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Scottish companies urged to seize HS2 contract opportunities

Businesses in Scotland are being encouraged to bid for millions of pounds worth of upcoming contracts supporting the delivery of Britain’s new railway, HS2.

The number of businesses in Scotland who have so far registered an interest in becoming a potential HS2 supplier is significantly lower than in other parts of the UK, which could mean that local businesses risk missing out.   

Potential contracts with HS2 are not just about track and trains. HS2’s construction partners are seeking to engage businesses across a broad range of sectors from catering services, designers and ecologists to logistics and electronic components.

Robin Lapish, HS2 Ltd’s Supply Chain Manager said:

“Scotland has a huge talent pool and leads the way in sectors including technology and engineering, creative industries, renewables and low carbon.

“There are countless opportunities for local businesses to be winning work into the next decade and beyond. A contract with HS2 could turbocharge growth and help sustain and create new jobs as businesses strive to bounce back from the pandemic.”

With construction of the first phase of HS2 between Birmingham and London progressing at pace and the railway’s journey further North now confirmed, following the green light from government to extend to Crewe, HS2’s construction partners are reaching out to tier two and three providers to bid for upcoming subcontract opportunities.

HS2 Ltd has already awarded around £18bn worth of contracts, with a significant proportion of this value expected to flow out to the wider supply chain. By the end of 2022, it’s estimated this figure will reach around £25bn. Over 2,000 businesses have already won work on the project, with UK-based businesses making up 98% of contracts.

As the UK strives to build back better, businesses of all sizes are encouraged to get ‘HS2 ready’ and seize the opportunity to play a part in revolutionising our railways.

David Leven, Head of Economic Opportunities at Scottish Enterprise, said:

“Scotland has a real wealth of expertise in engineering, technology and renewables, as well as a rich history in the rail industry.

“HS2 is a huge infrastructure project and, as we move into post-Covid economic recovery, there is a huge opportunity for businesses in Scotland to be involved in a venture which could provide work for decades and will have a legacy for generations.

“Being involved in HS2 has the potential to expose contractors to new global markets emerging through the move to more sustainable railways. At Scottish Enterprise, we are helping to support Scottish SMEs get ready for this with our development of an international rail cluster, and we look forward to seeing businesses here play their part in one of the biggest rail and environmental projects of our time.”

Getting ‘HS2 ready’ couldn’t be easier. HS2 Ltd and its construction partners use the CompeteFor model to help match demand with supply.  All subcontract opportunities are advertised on the portal, and businesses who set up a company profile can receive tailored alerts to opportunities that match their trade.

Robin added:

“It takes minutes to set up a company profile on the CompeteFor platform and that simple step could be vital to a business securing its future.  Just 29 companies in Scotland have won work on HS2 so far and we really want to see that figure grow.”

For more information about joining HS2’s supply chain visit hs2.org.uk/building-hs2/supply-chain/


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