BT's £502 million pound boost for Buckinghamshire economy
Communications company responsible for nearly 37,000 jobs
across the South East – including more than 5,900 in Buckinghamshire
BT generated a massive £502 million for the Buckinghamshire 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 37,000 jobs in the South East – of which more than 5,900 are in Buckinghamshire - through direct employment, its spending with contractors and suppliers and the spending of employees.
In addition, 1 in every 22 employees working in the IT and communications sector in the Buckinghamshire Thames Valley LEP area is directly employed by BT.
In employment terms, BT’s impact in the South East for 2014-15 was larger than the region’s insurance sector and around £1.5 billion was spent with regional suppliers.
The overall beneficial financial impact of BT activities is expressed as a “Gross Value Added” (GVA)** contribution. For the South East the BT GVA totalled £3.1 billion – equivalent to £1 in every £70 of the region’s total GVA – of which £502 million was in Buckinghamshire.
Tim Fanning, associate director at Regeneris Consulting, said: “Our analysis confirms the sheer scale and reach of BT’s ongoing economic contribution to the South East and the UK as a whole.
“BT makes a contribution to every community across the UK. At the UK level, £1 in every £80 of wealth created is attributable to BT – this is one of the single largest contributions to the UK economy by any firm.”
Dave Axam, BT’s regional director for the South East, said: “There are few organisations in the South East that have a larger impact on the day-to-day life and future prospects of the region than BT.
“We are one of the region’s largest private sector employers and investors – our investment in fibre broadband in the South East 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 local 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 people 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 the South East:
Is responsible for the employment of 10,300 people – 9,050 direct employees and 1,300 contractors – of which more than 1,100 are in Buckinghamshire with a total employment income of £378 million;
Committed more than £2m 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.
In the South East, BT is the major private sector partner in broadband partnerships in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, East Sussex, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Kent, Oxfordshire, Surrey and West Sussex. Through these partnerships and the company’s commercial roll-out, BT has already made fibre broadband available to more than three million South East homes and businesses – and this number is continuing to grow rapidly.
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 the South East contributed more than 6,200 volunteering days to worthy causes, amounting to in-kind support of more than £1.9 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 £4.9m for charities across the South East.
Dave Axam added: “It’s evident BT people throughout the South East 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
*Local Enterprise Partnership area.
**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.