Deal with unnamed US engine producer represents major boost for Cambridgeshire firm that created the floors of the London Eye's pods and parts of Blackfriars Bridge
Manufacturing firm TRB Lightweight Structures has struck a £19m deal to export electric car battery parts made from organic waste to the US.
Under the deal, components made from plant waste will be shipped from TRB's Cambridgeshire headquarters to a facility in Kentucky, where they will be supplied to an unnamed Fortune 500 global engine producer.
"Sustainability is important to us and we are passionate about developing lightweight solutions for transportation, which will make vehicles more efficient and reduce CO2 emissions," said TRB president Andrew Dugmore, as he welcomed the deal.
The lightweight components are manufactured at a similar cost to heavier aluminium, according to the firm.
Dugmore said that the firm, which has supplied parts for the London Eye, Airbus planes, and Blackfriars Bridge, currently had a pipeline of "multi-million pound deals" lined up with a number of clients as demand for light weight materials grows in response to ever more demanding fuel and energy efficiency standards.
The latest deal will help TRB meet an aim of generating 70 per cent of its turnover from exports by 2021, up from 30 per cent five years ago.
International Trade Secretary Liz Truss applauded the deal, which she said was proof of "international demand for UK innovation and manufacturing".
"More trade and investment is crucial to the economic recovery from coronavirus, and deals like this will help deliver that," she added.
Truss is currently leading the government's ongoing trade negotiations with the US, which are set to establish the framework for trade between the UK and its largest single trading partner.
She added that she hoped the ongoing talks would result in a free trade agreement that would "cut red tape for UK businesses". However, green campaigners and some businesses remain concerned the putative deal could lead to an erosion of UK environmental standards and unfair competition for British firms.
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