Wrightbus dismisses report of major Hong Kong export deal
BALLYMENA manufacturer Wrightbus has dismissed a media story that it has won a major export deal to send 500 buses to Hong Kong.
It was reported the firm had secured a multi-million contract to supply the vehicles to the Kowloon Motor Bus Company (KMB).
Wrightbus employs around 2,000 people and is one of the north's biggest export success stories.
And although it has a long standing relationship with KMB, there was "no new deal to report", Wrightbus said.
"Wrightbus is aware of certain press coverage this morning suggesting that the company has secured a major new export order - this is not the case," said a spokeswoman.
"The company has a long-standing policy of not making comments regarding its commercial activities unless there are matters of substance to confirm.
"Wrightbus will therefore be making no further comment or statement regarding this matter."
A contract for 500 new coaches would easily dwarf any previous deal with KMB.
Wrightbus co-founder and chairman William Wright had been quoted in the Belfast Telegraph saying: "Hong Kong can easily buy buses from China, but they come to us (when they want) quality."
It is understood Wrightbus has sold around 500 vehicles to KMB over a series of previous deals.
It has been working with the business since 2003 and delivered its last batch of 290 double-decker buses to KMB throughout 2011.
Wrightbus exports to countries across the world but in particular to Asia and the Far East where it has significant presence in Singapore and India.
William Wright (88) started the company in 1946 along with his father Robert.
He was a leading member of the Northern Ireland campaign for a Leave vote in the recent EU referendum, making him one of the only senior business figures in the north to back Brexit.