Wrightbus secures £50 million UKEF financing to turbocharge green exports

A assure from UK Export Finance (UKEF) has supplied Northern Eire-based bus producer Wrightbus with £50 million in financing to assist its bold exporting technique.

This Export Growth Assure sees the UK’s export credit score company assure 80 % of the mortgage from Barclays Financial institution.

This financing builds on earlier authorities assist introduced final yr, serving to ship on the Prime Minister’s precedence of preserving the economic system rising. The event offers Wrightbus vital working capital assist in addition to a extra versatile solution to deploy the funds to assist its enterprise wants.

It will allow Wrightbus to ship orders to new markets, reminiscent of Germany and North America, in addition to further orders in current markets like Singapore and Hong Kong.

The announcement comes every week after Minister for Funding Lord Johnson visited Wrightbus’ website in Ballymena, County Antrim as a part of a wider go to to Northern Eire. There, he met buyers and main companies forward of the Northern Eire Funding Summit happening later within the yr.

Minister for Funding Lord Johnson mentioned: “Wrightbus is a unbelievable instance of a British enterprise seizing the huge exporting alternatives all over the world and embracing clear development. UK Export Finance assist for Wrightbus might be an excellent enhance to its exporting journey, serving to the corporate to create extra native development and jobs.

“That is the kind of success we are going to construct on at this autumn’s Northern Eire Funding Summit, which might be a catalyst for securing extra funding, creating extra jobs and empowering extra companies to grab exporting alternatives.”

The corporate generated 27% of its revenues from exports in 2022 and seeks to develop this by almost a fifth by the tip of 2023 thanks partly to the UK authorities’s assist. To facilitate this development, Wrightbus plans to double its workforce by 2026, creating 1,000 new inexperienced jobs with many of the roles based mostly on the firm’s Ballymena hub.

The corporate’s hydrogen-powered, zero-carbon buses are in robust demand globally with over 600 buses of all kinds anticipated to be delivered by the tip of 2023, up from 450 final yr. Wrightbus now has the biggest hydrogen fleet within the UK, with 100 buses in operation.

Jean-Marc Gales, Wrightbus CEO, mentioned: “UKEF and Barclays’ assist has been elementary to the event of Wrightbus. The versatile merchandise swimsuit the wants of our enterprise, which is rising exponentially and requires monetary headroom.

“We’re enthusiastic about our subsequent part and dealing throughout the Ballymena and wider Northern Eire group to ship revolutionary British know-how to the worldwide market.”

James Binns, International Head of Commerce and Working Capital, Barclays mentioned: “Barclays are proud to work alongside UKEF to allow British firms to get the aggressive edge in relation to exporting.

“This new funding builds on our earlier assist to Wrightbus, offering essential flexibility which can allow additional development in exports and domestically, persevering with the very important pivot in direction of zero-emission gross sales.”

Primarily based in County Antrim, Northern Eire, Wrightbus launched the world’s first hydrogen-powered double-decker bus in 2020, and in addition produces and exports electric-powered single and double-decker buses. The enterprise is aiming to fabricate 3,000 zero-emissions buses by 2024, comprising 10% of the UK’s complete fleet. Wrightbus final month acquired an additional £12 million in joint authorities and industry-backed funding.

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