Savile Row tailor Gieves & Hawkes is making significant savings on its telephony costs after switching to an internet protocol-based telephone service.

The company signed for Viatel’s Voice over IP (VoIP) service and connected its Savile Row and Surrey main offices with broadband last June. Since then, it has saved 7.5 per cent on its line rental costs and 22 per cent on calls.

The retailer removed eight analogue phone lines and a costly ISDN line that linked the two sites. The VoIP service provides competitive call charges and all inter-site calls are now free.

Each member of staff has a phone number that travels with them. Using a laptop with a broadband connection, staff can also make and receive calls on the same number while abroad.

Gieves & Hawkes technical consultant Sam Thompson said: “Our commercial director is spending a lot of time in China at the moment. Someone can ring his London number and it will be routed around the world to anywhere with internet access.”

Gieves & Hawkes finance director David Collins said that the Viatel service was proving more reliable than that of previous suppliers.

“BT has had some problems with its network in the West End and there were several periods when its network was down for a couple of hours. We have had no problems since switching to Viatel,” he said.