Top 200 unveiled

New research has been published by Bondholder the University of Derby ranking Derby and Derbyshire’s top 200 most successful businesses.

The league table, compiled on behalf of the Derby Telegraph by academics from the university’s Business School, shows the biggest contributors to the region’s economy.

Four Bondholders feature in the top ten, with Bondholder Rolls-Royce topping the table with fellow OEMs Toyota UK and Bombardier close behind. Construction giants Bowmer & Kirkland were placed 8th.

It is the third year that the research, based on turnover, has been published with the aim of lifting the lid on local businesses who are leading from the front and showcasing the world-class businesses in Derby and Derbyshire.

Speaking at the launch event held at the University, John Forkin of Marketing Derby said "This list captures the nature of our vibrant local economy and, as well as including some of the ubiquitous large corporates, it is interesting to see the number of dynamic SMEs in growth.”

To see the full Top 200, sponsored by Bondholder Invictus Communications, click here

Rolls-Royce electric deal

Bondholder Rolls-Royce has completed the acquisition of the electric and hybrid-electric aerospace propulsion activities of Siemens (formerly known as the eAircraft business), following a period of employee consultation.

The timely execution of the deal, announced in June this year, underlines the fit of these activities to Rolls-Royce's strategy to ‘champion electrification’ and will help accelerate its ambitions to play a major role in the ‘third era’ of aviation.

Rob Watson, Director – Rolls-Royce Electrical, said: “We are very pleased with the rapid execution of the necessary legal and procedural steps to complete this acquisition. We are welcoming our new colleagues into Rolls-Royce today and look forward to working with them to pioneer new technologies and solutions.

“We are at the dawn of the ‘third era’ of aviation, which will bring a new class of quieter and cleaner air transport to the skies, and our new colleagues will add vital skills, expertise and new technology to our portfolio.”

The former Siemens business, based in Germany and Hungary, employs around 180 specialist electrical designers and engineers who have been developing a range of all-electric and hybrid electric propulsion solutions for the aerospace industry. They will continue to work in their existing locations.

Paul Stein, Rolls-Royce Chief Technology Officer, added: “The technology portfolio and skills that we have acquired complement our existing developments in electrification, which include micro-grids and hybrid electric trains as well as aerospace applications.

“Electrification is just one of the ways in which we are making aviation more sustainable. We are continuing to increase the fuel efficiency of our gas turbines; increasing the integration between airframe and engine; and encouraging the development of sustainable fuels.”

The closing of the deal is the latest in a series of electrification announcements from Rolls-Royce. At the end of August, it launched a joint research programme on zero-emissions aviation with Widerøe, the largest regional airline in Scandinavia. The programme is part of the airline´s ambition to replace and electrify its legacy regional fleet by 2030.

Earlier the same month, Rolls-Royce signed a letter of intent for the construction of a demonstration plant for the production of synthetic fuels in the Lausitz region of Germany, together with the State of Brandenburg, Brandenburg University of Technology Cottbus and other industrial partners.

A new hive for Alton Group

A global engineering and technology consultancy has officially opened a new office in Derby in order to be closer to key clients in the aerospace and rail sectors.

Alten Group, which is headquartered in France, has moved into offices on Pride Park, which it has dubbed ‘The Hive’.

Its new Derby base, which has been given its name following a competition held among the firm’s consultants, has the capacity to house almost 200 people - and the firm has announced that it will be looking to add 150 aerospace and rail experts to its ranks.

Alten was created 30 years ago and today has a presence in more than 25 countries, employing around 34,000 staff. As an engineering and technology consultancy, it supports its customers’ development strategies in the areas of innovation, research and development and information systems.

The company has been active in the UK almost since it was first founded - and in the past five years alone has seen the business grown by more than 80% year-on-year. Before opening its new Derby office, the firm had already established close links with some of the city’s major manufacturers.

Since 2017, it has been developing partnerships in and around the city with firms involved in the aerospace, rail and agricultural machinery sectors. Alten has already established relationships with some of Derby's major manufacturers

It is now as a close partner of Rolls-Royce, which has its Civil Aerospace and Defence divisions in the city, with more than 100 of its consulting engineers involved in aircraft engine-related activities. In rail, Bombardier Transportation, which has its Derby train-making factory in Litchurch Lane, is a long-term partner of Alten.


Minister at Roundhouse

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has visited Bondholder Derby College Group (DCG) to learn more about work underway to better prepare young people for the world of work.

DCG will be one of the first colleges to offer the new T-Level qualifications in Construction, Digital and Education & Childcare from September 2020 with a particular focus on extended work experience.

Ahead of the launch, DCG has already established close links with regional employers who have co-designed the curriculum to meet their needs and provide work experience, industry visits, special projects and guest lectures for students across the College.

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Mr Williamson met with employers who are heavily involved in the Employment and Skills Academy programme such as Bondholder RDS Global and with apprenticeship programmes such as engineering companies Garrandale, Bondholder Rolls-Royce, SNC Lavalin, Pentaxia and Laystone.

He went on to meet some of the first Engineering and Professional Construction students and apprentices who are benefiting from the new state-of-the-art Mechatronics laboratory supported by a £1.3m grant from Bondholder D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership.

Mr Williamson said: “Derby College is playing an important role in the launch of the T-Level programme and is already ahead of the game in preparing young people for the world of work. This has been a fascinating visit and an opportunity to meet a wide range of employers, college staff, students and apprentices."

DCG Vice Principal Kate Martin concluded: “The Secretary of State was very interested in the pioneering work that we are doing across the College. The Roundhouse college opened this month ten years ago and Mr Williamson was keen to learn more about the history considering his family links to the rail industry and his father actually worked at the former loco works on this site. It was a privilege to therefore explain how we transformed the derelict buildings and the original Roundhouse to be at the heart of college life.”

Blazing a trail

Bondholder Derby Museums is inviting artists from across Derbyshire and beyond to submit their designs for the Derby Ram Trail, a unique public art event that will take place in the city centre next summer.

The Trail will see 30, five-foot ram sculptures threaded across the city in a free-to-view art event that will raise valuable funds for Derby Museums through sponsorship and auction. Marketing Derby is proud to be a Derby Ram Trail sponsor.

Tony Butler, Executive Director at Derby Museums, said: "We are looking for original designs that are bright, colourful and full of fun and flourish for this family-friendly art event. We welcome both new and established artists. Anyone from the creative community can submit a design. We look forward to receiving a wide variety of creative submissions over the coming weeks.”

Based on artist Michael Pegler’s famous stone ram sculpture, located on Derby’s East Street, the Derby Ram Trail is being led by Derby Museums in partnership with Wild in Art, a leading creative producer of free public art, alongside Presenting Partner Cathedral Quarter and headline partners Derby and Burton Hospitals Charity, St Peter’s Quarter and Bondholders Bloc Digital and Rolls-Royce.

Artists are now invited to submit their designs for the blank sculptures in any art form, from traditional to new media, fine art to illustration, graffiti, to mosaic, and many more. A selection of designs will be shortlisted by a panel of judges and presented to the event’s sponsors – local businesses and organisations, who will pick the final designs. Commissioned artists will receive an honorary payment.

The 30 amazing decorated Rams will go on public display between June and August 2020 in locations across Derby City Centre. Once the trail has finished, the sculptures will be brought together for one weekend – the Ram-union – before they are auctioned off to raise money for Derby Museums’ Endowment Fund, helping to secure the future of Derby Museums.

Artists must submit their ideas before 9am on 3rd December 2019 to be in with a chance of seeing their design on display as part of the Derby Ram Trail next summer. Information packs with full details dimensions are available to download at

For more information about the Derby Ram Trail, or to receive an Artist Brief, contact Greg Hewitt on 01332 642327 or email: Project progress can be followed on Twitter @DerbyRamTrail.

Aero engine lands at Mill


Bondholder Rolls-Royce's Trent 1000 aircraft engine which powered the Boeing 787 Dreamliner on its maiden flight in 2006 has been installed at the new Museum of Making, part of Bondholder Derby Museums Trust.

As the latest phase in this £17 million development, the Derby-made Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engine was winched into the new Museum by a team of specialists earlier this month. Excitingly, just one year from now, the new Museum of Making will be crammed full of 50,000 objects – large and small – for the public to explore, engage with and even make their own versions.

Tony Butler, Executive Director, Derby Museums explains: “Even though the Museum of Making won’t open until next autumn, the Trent engine had to be installed at this early stage as the new Museum’s Civic Hall had to be literally built around it, due to its huge size. The engine and its stand weighs seven tonnes, so it required a four tonne tractor and a three tonne trailer to manoeuvre it into position. We worked alongside teams from Rolls-Royce and our contractors’ Speller Metcalfe and GCA, who laid down a concrete floor and erected a metal structure around the engine in order to lift it up and winch it into place. For this part of the operation, a special rigging company was called in to help too, so it was quite an engineering feat!”

“This is an engine that was developed, tested and made here in Derby, so we hope locals and those living further afield will agree that this is an engine worth celebrating and coming to see!”

The Trent 1000 is a feat of modern engineering: the fan at the front of the engine is more than nine feet across, and sucks in more than a tonne of air every second at take-off. The blade tip travels at more than 900mph – faster than the speed of sound and when flying, the temperature inside the hottest parts of the engine can be almost half as hot as the sun.

Gill Fennell, Community Investment Manager of Bondholder Rolls-Royce said: “We’re thrilled that our Trent 1000 engine will be one of the first objects that people see as they come into the new museum, and hope visitors will be inspired by the wonders of aviation and engineering, including what it takes to design and build the cleanest, quietest, lightest and most efficient aircraft engines used in modern aviation today. Rolls-Royce has partnered with the Museum of Making from the outset because it will inspire people to be curious, and develop the STEM skills we need to pioneer new technologies for the 21st century.

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Science park phase two plans move forward

Plans for the second phase of development at The University of Derby Science Park, which includes the expansion of the iHub, have taken a step forward after a request for a screening opinion was submitted to the city council.

The science park – which forms part of Infinity Park - is a collaboration between Derby City Council, the Harpur Crewe Estate, Rolls-Royce and developers Cedar House, Wilson Bowden and Peveril Securities.

It is located in the south of the city, next to the global headquarters of Rolls-Royce Civil Aerospace.

The second phase could comprise an extension to the iHub, including 38,394 sq ft at the ground floor and 21,764 sq ft at the first floor.

Two more buildings are proposed; a diagnostic centre which would span almost 29,000 sq ft over two floors and a cancer treatment facility which would provide almost 43,000 sq ft of space.

Known as the Rutherford buildings, they will be used for patient diagnostics and treatment including MRI imaging, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, proton beam therapy and supportive care.

The development would also include car parking, infrastructure works, drainage, access, roads and attenuation ponds.

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Pattonair merger

Bondholder Pattonair has further strengthened its credentials in the global aerospace market after reaching a $1.9 billion agreement to merge with US-based Wesco Aircraft Holdings.

The deal means Pattonair will significantly expand its US presence as well as reinforce its operations in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific.

Discussing the deal, Wayne Hollinshead, Pattonair CEO (pictured below), said: “This is great news for our company and customers and will create new avenues for growth and expansion.

“Wesco is an outstanding business with an impressive track record for innovation and customer service, so we are excited about the prospects of working together.”

Both companies are regarded as world leaders in supply chain management for the aviation and defence sectors and their merger will benefit the combined customer base through increased scale and even greater efficiency.

Pattonair, which employs around 600 people in Derby and a similar number in its operations throughout the rest of the world, already works with some of the biggest brands in the aerospace and defence industries, including clients such as Rolls Royce and BAE Systems.

Todd Renehan, Chief Executive Officer of Wesco, said his company was excited at the prospect of working with Pattonair.

“This is the right transaction for our shareholders, customers and employees,” he said.

“It is a strong validation of our customer value proposition and it will allow us to find new and innovative ways to bring more value to customers, enhance relationships with suppliers and create additional opportunities for employees.”

Platinum Equity Partner Louis Samson said Wesco was well-positioned to benefit from long-term trends in the aerospace and defence industries.

“Bringing Wesco and Pattonair together will create a truly global enterprise, benefiting the combined customer base through increased scale and access to new technologies,” he added.

The merger is expected to complete by the end of 2019, subject to Wesco shareholder approval and regulatory clearances.


Rolls-Royce builds for BA

British Airways has taken delivery of its first A350 aircraft powered by engines made in Derby by Bondholder Rolls-Royce.

The airline has ordered a total of 18 aircraft, all of which are powered by Trent XWB engines, designed, developed and built in Derby, and got its hands on its first A350-1000 at Airbus’ headquarters in Toulouse, France.

The delivery of the first aircraft makes British Airways the first operator of the A350-1000 in the International Airlines Group (IAG). The new aircraft features a Club Suite section - the first new business class seat for British Airways in 13 years. It offers direct-aisle access, a suite door for greater privacy and luxurious flat-bed seats.

British Airways, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary, will initially use the aircraft to fly between London and Madrid prior to flying long-haul routes from September.

Carolina Martinoli, British Airways’ director of brand and customer experience, said: “We are delighted to welcome the first of our A350s to the fleet. This aircraft marks a significant and exciting milestone in our £6.5 billion investment programme and is even more special as it comes with our new Club Suite. The A350 is a fantastic aircraft and an excellent showpiece for British engineering."


MBO at Morrison Design

Bondholder Morrison Design Limited has announced its acquisition by its management team.

The new owners and directors will be Peter Newman-Earp, David Gardner and Nik Clarke, who will take control of the business from former owners Nigel Walding and George Love. Nigel will continue to be involved in a consultancy role to continue to provide his wealth of experience and knowledge.

Morrison Design was founded in 1948 by war veteran Sam Morrison and recently celebrated its 70th anniversary. The company provides architectural design, planning and project management services on commercial design and build and refurbishment projects for hotels, schools, fire stations and company offices and manufacturing facilities.


Morrison Design has been the appointed architect on many local, UK and overseas projects. These include work for Bondholders Morley Hayes Golf Club and Rolls-Royce, as well as a £91m five-star hotel in Grand Caymen and multiple hotel projects in London, Dublin and Portugal.

Commenting on the management buyout (MBO), Dave Gardner, Director said, “It’s a great relief to be able to talk more publicly about the deal and announce our plans for building our business as a team. We have worked on some really high-profile projects in the past, and going forward we hope to profile our work more prominently as we seek to expand our portfolio of clients and further build our credibility.”

Advisers on the deal were David Mellor from Johnson Tidsall and David Tomlinson from Bondholder Powell & Co who acted on behalf of the MBO team.

Rolls-Royce wins in Paris

Rolls-Royce had a successful Paris Air Show last week with the announcement of deals for its Trent 7000 engines with Virgin Atlantic, AirAsia and Cebu Pacific.

Virgin Atlantic is to introduce 14 A330neo aircraft from Airbus – exclusively powered by the Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engine.

Chris Cholerton, Rolls-Royce, President – Civil Aerospace, said: “This fleet expansion is another great endorsement of both the A330neo and Trent 7000, our very latest version of the Trent. We are deeply grateful for the trust that Virgin Atlantic has placed in us – soon their entire fleet will be 100% Rolls-Royce powered.”

Also at the Show, AirAsia unveiled the first of its new-generation Airbus A330neo aircraft exclusively powered by the Trent 7000 engine. Chris Cholerton said "We are excited to see the aircraft grace the skies in Asia".

The Derby-based civil aerospace giant also announced that the Trent 7000 engine will power 16 new Airbus A330neo aircaft for Philippine-based carrier, Cebu Pacific.

In other news from Paris, Rolls-Royce celebrated with Aeroflot an incredible new record for an engine in service, as one of the airline’s Trent 700 engines has completed more than 50,000 engine flying hours without requiring an overhaul – a world record for a widebody engine.

That’s the equivalent of travelling around the world more than 1,000 times, the engine running non-stop for more than five years or travelling to the moon and back 50 times!

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Rolls-Royce eAircraft deal

Bondholder Rolls-Royce has entered into an agreement to acquire the electric and hybrid-electric aerospace propulsion activities of Siemens (the eAircraft business) in a move that will accelerate its electrification strategy.

The eAircraft business, based in Germany and Hungary, employs around 180 specialist electrical designers and engineers who have been developing a range of all-electric and hybrid electric propulsion solutions for the aerospace industry. The eAircraft team are already known to Rolls-Royce as they have worked together on the E-Fan X demonstrator project which, when flying, will demonstrate hybrid electric propulsion at the scale required to power regional aircraft.

Rob Watson, Director – Rolls-Royce Electrical, said: “Electrification is set to have as dramatic an impact on aviation as the replacement of piston engines by gas turbines. We are at the dawn of the third era of aviation, which will bring a new class of quieter and cleaner air transport to the skies.”

"I look forward to welcoming our new colleagues into Rolls-Royce and working with them to pioneer new technologies and solutions.”

The acquisition is expected to complete late 2019, following a period of employee consultation.

As part of this agreement, Rolls-Royce will look for opportunities to work with Siemens as both companies recognise the importance of helping to support national and international goals of CO2 emission reductions for the benefit of society.

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Rolls-Royce wins in Paris

Bondholder Rolls-Royce had a successful Paris Air Show last week with the announcement of deals for its Trent 7000 engines with Virgin Atlantic, AirAsia and Cebu Pacific.

Virgin Atlantic is to introduce 14 A330neo aircraft from Airbus – exclusively powered by the Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engine.

Chris Cholerton, Rolls-Royce, President – Civil Aerospace, said: “This fleet expansion is another great endorsement of both the A330neo and Trent 7000, our very latest version of the Trent. We are deeply grateful for the trust that Virgin Atlantic has placed in us – soon their entire fleet will be 100% Rolls-Royce powered.”

Also at the Show, AirAsia unveiled the first of its new-generation Airbus A330neo aircraft exclusively powered by the Trent 7000 engine. Chris Cholerton said "We are excited to see the aircraft grace the skies in Asia".

The Derby-based civil aerospace giant also announced that the Trent 7000 engine will power 16 new Airbus A330neo aircaft for Philippine-based carrier, Cebu Pacific.

In other news from Paris, Rolls-Royce celebrated with Aeroflot an incredible new record for an engine in service, as one of the airline’s Trent 700 engines has completed more than 50,000 engine flying hours without requiring an overhaul – a world record for a widebody engine.

That’s the equivalent of travelling around the world more than 1,000 times, the engine running non-stop for more than five years or travelling to the moon and back 50 times!


New Rolls-Royce STEM centre

Bondholder Rolls-Royce is to open a new Derby centre aimed at interesting youngsters in science, maths and technology.

The new STEM centre will be opened tomorrow at the company's Heritage centre in Osmaston Road alongside a special exhibition to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the first flight across the Atlantic by Alcock and Brown powered by the company's famous Eagle engine.

There will also be the first of a series of exhibitions aimed at young people and featuring elements of what are known as STEM subjects at school - science, technology, engineering and maths.

Involved in creating the new displays is engineer Phil Ruffles, who said the exhibition for young people would tell the story of flight.

He said: "The first stage is to set up an exhibition on the story of flight which will feature a replica of the original apparatus used by George Cayley in 1804 to demonstrate the principles of lift and drag using an aerofoil rotating on the end of an arm driven by a falling weight.

Following on from the story of flight, a similar exhibition is set to tell the story of electricity starting with Faraday's wheel, an electrical generator developed by Michael Faraday in 1831.

Mr Ruffles aaid: "Next year, we plan to illustrate future aircraft including hybrids or electric types. We will also illustrate how materials of various types have enabled these developments. Schools already visit the centre, which is laid out for adults, but the new STEM area will present these innovations in a manner that appeals to children. They can also go around the remainder of the centre during a visit."

The centre plans to hold open days for children and host school visits.


E4E awards night

Enterprise for Education (E4E) - the partnership between Bondholder Derby City Council and local businesses which works to inspire young people to aim higher and achieve more - is holding its first awards event.

The partnership brings employers into city schools to provide inspiration and share real-world careers experience through personal mentoring, mock interviews, career search support, careers events and industry visits.

The first awards event, organised by Derby City Council and sponsored by Copemann Ashby and fellow Bondholder Rolls-Royce will be held at Bondholder the University of Derby's Law Faculty on Tuesday July 2 starting at 4.45pm and finishing at 7pm.

The keynote speaker will be Stuart Garner of Bondholder Norton Motorcycles and awards will be presented by representatives from businesses who have sponsored each category.

E4E Chair Mike Copestake said "Having established excellent relationships with both employers and schools through a number of activities organised by E4E, we were keen to showcase the positive impact that local business people are having on the lives of young people."

“This first awards event will therefore bring everyone together to celebrate the achievements of young people, schools and volunteers who have both supported and benefited from the innovative E4E programme.”

All city secondary schools have been invited to submit nominations for the awards which recognise young people’s engagement and achievements through the E4E programme.

Awards to be presented are:
- Aiming higher (sponsored by the Titan Trust)
- Young Achiever (sponsored by Bondholder Rolls-Royce)
- Good Citizen (sponsored by David Nieper)
- Young Improver (sponsored by Bondholder Bowmer + Kirkland)
- School of the Year (sponsored by Bondholder Freeths)
- Debating competition (sponsored by Derby Law Society)

There is also an award for the Volunteer of the Year from a local employer who has made a particularly outstanding contribution to E4E activities.

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Eagle Engine connections

Bondholder Derby Museums is calling for stories on one of the star attractions of its new Museum of Making, due to open in 2020 - the Rolls-Royce Eagle Engine.

One of the stand-out objects is the Eagle Engine, which helped to power the first transatlantic flight by Alcock and Brown 100 years ago on June 14th and 15th 1919.

Do you have any connections to the Rolls-Royce Eagle Engine? Was someone in your family involved on the Eagle production line at Rolls-Royce? If so the Museum of Making wants to hear from you. The flight was also the first air mail plane and carried some interesting correspondence with it – did anyone in your family receive any mail from the flight?

The Eagle Engine is just one of over 50,000 objects that will go on display at the new Museum of Making when it opens its doors.

Tony Butler, Executive Director at Derby Museums said: “The new Museum of Making is being completely designed and put together with the people and industries of Derby. That is why we are issuing this call to find anyone with stories who can paint a wider picture about their involvement in this key milestone of aviation. It is those personal stories that will bring the Museum of Making to life and help inspire the maker in all of us."

Gill Fennell, Community Investment Manager, Rolls-Royce said: “We are incredibly proud of the role the Eagle Engine played in this amazing milestone in aviation history. As well as celebrating this key moment, we are also looking towards the future skills and expertise we need to help us pioneer new technologies."

If you have stories or connections related to Eagle Engines made by Rolls-Royce in Derby, or are interested in volunteering to help make the new Museum of Making please contact

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Dream engine deals for Rolls-Royce


Rolls-Royce, whose civil aerospace operations are headquartered in Derby, has been selected by Lufthansa Group and STARLUX Airlines to power over 50 new aircraft.

Its Trent 1000 engine will power 20 Boeing 787 Dreamliners and its Trent XWB will power 20 Airbus A350 XWBs for Lufthansa Group.

Dr Detlef Kayser, Member of the Executive Board Lufthansa Group – Airlines Resources & Operational Standards, said: “We are very pleased to select Rolls-Royce to power these aircraft, helping us to provide outstanding customer service. With this order, we will reduce our operating costs, simplify our long-haul fleet and improve our environmental performance.”

Chris Cholerton, Rolls-Royce, President – Civil Aerospace, said: “Lufthansa is a recognised industry leader and this marks a significant endorsement of two members of our Trent engine family. This announcement also strengthens our long-standing and highly-valued partnership with Lufthansa, which has selected the Trent 1000 for the first time and continued to demonstrate its commitment to the Trent XWB.”

This will add to the 20 Trent XWB powered A350 aircraft that Lufthansa already has on order.

The news comes hot on the heals of another announcement that Rolls-Royce has signed an agreement with STARLUX Airlines for 17 Airbus A350 XWB aircraft Trent XWB engines.

The ceremony took place in Taipei, home base of STARLUX Airlines, which will use the aircraft to develop a network spanning destinations across Asia and long-haul services to North America.

K. W. Chang, STARLUX Airlines, Founder and Chairman, said: “We are very glad to celebrate this important moment together with Airbus and Rolls-Royce today. I believe the signing of the official purchase deal for these excellent aircraft will not only strengthen our partnerships, but also boost the development of STARLUX to become one of the best airlines in the world.”

The Trent XWB is the world’s most efficient large aero engine flying today and the world’s fastest-selling widebody engine with more than 1,800 in service or on order. The airline will also operate the latest version of the Trent 1000, the Trent 1000 TEN (Thrust, Efficiency and New Technology), offering high fuel efficiency and low noise.

Rolls-Royce celebrates as first airbus A330neo delivered to TAP Air Portugal


Bondholder Rolls-Royce this week joined TAP Air Portugal and Airbus to celebrate delivery of the first A330neo aircraft to enter service, which is powered by Trent 7000 engines.

Antonoaldo Neves, CEO, TAP Air Portugal, Guilaume Faury, Airbus, President – Commercial Aircraft and Chris Cholerton, Rolls-Royce, President – Civil Aerospace, attended a formal handover ceremony at Airbus headquarters in Toulouse, France.

The exclusive engine for the A330neo, the Trent 7000 is the seventh in a Trent family that has now accumulated more than 125 million engine flying hours.

The Trent 7000 also brings together more than 50 million flying hours of experience from the Trent 700, which powers the original version of the A330.

Mr Neves said: “This is an important moment for our airline and we look forward to entering a new era in customer service and performance with the A330neo, powered by Trent 7000 engines.”

Mr Faury said: “Handing over the first ever A330neo to a long-standing Airbus customer, TAP Air Portugal, is a very important milestone for Airbus. Through continuous innovations, the A330neo, our newest widebody aircraft, will offer maximum value and efficiency to our customers and superior comfort to their passengers. This occasion marks another step forward to meeting our industry’s goal for sustainable aviation.”

Mr Cholerton said: “We are proud to power the delivery of the A330neo and warmly congratulate both TAP Air Portugal and Airbus on this delivery milestone. We are now focused on supporting TAP Air Portugal and ensuring a smooth entry into service that demonstrates all the outstanding attributes of this aircraft.”

Rolls-Royce teams up with rail giant


Rolls-Royce is joining forces with Derby based Porterbrook, the largest owner of passenger trains in the UK, to launch the first hybrid rail project in the country.

Porterbrook owns more than 30 per cent of the UK rail fleet and invests in UK rail, both in purchasing new trains and other equipment as well as improving assets for use on the network.

Rolls-Royce and Porterbook have agreed the delivery of MTU Hybrid PowerPacks that can convert Class 168 and Class 170 ‘Turbostar’ DMUs from diesel-only to hybrid-electric operation.

The letter of intent, which was signed at rail industry trade show Innotrans, covers the delivery of hybrid systems for installation on two test trains.

Following trials, Porterbrook aims to offer hybrid conversion to a range of customers operating existing Turbostar fleets. The announcement comes after Derby-headquartered Porterbrook's profits jumped to nearly £90m during its latest financial year.

Mary Grant, Chief Executive of Porterbrook said: "Porterbrook is committed to reducing the emissions and carbon footprint of our existing diesel powered fleets.

"We hope our investment in this trial of MTU Hybrid PowerPacks will enable us to offer wider fleet fitment of this technology, so that our customers can reduce both emissions and operating costs, as well as improve air-quality along urban corridors.

"Hybrid trains have the added benefit of operating with very little sound when using battery power, offering additional benefits to the railway’s near neighbours.

"This is one of several initiatives that Porterbrook is undertaking to address the challenge, set by rail minister Jo Johnson MP, of removing diesel-only trains from the UK rail network by 2040."

Warren East, Rolls-Royce Chief Executive said: "We are pleased to be helping to write a new chapter of environmentally friendly, quieter and more efficient rail travel in the UK.

"With the innovative MTU Hybrid PowerPacks, Rolls-Royce and our partner Porterbrook will be setting new standards on the UK network; helping to reduce emissions, increase fuel efficiency and improve the lives of people who live near train stations."

The trains will be built at Bondholder Bombardier's Derby site and are expected to be delivered in 2021.

Rolls-Royce flying taxi plans take-off

Flying taxi

Bondholder Rolls-Royce has designed a propulsion system for a flying taxi which it says could take to the skies as soon as early next decade.

The British firm said it had drawn up plans for an "electric vertical take-off and landing" (EVTOL) vehicle, which could carry four to five people.

The vehicle could travel at speeds of up to 250 mph (402 km/h) for approximately 500 miles, it said.

Speaking ahead of this week's Farnborough Airshow, Rob Watson, head of the company's electrical team, said: "We are well placed to play a leading role in the emerging world of personal air mobility and will also look to work in collaboration with a range of partners."

Rolls said the initial concept for EVTOL used gas turbine technology to generate electricity to power six electric propulsors, specially designed to have a low noise profile.

Its wings would be able to rotate 90 degrees, enabling the vehicle to take off or land vertically. It could also use existing heliports and airports.

The Derby-based company has already announced a number of new deals at Farnborough including a new Trent XWB engine for China's Sichuan Airlines and Taiwanese STARLUX airlines. 

The Trent XWB, designed in Derby, is the world's most efficient large aero engine.