‘Starling Bank Bikes’ operator Beryl is set to boost its presence in Manchester.

£1 million in funding from Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) will be used to boost the company’s commercial functions, with the opening of a new city centre office at Embankment and the creation of new employment opportunities for local people.

Long-term, the company’s increased presence in the city will also act as a catalyst for Beryl’s development and delivery of technological innovation.

GMCA will invest £1m in Beryl through the Greater Manchester Investment Fund, which aims to encourage business growth and investment in property and infrastructure.

“This is really exciting news for Beryl and for Manchester, a city that we know from delivering the bike share scheme has a clear vision for a sustainable future, but also a vibrant economic hub with a particularly strong skillbase that a technology-led business such as ourselves can benefit from,” said Beryl CEO and co-founder Phil Ellis.

“The Starling Bank Bikes are already widely known for their contribution towards this vision, offering sustainable alternatives to the cars, vans, taxis and motorbikes that clog up our urban environments on a daily basis. 

“However, what many don’t see is the work done by companies, such as us, to provide the development and employment opportunities that are essential to the future of a green economy.    

“We acknowledge our value should transcend the provision of high quality sustainable shared transport schemes and we look forward to realising the exciting opportunities that this funding has presented to us.”

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Launched in November 2021, the Starling Bank Bikes scheme – so named due to a sponsorship deal – is managed and funded by TfGM, on behalf of Greater Manchester Combined Authority, and operated on a day-to-day basis by Beryl. 

The scheme currently serves a wide range of employment, retail, education and leisure hubs such as the universities, the city centre and MediaCity with plans to expand further across the region. 

The scheme currently has over 72,000 registered users and its bikes and e-bikes have generated over 624,000 journeys across more than 1.5m kilometres. This has had a significant impact on regional air quality by saving over 19 tonnes of harmful carbon emissions according to industry calculations.

Cllr David Molyneux, GMCA lead for resources and investment, said: “We are pleased to be backing another business which has made a major commitment to growing its presence in Greater Manchester. 

“Beryl is operating the cycle hire scheme which is having a positive impact on residents’ day-to-day lives, contributing to Greater Manchester’s wider active travel and sustainability ambitions.

“We want Greater Manchester to be a place where businesses thrive, providing people with well-paid and secure jobs as they grow. Through our investment funds we are supporting businesses who share our vision for the right kind of economic growth.”

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