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Circuit of Wales lands £100m private banking funds

The Circuit of Wales project has secured a potential £100m from a private banking firm which is claimed to be 'the last piece of funding' required
The Circuit of Wales project has secured a potential £100m from a private banking firm which is claimed to be 'the last piece of funding' required.

London-based Kleinwort Benson is stacking up the funds to cover the current hurdle Circuit of Wales is stuck on before being given the green light to begin construction work at Ebbw Vale in South Wales.

Managing director of the private merchant banking firm Nigel Spray, who has worked across the world setting up funding for large developments, has confirmed around £100m will be provided to cover the private funding requested by the Welsh government after rejecting the last funding plan in July.

Economy Secretary Ken Skates declined the funding proposal earlier this year with the request for developers to reduce the underwriting percent covered by the government from 75% down to 50%.

Speaking to BBC Wales, Spray says part of the bank's role while investing was to encourage and secure further funding from the private sector.

"We will be bringing in, roughly speaking, another £100m into the project which is largely funded, but that is the last piece of the funding," Spray told BBC Wales. “We believe that there is a team here that is very experienced and this is exactly the kind of project that investors, not just UK investors, international investors are very keen to be involved in.

"The walls are there - it's our job to put the roof on. There are already very significant private investors in this project and we're looking to specialist investors to come in and do that final piece.

"Although the government is there as a support, really the whole project is being funded by private finance and that I think is the reason why we will see this completed."

A revised proposal is expected to be put forward to the Welsh Government in the coming weeks.

The Circuit of Wales project is set to be financially backed by insurance giants Aviva who are potentially lined up to cover to new funding plan changes.

The venture secured a five-year deal with Dorna to host the British MotoGP which began last year and had originally hoped to move the event to Ebbw Vale in 2017. After interruptions in confirming financial backing MotoGP has been delayed by 12 months, with the Welsh circuit expected to take over hosting duties in 2018.

Silverstone has hosted the first two years of the British MotoGP contract the Circuit of Wales holds and will be called upon for the 2017 race.



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