Electric van maker Arrival continues to expand in Bicester

ELECTRIC van maker Arrival Ltd has taken on another new facility at Network @ Link 9 in Bicester as it continues its rapid expansion. The Oxfordshire and London-based company has acquired Unit 6, covering 30,000 sq ft for their composites production facility on a 10-year lease at ?8.25 per sq ft. The deal was agreed by VSL & Partners and White Commercial for landlord Barings Real Estate Advisers.

Arrival is creating the world’s first Generation 2 electric vehicle, using unique technologies to create affordable, purpose-built electric vehicles for commercial customers. The rapidly expanding technology company develops software, materials, and components and makes the purpose-built vehicles from its microfactories. Glenn Saint, Chief of Commercial Vehicles of Arrival, said: “Arrival is revolutionising electric vehicles with our Generation 2 solution that means customers can buy a purpose-built electric vehicle for the same price or less than a petrol or diesel equivalent.

READ AGAIN: Police raid homes in Cowley “Critical to making this possible is manufacturing in microfactories which can serve the local community and respond rapidly to local demand.” VSL & Partners director Tom Barton has previously secured manufacturing facilities for Arrival in Banbury, Oxford and Bicester.

He said: “We are working closely with Arrival to facilitate their property requirements in Oxfordshire and are delighted to have secured a further manufacturing plant to accommodate their continuing growth. “Arrival is bucking the current trend and taking big strides to facilitate their ability to meet demand. “Their expansion is truly impressive and a testament to the technology and investment confidence in the business model.”

Arrival has trialled prototypes with a wide range of companies including Royal Mail, DHL and DPD, as well as BT. In January Arrival received an investment and order of 10,000 vehicles from logistics giant UPS worth ?339m. The purpose-built electric vans will be rolled out in the UK, Europe and North America starting this year and continuing until 2024, with UPS retaining the option to purchase another 10,000.

The company also secured an ?90m investment from South Korean car firms Hyundai and Kia earlier this year which is funding the next stage of its development. READ AGAIN: Woman pedestrian fighting for life after bike collision The ?3bn valuation meant that Arrival achieved ‘unicorn’ status in February, a new company valued at more than £1bn (?770m) – a remarkable achievement for a UK manufacturing company, particularly one only formed in 2015.

The business now occupies 50,000 sq ft of offices in London as well as research and development centres in Banbury, the USA, Germany, Russia, Netherlands and Israel. It also plans to build microfactories near Los Angeles and New York. The company is expanding its UK and global workforce from 800 people and is ramping up production over the coming year.

VSL director Mr Barton previously secured Arrival’s research and development facility at Oxford Business Park which they outgrew and in 2017 acquired a manufacturing facility of 111,560 sq ft of industrial space at Banbury Cross, off Southam Road in Banbury for its first electric truck assembly plant. In February this year Arrival acquired a new production facility at Unit 1A Link 9 in Bicester for a new automotive microfactory manufacturing plant.

VSL agreed a 15-year lease on a 120,600 sq ft facility which is likely be operational in 2021. Once operational, Arrival will be producing 10,000 vehicles from this microfactory per year. READ MORE: Former Ashmolean Museum curator dies

Network @ Link 9 is a multi-unit production and warehouse development which forms part of the 35-acre, 530,000 sq ft Link 9 commercial development in Bicester. The scheme features seven units each with large dedicated service yards and car parking areas. The specification of the units is to the highest standard and the design offers occupational flexibility with open plan first floor offices, additional ground floor glazing and 10m clear internal height.

Network @ Link 9 is located on the Link 9 commercial development which is adjacent to the Bicester perimeter road to the M40 at Junction 9. Only one of the seven units now remains at Network @ Link 9 – Unit 5 featuring 17,656 sq ft of high specification offices and warehouse space with service yard and car park. READ MORE: Five Guys burger bar reopens for takeaways

VSL & Partners was established 17 years ago with a team of 10 and now employs the largest commercial property agency team in the area.