Wrightbus Chief Executive Buta Atwal (pictured) will retire at the end of 2022. He will be succeeded in the post by Jörg Hofmann, who will join the Ballymena manufacturer from the London Electric Vehicle Company in September to allow a smooth handover.
Mr Atwal became Wrightbus Chief Executive in 2019 after the business was purchased out of administration by Jo Bamford. Mr Bamford successfully persuaded Mr Atwal to leave retirement at that time, but Mr Atwal says that he now wishes to spend more time with his family, pursue personal interests and explore his faith.
He describes his leadership of the revitalised Wrightbus “as an enormous privilege,” and adds that he is comfortable leaving the business “with a tremendous team in place.”
“It is with some considerable satisfaction that I will be leaving at the end of a year which has seen us hit some incredible highs, with our hydrogen buses having clocked up more than one million miles and our StreetDeck Electroliner officially named the most efficient double-deck battery-electric bus in the world. I strongly believe that this is just the start for what Wrightbus can achieve.”
Mr Bamford says that Mr Atwal has been “instrumental in the success of Wrightbus” and has paid tribute to his contribution.
“He left no stone unturned in driving this business forward and delivering what experts have said is the most efficient zero-emission bus in the world.
“I managed to persuade Buta to come out of retirement once, when we bought Wrightbus out of administration in October 2019, but twice has proved impossible and he leaves with our best wishes and thanks for a job well done.”