A MONEY-saving public transport pass aimed at businesses has been hailed a resounding success after netting more than £200,000 in only ten months.

The Corporate MetroSaver, launched by Nexus in June last year, has proved popular with local employers keen to ensure their staff have a simple journey to work.

More than 20 companies have signed up for the card, which gives unlimited travel on the Metro and the Shields Ferry for one year.

Nexus said the method adopted by most of its Corporate MetroSaver clients is to give staff an interest-free loan and then recoup the cost of the card in repayments spread over a year. Businesses signing up for the card include high street names such as Marks and Spencer, John Lewis, Barclays Bank and Northern Rock.

The public sector has also been quick to embrace the scheme, including the Freeman Hospital Trust, the Inland Revenue, Sunderland Royal Hospital and Connexions, the Government education initiative for 13 to 19 year-olds.