Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Lack of UK rail electrification drives Keltbray to Canada

Network Rail

Keltbray is set to work overseas for the first time as concerns build over the ‘immediate future of the UK rail electrification arena’.

The British engineering and construction firm is entering into a JV with infrastructure development company Aecon in Canada to target contract opportunities on major rail overhead line electrification works.

Keltbray Group CEO, Brendan Kerr said that the decision to work abroad was taken due to the uncertain UK landscape.

“Our rail overhead line electrification business continues to go from strength to strength, increasing turnover by 11% in 2017,” Kerr said.

“However the immediate future of the UK rail electrification arena looks less certain, and whilst we will maintain our commitment and focus on the UK market, it is only sensible and prudent for us to consider markets overseas which provide a greater degree of certainty in the medium term.

“Electrification is seen as a cornerstone in Canada’s drive to tackle climate change, and with our track record, we see Canada as a market with major opportunities for Keltbray.

“I believe our capabilities are a great match. We are in the very early stages of this partnership, but have started to relocate a small team of 10, which will be based in Canada to help us establish and plan for forthcoming tenders and works there over the coming months.

“While this new venture is exciting, we remain fully committed to winning electrification works and growing our business within the UK, where we continue to see opportunities.”

Aecon Rail Electrification Director for Canada, Dean Frazer, added: “We at Aecon are absolutely delighted in our new Joint Venture with UK partners Keltbray.

“The businesses complement each other in both knowledge and expertise, and will undoubtedly form an integral part in assisting Infrastructure Ontario with delivering the $ of rail overhead contact system electrification works across Canada over the next ten years.”

Last month, Transport secretary Chris Grayling was found to have cancelled the electrification of sections of the Midlands Mainline knowing that the alternative required bi-mode trains which ’did not exist’.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.