Leading social enterprise HCT Group is delighted to announce that it has been chosen to be the preferred tenderer for the provision of bus services in Jersey. This major announcement comes hot on the heels of the announcement last month that the social enterprise bus operator had been announced as preferred tenderer for bus services in Guernsey. This latest news sends a clear message that social enterprise can triumph over mainstream competition in the delivery of public services.

To get to this stage, HCT Group out-competed several of the world’s largest commercial operators in a rigorous tendering process. The group believes that its string of business successes is down to the power of the social enterprise business model. Focusing on delivering real value for service users and local communities rather than shareholders, is increasingly being recognised as a viable alternative in the marketplace.

Dai Powell, HCT Group’s Chief Executive, explained the significance of today’s announcement:

“Our model is well established - we use the surpluses generated from commercial contracts to create real social value on a local level. We don’t distribute profits to shareholders.

Our way of working is simple: we make sure that we work in partnership with local authorities and local communities so that we can deliver a service that is best suited to local need and works in an optimal way. Some things come as standard when you are a social enterprise: the simple fact of asking people who are going to be using the service what they actually want, and adapting services accordingly, is one of them.

We know that wherever we operate, there are social needs - people who can’t use mainstream bus services to access vital local amenities, people with mobility or learning difficulties who need assistance from properly qualified people when they’re out and about, long term unemployed people who need support to develop their skills and gain access to employment opportunities.”

Subject to negotiations that are currently underway, CT Plus (part of HCT Group) will commence operating Jersey’s bus services from 1 January 2013. The contract will be for the operation of all bus services on the island, including school buses.

Media contacts

Hayley Brent-Isherwood at CO3 hayley@CO3.coop 020 7749 3349 or 07909 544817.

Tim Purcell at CO3 tim@CO3.coop 020 7749 3368 or 07904 056668.

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