BT’S £4.5 billion pound boost for London economy

BT generated a massive £4.5 billion for the London economy in the past year, according to an independent report published today.

Communications company responsible for nearly 51,600 jobs

across the capital;

BT spends £2.2 billion a year with local suppliers

BT generated a massive £4.5 billion for the London economy in the past year, according to an independent report published today.

The report, by Regeneris Consulting, also shows that the communications company supports nearly 51,600 jobs in London through direct employment, its spending with contractors and suppliers and the spending of employees.

In employment terms, BT’s impact in 2014-15 was larger than the capital’s insurance sector. Around £2.2 billion was spent with the capital’s suppliers.

The overall beneficial financial impact of BT activities is expressed as a “Gross Value Added” (GVA)* contribution. For London the BT GVA totalled £4.5 billion – equivalent to £1 in every £75 of the region’s total GVA.

Tim Fanning, associate director at Regeneris Consulting, said: “Our analysis confirms the sheer scale and reach of BT’s ongoing economic contribution to London and the UK as a whole.

“BT makes a contribution to every community across the UK. At the UK level, £1 in £80 of wealth created is attributable to BT – this is one of the single largest contributions to the UK economy by any firm.”

Chet Patel, BT’s regional director for London, said: “There are few organisations in London that have a larger impact on the day-to-day life and future prospects of the capital than BT.

“We are one of the capital’s largest private sector employers and investors – our investment in fibre broadband in London alone amounts to hundreds of millions of pounds - and the services that we provide are a vital part of every community.

“The facts and figures shown in this report highlight the full extent of BT’s contribution to the capital’s economy as we go about the daily business of keeping people connected and introducing new technologies, which are creating fresh opportunities and transforming lives.

“Aside from the company’s activities, the report also draws attention to the positive ways BT people are contributing to the communities where they live and work, whether they are a volunteer for a worthy cause or a local shopper.”

Social Study 2015 – The Economic Impact of BT in the United Kingdom’ analyses the key role BT and its employees play in economic, business and community life across the English regions, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

It highlights the positive contributions made by BT through the salaries and wages of employees and contractors, and the beneficial impact of its procurement and overall expenditure around the UK.

The report highlights that BT in London:

  • Is responsible for the employment of 13,300 people – 11,300 direct employees and 2,070 contractors – with a total employment income of £516 million;
  • Provides work for a further 38,300 people through BT’s spending with businesses that supply its equipment and services, and the spending of employees;
  • Committed more than £3.1m to community, charity and voluntary programmes, spread around many regional communities in 2014/15;
  • Has enabled more than three-quarters - 77 per cent - of its employees to work flexibly.

    BT is investing more than £3 billion in the roll-out of fibre broadband in the UK through its own commercial programme and by working with the Government and local authorities in broadband partnerships to extend next generation broadband even more widely – especially to more rural and remote communities.

    Plans announced in September 2015 will increase overall fibre availability across London, taking all networks into account, from around 90 per cent** to around 95 per cent of premises. Installing fibre in urban areas can be challenging, but with new techniques and extra investment BT will now be able to reach hundreds of thousands of additional homes and businesses across London.

    The report also highlights how BT is consistently one of the country’s leading investors in innovation with spending on research and development in the 2014/15 financial year reaching £502 million. Among the latest developments, the company has started trials of ultrafast G.fast broadband, which is already delivering download speeds up to 330 megabits per second (Mbps).

    This new technology will be rolled out to 10 million UK homes and businesses by the end of 2020 and the majority of premises within a decade.

    Volunteering is also a core element of BT’s strategy. Last year, BT people in London contributed more than 6,000 volunteering days to worthy causes, amounting to in-kind support of more than £1.8 million. Across the UK, the figure is 50,500 days, worth more than £15 million.

    In addition, MyDonate – BT’s commission-free online fund-raising service – has helped to raise more than £21m for charities across London.

    Chet Patel added: “It’s evident BT people throughout London really want to make a positive contribution to the communities in which they live and work. Every day BT employees help millions of people to communicate, do business, be entertained and stay informed.”

    UK-wide, BT’s total GVA contribution is assessed at £18 billion. The company supports 217,000 jobs directly and indirectly and last year spent £6.5 billion with UK-based suppliers. As a result of the full economic impact of BT, the firm supports £1 in every £80 of GVA in the UK economy and one in every 110 UK employees.

    The full report is available at: www.bt.com/reports

    Note to Editors

    *Gross Value Added (GVA) measures the value of all goods and services produced in an economy. GVA combines wages and operating profits from companies and other organisations. Growing GVA can reflect improvements in workforce skills, productivity, R&D and innovation. The figures for BT show the value added directly through BT's services and additional value generated through BT's suppliers across the nations and regions.

    ** Figures based on Ofcom’s “Infrastructure Report 2014” data.