DAVID Wallace, the former Abbey National high-f lier, is to replace John Boyle as the executive in charge of the day-today running of Response Handling Limited, the call centre operation owned by Rangers chairman David Murray, The Herald has learned.

Under the reorganisation, Boyle, a long-time employee of the Murray empire, will become chairman of RHL. Boyle presided over RHL last year when the company was dropped as the contact centre provider by US computer giant Hewlett Packard in favour of Larbert, Stirlingshire-based Telecom Service Centres.

Boyle was reported to have been locked in talks for months with HP in an attempt to save the lucrative contract.

In the dog-eat-dog world of contact centre contracts, RHL acquired the call centre business of telecoms firm Thus for GBP1.75m in 2004, along with the HP contract, worth GBP12m in turnover for a 16-month duration.

The loss of the HP contract and absorbing the extra costs of integrating the call centre business of Thus, meant profits at Murray's Glasgow-based call centre operation almost halved in the year to January 2005.

Wallace's appointment appears to be aimed at beefing up the management of RHL, with Boyle focusing on strategy.

Wallace had been in charge of the roughly 3000-employee Abbey National life assurance operation in Glasgow before it was bought last year by Spanish banking giant Santander. He left Abbey last July.

Boyle previously looked after electronics business Mimtec, when it was part of the Murray International stable.

RHL's customers currently include BSkyB, ScottishPower, Aegon, the Royal Bank of Scotland and the Scottish Executive.