $2.5 million in payroll rebates for a $62 million return on investment. Once the jobs are created, the annual provincial GDP is expected to increase by $24 million. The total WestJet payroll in New Brunswick over the first six years is expected to be $34 million.

Opportunities NB is a Crown corporation that seeks to attract and support opportunities to grow the economy and create jobs. It provides support services for businesses across the province.

WestJet Announcement 04-04-2016

From left: Mike McNaney, vice-president of industry, corporate and airport affairs, WestJet; Agriculture, Aquaculture and Fisheries Minister Rick Doucet, who is also minister responsible for Opportunities NB; Mark Porter, executive vice-president of people and culture, WestJet; Gallant; and Stephen Lund, CEO of Opportunities NB.

MEDIA CONTACT(S):

Valerie Kilfoil, communications, Opportunities NB, 506-453-8168.

WestJet, media relations, media@westjet.com.