At Specsavers we are passionate about giving back to and working with our local communities, wherever in the world we operate, and we support many local, national and international causes. We are also committed to supporting eyecare and hearing care projects in developing countries. In the last 12 months, we have donated more than £2.5m for charities and good causes globally.
We recognise our responsibility to pay the amount of tax legally due in the country in which that liability arises and to comply with the applicable rules and regulations in each of the countries in which we operate. Tax payments make a vital contribution to sustaining social welfare, enabling the government to fund policies that help people avoid economic hardship across all of our markets.
Last year, more than £69m of tax was paid on profits generated by Specsavers businesses to the governments of the countries in which we operate. In addition, we generate and collect a number of other taxes, such as employee and sales taxes. In 2015/16, the total amount contributed to tax authorities around the world as a consequence of Specsavers’ commercial activities exceeded £474m.
Our stores provide employment for more than 27,000 local people, all of whom have access to regular training and development, helping them to progress through Specsavers on their chosen career path. The same is true for the 4,000 people who are employed in our support offices and manufacturing and distribution sites around the world.