BT ‘boosted Scottish economy by £942m’ in 2013

BT contributed over nine hundred million pounds to Scotland's economy, according to new figures. Picture: TSPL
BT contributed over nine hundred million pounds to Scotland's economy, according to new figures. Picture: TSPL
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BT generated £942 million for the Scottish economy over the past year, according to an independent report.

The study, by Regeneris Consulting, also shows that the communications company supports nearly 12,000 jobs in Scotland through direct employment, its spending with contractors and suppliers, and the spending of employees.

The company spent more than £124 million with suppliers based in Scotland, according to the report, titled Social Study 2013 - The Economic Impact of BT in the United Kingdom.

7,000 staff, 4,800 more jobs

The report found that BT is responsible for the employment of 7,000 people - 6,240 direct employees and 760 contractors - with a total employment income of £233 million.

It also provides work for a further 4,800 people through BT’s spending with businesses that supply its equipment and services, and the spending of employees.

Brendan Dick, director of BT Scotland, said: “BT and its employees make a major contribution to the Scottish economy. They are a key part of its prosperity and economic wellbeing. BT is at the centre of every community and our day-to-day work benefits every local authority area right across the UK.

“I’m also well aware that BT people throughout Scotland really want to contribute in a positive way 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.

“But BT’s role in Scotland is more significant than even these massive figures suggest. In addition to the activities analysed in this comprehensive report, we are creating a high-speed fibre broadband network which will be essential to the future success of local businesses and households. The potential benefits to the region offered by that network are huge by any standards.”

BT ‘create £1 in every £70’

The overall beneficial financial impact of BT activities is expressed as a “Gross Value Added” (GVA) contribution which measures the value of all goods and services produced in an economy and combines wages and operating profits from companies and other organisations.

For Scotland, the BT GVA totalled £942 million.

The report found that BT committed more than £2.27 million to community, charity and voluntary programmes, spread around every Scottish community in 2012/13.

It also enabled more than 75% of its employees to work flexibly, with 411 homeworkers - 6% of the direct workforce.

Stephen Nicol, managing director of Regeneris Consulting, said: “Our analysis confirms the sheer scale and reach of BT’s economic contribution to the UK and its constituent local economies. BT makes a contribution to every town or city across the UK.

“At the UK level, £1 in every £70 of wealth created is attributable to BT: this is one of the single most important contributions to the UK economy by any firm.”

BT said it is bringing fibre broadband to 175 exchanges serving more than 1.4 million homes and business in Scotland as part of its £2.5 billion UK-wide commercial roll-out.

It is also working with two partnerships covering the Highlands and Islands and the rest of Scotland to bring high-speed broadband to the more remote communities, towns and villages.