Wrightbus International, the company behind the iconic London double-decker buses, officially opened its Middle East headquarters in Masdar City, today. A global leader in hybrid and all electric public transport and urban mobility, the company will look to leverage its strategic base at Masdar City - Abu Dhabi’s pioneering low-carbon city – to respond to the region’s growing need for innovative, efficient and clean transportation.
Wrightbus International, the overseas arm of the Wright Group, joins some of the world’s leading technology companies in establishing a presence in Masdar City’s cleantech cluster. Siemens, Schneider Electric, General Electric and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries are among more than 130 companies, across a range of industries, that are registered within Masdar City’s unique dual investment and free zone.
“We are delighted to welcome Wrightbus International to Masdar City,” said Anthony Mallows, Director of Masdar City. “Wrightbus International brings decades of experience and a commitment to innovation and technology that compliments the vision of Masdar City. With advancements in hybrid, low-carbon urban mobility driving the urban sustainability agenda, the role of public transport will become ever more important, not just in Abu Dhabi but across the region and the world.”
The flagship UK company’s presence in Masdar City, Abu Dhabi’s fastest growing commercial corridor where significant infrastructure and real estate is being developed,further strengthens economic ties between the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.
Commenting on the launch, Paul Fox, Charge d’affairs, British Embassy Abu Dhabi said: “I am delighted to see this outstanding UK business extending its international reach with a new base in Abu Dhabi. Wrightbus International manufactures 21st century buses, at the cutting edge of technology and innovation and I am certain their products will support the aspirations of Abu Dhabi and many others in the region for developing world class bus fleets.”
Providing a springboard for the Northern Ireland-based company’s business aspirations inthe region, the Wrightbus International office will be led by Middle East Director, Paul Brannigan. The company already has operations across the Subcontinent and South East Asia, with offices in India, Singapore and Hong Kong.
“The Wright Group, have had trade links with the Middle East since the 1970s and Masdar City now offers Wrightbus International the perfect regional platform from which to further our business interests in the GCC region,” said Brannigan. “Masdar City and Wrightbus International share core principles of a commitment to smart technology and product innovation in the field of low carbon transportation.
“As the region’s only clean technology cluster, we are confident Wrightbus International will flourish in this special economic zone,” continued Brannigan. “With innovation at its core and a strategic location, just five minutes from the expanding Abu Dhabi International Airport, we are excited about the opportunities Masdar City offers.”
Wrightbus has been at the vanguard of technological innovation since its formation in 1946.Today, it continues to develop its expertise in hybrid, flybrid and fully electric powered technology across its range of double deck, single deck and articulated buses and Rapid Transit Vehicles.
In 2009, Wrightbus, the U of the Wright Group, was commissioned by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, to build a cleaner more efficient, 21st century version of the Routemaster – London’s iconic red double-decker bus. The “Boris Bus,” as it has been nicknamed, began service in 2012 and 600 of the low emission hybrid buses have been ordered.
Managing Director of Wrightbus International, Damian McGarry, said; “There is a fundamental shift to public transportation throughout the Middle East and we see this is a long term trend as people increasingly value the ability to travel without a car. As the region works towards is sustainability ambitions,the benefits of cleaner, more efficient public forms of transport will become more and more important.”
“This is a highly significant and exciting development for Wrightbus International,”concluded Brannigan. “With the ongoing support of UKTI and Invest Northern Ireland, we plan to use our new office in Masdar City to support the region’s evolving transportation requirements.”
Wrightbus International will launch a regional demonstration programme of the environmentally friendly Streetlite Bus, which offers unsurpassed levels of fuel efficiency in the "midi-bus" market segment.