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44. Wright Group

Managing director: Mark Nodder

Employment: 990

Turnover: £134.5m

Pre-tax profit: £4.1m

Ballymena-based company the Wright Group had a challenging year in 2010, but its strategy of innovation and export focus is beginning to reap rewards.

In the 2010 financial year The Wright Group was awarded an Asian export deal worth £21m to deliver 300 double-deck bus kits to SBS Transit for assembly in Singapore. They also secured the prestigious New Bus for London contract to make the eco-friendly replacement for the iconic London Routemaster bus.

Investment in technology and innovation capabilities, supported by Invest NI, also led to contract orders worth over £7m with Mistral Group (UK) plc and Isle of Man Transport for the new StreetLite midibus model.

In February Wright Group won an order from bus operator Aviva for 334 new buses. The contract for 204 double-deck and 130 single-deck buses is worth around £55m. Arriva runs routes in cities across the UK, including London and Glasgow.

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