Since the successful award of the Wales and Borders rail network Franchise, KeolisAmey have already announced ambitious plans for the network, including the development of the South Wales Metro working in partnership with Transport for Wales (TfW).
However, they have now announced further plans to cement their place in the Principality by relocating two Headquarters to Wales. Keolis UK has announced it will be relocating it’s London Headquarters to Wales by 2019, and will also move their global rail division from Paris to Wales by 2020.
Meanwhile Amey will open a new design hub in Wales where it will offer consultancy services. Further welsh jobs will also be created when the companies open a shared services and customer contact centre providing services to both businesses, in addition to the 600 jobs and the 30 apprenticeships a year announced earlier this week.
The announcement has been welcomed by Welsh Government Ministers.
Ahead of a meeting with Alistair Gordon and Nicola Hindle from Keolis and Amey, Economy Secretary Ken Skates said:
“In line with our Economic Contract, public investment with a social purpose is right at the heart of our new approach to rail, and I am delighted the new rail contract will be delivering tangible and significant economic benefits for Wales.
“The decision by internationally recognised companies Keolis and Amey to between them locate two headquarters and two new offices to Wales is a real coup, and a move that we predict will provide a significant economic boost, beginning with the creation of a further 130 high quality jobs. These are in addition to the 600 jobs announced earlier in the week.
“KeolisAmey has also committed to becoming a Living Wage employer by 2021 and they will ensure that the Real Living Wage is cascaded throughout the significant supply chain
“On top of news earlier this week that the majority of the new trains will be assembled in Newport by Spanish company, CAF, who will be bringing their new manufacturing base to Wales, there is no doubt that the new rail contract will deliver not only improved train services but also very real economic benefits for Wales.”
Alistair Gordon, CEO of Keolis UK, said:
“Being selected as Transport for Wales’ partner for the next 15 years means that we’ll be a part of the fabric of Wales for almost a generation. Moving our headquarters here underlines our commitment and embeds us within the communities we’ll be serving.
“Wales is a great place for any company to base itself. As part of the procurement process, KeolisAmey was exposed to both business and life in Wales and we were impressed with the commitment, skills and quality of life Wales offers. This, coupled with the extensive and innovative nature of Transport for Wales’ ambitions, means that Wales is an obvious location for us.”
Mr Gordon confirmed that Keolis’ new HQ will become a centre of excellence, working closely with the shared service centre to become a centre of knowledge which can be utilised by all Keolis’ subsidiaries.
It will also support the further development of Keolis’ businesses in the UK with new developments in parking, cycling, buses and technology all being led from Wales.
Nicola Hindle, Managing Director of Consulting & Rail at Amey, said:
“As part of our long-term commitment to Wales, and building on our existing presence with over 300 employees delivering services for the Welsh people, we will be investing in a new Amey Consulting design hub in Wales.
“This new office will be a fantastic addition to our strategic network of consultancy hubs across the UK in Birmingham, Manchester, Sheffield, Motherwell, Edinburgh, Belfast and Crawley.”