Vivarail gives notice to go into administration | So Good News
The supplier of rolling stock has been looking for new investments since early 2022.
A battery-powered Vivarail class 230.
UK rolling stock supplier and battery traction pioneer Vivarail has filed a notice of intention to appoint administrators.
Vivarail says it has been dependent on financial support from a single investment partner since its inception in 2013. However, the company agreed to continue operating without relying on additional funding earlier this year and has so far failed to secure a sale or further investment despite “working hard to attract new investors.” Vivarail says it has no choice but to submit the notice of intention.
“While we have been encouraged by the interest, the time is now against us to allow potential investors to step in,” said Steve McBride, managing director of Vivarail. “Combined with sluggish market conditions and delays in reaching certain key commercial arrangements we have had no choice but to lodge a notice of intention to appoint administrators with the courts.”
Vivrail adds that as this “undoubtedly represents a degree of uncertainty for everyone associated with Vivarail, including our 70 employees”, the board and directors will leave no stone unturned in finding a solution.
“We will now consult with our customers and other stakeholders to try to take the business forward, but we have to be realistic that if we are unable to deliver a bailout, administration will unfortunately be inevitable.”
Founded in 2013 by former Chiltern Railway chief executive Adrian Shooter, Vivarail has been working to develop and test battery traction technology. This has included converting former D-stock London Underground trains to battery-powered units. The company has secured contracts to supply trains to London Northwestern, West Midlands Trains, South Western Railway for use on the Isle of Wight and Transport for Wales (TfW). It also tested the D-stock trains in the United States in cooperation with the Railroad Development Corporation.
Vivarail has also developed a Fast Charge system capable of charging train batteries in just 10 minutes.