Transport firm Arriva said it is determined to expand its rail presence despite losing out on the bid to operate London’s lucrative Crossrail services.
Hong Kong-based MTR Corporation were announced as the winning bidder to run the cross-London Crossrail services for eight years with an option to extend to 10 years.
The firm, which also operates the London Overground concession with Arriva UK Trains as well as running the metro system in Hong Kong, beat Arriva Crossrail Limited, National Express Group PLC and Keolis/Go Ahead to the contract.
MTR said it expects to employ around 1,100 staff with up to 850 new roles, creating many hundreds of jobs for local people.
Sunderland-based Arriva voiced its disappointment at losing the bid, but says it remains determined to explore rail markets.
The firm said: “Arriva submitted a strong bid to operate Crossrail and we are obviously disappointed not to have been successful.
“Building on our wealth of UK and European rail experience, we will continue to focus on expanding our presence in those markets.”
Go-Ahead has also said it is “disappointed” to have lost out in the race to win the £1.4bn Crossrail contract.
A statement issued by the Newcastle-headquartered firm said: “The Go-Ahead Group is disappointed not to have been awarded Transport for London’s Crossrail franchise for which it submitted a joint bid with Keolis (65% Keolis/35% Go-Ahead).
“In May, Go-Ahead was awarded the Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern franchise by the Department for Transport and is working hard to prepare for the start of the contract in September 2014. This important and complex franchise will deliver customer improvements and value for money for taxpayers. Go-Ahead’s bid team continues to work on other upcoming opportunities.”