BT to support the Invictus Games and Armed Forces leavers

BT supports international event for wounded, injured & sick Service personnel 
Openreach reaffirms its commitment to civilian work attachment programme 

BT today announced that it will support the inaugural Invictus Games and renewed its commitment to employing former servicemen and women. 

The Invictus Games, an international sporting event for wounded, injured and sick personnel from the Armed Forces, will take place in London in September. The Games have been championed by HRH Prince Harry and will be staged in partnership with The Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, the Ministry of Defence and Presenting Partner Jaguar Land Rover. Today BT adds its support by becoming an Official Supporter of the Invictus Games. 

Meanwhile BT’s Openreach division, which is responsible for rolling out fibre broadband across the UK, today reaffirmed a commitment to its civilian work attachment programme, which helps to facilitate a smooth transition from the Forces into the civilian workplace. The business has recruited more than 1600 new engineers from ex-Armed Forces personnel over recent years as it continues to roll out fibre broadband across the UK. 

Sir Keith Mills, Chair of the Invictus Games Organising Committee, said: “The Invictus Games is going to be one of the major highlights of 2014 and a real inspiration to many around the world. We are delighted that BT, which has been a tireless and long-term supporter of disability sport, will be supporting this event and building on the legacy of London 2012.” 

Sir Michael Rake, Chairman, BT Group plc, said: “BT has been championing disability sport for 25 years. We are proud to support the Invictus Games, which will be a powerful expression of values we hold dear - inclusion and inspiration through sport.” 

BT has a long history of support for the British Armed Forces. Openreach has hired former servicemen and women into engineering roles in recent years and BT also employs several hundred reservists. These include personnel attached to 81 Signal Squadron, a specialist Territorial Army unit that provides telecommunications engineering expertise to the British Army on exercises and operations worldwide. 

The company also has a long-term, successful partnership with the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD), providing a range of communication and security services and it works closely with the British Army’s Personnel Recovery Unit in Edinburgh, one of a number of such facilities to enable wounded, injured and sick personnel to return to duty or transition to civilian life. 

Joe Garner, CEO, Openreach, said: “I’m delighted we are continuing to recruit so many highly skilled, motivated and disciplined people from the Forces. These courageous soldiers have served Britain for many years, and we are pleased to offer them the chance to use their talents to serve their country in another way – by helping deliver the broadband infrastructure that will be the backbone of the British economy in the 21st century. 

“BT is investing around £3 billion in building Britain’s fibre broadband infrastructure, and our engineers are rolling the technology out faster than anywhere else in the world. Our Armed Forces recruits are a welcome boost to that effort, augmenting an already world-class team.” 

People interested in applying for a role at Openreach should visit the Openreach website. 

Notes to Editors 

About BT and the Armed Forces 
BT has a well-established relationship with the Armed Forces: 

• BT has a strategic partnership with the Ministry of Defence, providing voice, data, and conferencing communications, plus ICT infrastructure for the MOD and the UK Armed Forces. For the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, BT helped the MOD to set up its OP OLYMPIC fixed communications capability to ensure access to secure military communications and appropriate information and systems. 
• BT has supported a number of charities supporting the serving and ex-Service community including Soldiering ON, the Royal British Legion and the Army Benevolent Fund. 

About the Invictus Games 
The Invictus Games is an international sporting competition for wounded, injured and sick Service personnel. The event takes place in London from 10-14 September 2014. The event will see over 400 wounded, injured and sick Servicemen and women, serving and veteran, competing in eight sports: Athletics; Archery; Wheelchair Basketball; Road Cycling; Indoor Rowing; Powerlifting, Wheelchair Rugby; Swimming; and Sitting Volleyball. Teams will come from the armed forces of nations that have served alongside each other. Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will host events at the iconic London Aquatics Centre, Copper Box Arena, Here East and Lee Valley VeloPark, while track and field disciplines will run at Lee Valley Athletics Centre. The BBC is the official broadcast partner. Jaguar Land Rover is the presenting partner of The Invictus Games. 

The Invictus Games is being organised by a specially formed committee, in partnership with The Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, and the Ministry of Defence. The Board is chaired by Sir Keith Mills GBE, formerly the deputy chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) and includes Sir Nick Parker and Lt General Andrew Gregory, chief of defence personnel. They are supported by the delivery team from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. 

More information on tickets and the full competition schedule are available at www.invictusgames.org