Mumbai grown, ‘Made in India’, now a global gold standard in visa outsourcing, VFS Global, which has been a trusted partner for the UK Government since 2003, has won the global contract for overseas UK visa and Citizenship services. This award is the latest in a long line of wins for the world’s leading visa, passport and citizen services provider.
During 2024, VFS Global will deploy 240 Visa and Citizenship Application Service (VCAS) Centres for the UK in 142 countries across Africa & Middle East, Americas, Australasia & Europe, China & Taiwan, and Asia & Asia Pacific regions. These centres will accept all categories of visa applications as well as UK passport applications in some locations. Combined, these new centres are estimated to process 3.8 million applicants every year.
During the year, VFS signed with five other countries – namely, Sweden Global, Australia Global, Latvia Global, Iceland Global and Austria Global; creditable achievements on the global pecking order.
Beyond the scale of the deployment, VFS Global will invest to improve the customer journey and increase accessibility – including through new customer websites, and through updated in-person experiences. And VFS Global will deploy its latest technologies to maintain robust identity checks and ensure the integrity of the visa and passport application process. The new contract is expected to deliver savings to the UK Government.
- VFS Global becomes the service provider for all UK Visa and Citizenship Application Centres overseas – operating across 142 countries.
- Estimated to manage 3.8million applicants every year, VFS Global is now opening UK application centres in 84 new countries during 2024.
- New contract will also see significant investment in technology to improve the customer experience, accessibility and security.
- The UK contract is the sixth global contract won by VFS Global during 2023.
Zubin Karkaria, Founder and CEO, VFS Global, said, “We are delighted to win this contract and expand our partnership with the Home Office to become their service provider for all UK visa customers overseas. We are excited to begin operations in new locations, and to take the next step towards providing customers with a seamless, simple and secure visa and passport application experience. This win is a testament to our dedicated efforts to provide all our client governments with best-in-class services.
The UK is a popular destination for travellers from across the globe with India, China, Nigeria and Turkey being the top four application locations.
In addition to the VCAS Centres, VFS Global will expand its network of additional paid application centres bringing the visa application process closer to home for customers through partnerships with popular hotels and resorts. VFS Global currently offers these in India, UAE and the USA through hotel partners in those countries.
This win comes soon after VFS Global being awarded the global biometric collection service mandate with Australia and renewal of the global visa service contract with Sweden.
VFS Global is the world’s largest outsourcing and technology services specialist for governments and diplomatic missions, at present the trusted partner of 70 client governments, operating a global network with more than 3,300 Application Centres in 147 countries. The company has processed over 270 million applications since its inception in 2001. The company manages non-judgmental and administrative tasks related to applications for visa, passport, and consular services for its client governments, enabling them to focus entirely on the critical assessment task. The company headquarters are in Zurich/Switzerland and Dubai/United Arab Emirates.
VFS Global is majority-owned by funds managed by Blackstone, the world’s leading alternative asset manager. The Swiss-based Kuoni and Hugentobler Foundation and EQT, a global investment organisation, headquartered in Stockholm/Sweden, hold minority stakes in VFS Global.