27/09/2013 08:07 BST | Updated 27/09/2013 08:15 BST

G4S 'In Joint Bid To Supply Bank Of England's Plastic Banknotes'

An G4S Security guard at Alexandra Stadium, Birmingham.

G4S, the security firm behind the London Olympics 2012 security debacle, is reportedly bidding to manage the new polymer banknotes that the Bank of England could start printing from 2015.

The world's largest security company would be making a joint bid for the £1 billion contract to supply Britain's next type of banknotes with French firm Oberthur Technologies, according to Reuters.

Oberthur would focus on printing while G4S would provide security and move the cash around the country. The security firm already transports £300 billion worth of banknotes every year in the UK.

The Bank of England announced a consultation on ushering in plastic "polymer" banknotes to replace cotton paper, with the final decision to happen in December that would potentially see the first banknotes printed in 2016.

G4S was shaken last year by its failure to provide enough security for the 2012 Olympic Games, with the firm recently forced into a £600 million fundraising push to balance its books.

The Bank of England's current printers, De La Rue, are expected to re-bid for the contract.

The Bank's new polymer banknotes are harder to fake, more durable and stay cleaner for longer, as well as being "cocaine-free".

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