Wrightbus secures £50 million UKEF financing to turbocharge green exports

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

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

This financing builds on earlier authorities help introduced final yr, serving to ship on the Prime Minister’s precedence of maintaining the financial system rising. The event provides Wrightbus crucial working capital help in addition to a extra versatile option to deploy the funds to help its enterprise wants.

This may allow Wrightbus to ship orders to new markets, equivalent to Germany and North America, in addition to extra orders in current markets like Singapore and Hong Kong.

The announcement comes per week after Minister for Funding Lord Johnson visited Wrightbus’ web site 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 stated: “Wrightbus is a improbable instance of a British enterprise seizing the huge exporting alternatives world wide and embracing clear progress. UK Export Finance help for Wrightbus will likely be an important enhance to its exporting journey, serving to the corporate to create extra native progress and jobs.

“That is the kind of success we are going to construct on at this autumn’s Northern Eire Funding Summit, which will likely 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 practically a fifth by the top of 2023 thanks partially to the UK authorities’s help. To facilitate this progress, Wrightbus plans to double its workforce by 2026, creating 1,000 new inexperienced jobs with a lot of the roles primarily based on the firm’s Ballymena hub.

The corporate’s hydrogen-powered, zero-carbon buses are in sturdy demand globally with over 600 buses of all kinds anticipated to be delivered by the top 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, stated: “UKEF and Barclays’ help 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 inside the Ballymena and wider Northern Eire group to ship revolutionary British expertise to the worldwide market.”

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

“This new funding builds on our earlier help to Wrightbus, offering essential flexibility which can allow additional progress in exports and domestically, persevering with the 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 whole fleet. Wrightbus final month obtained an additional £12 million in joint authorities and industry-backed funding.

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