Sean Haley, Chairman of Sodexo UK and Ireland, comments on the Group’s full-year 2021 results and the contribution of the United Kingdom and Ireland to reported global half-fiscal year revenue growth of 18.1 per cent.
Sodexo UK & Ireland has had a strong year and some significant successes despite trading still below pre-pandemic levels.
We have seen a steady flow of contract wins, particularly in areas hit hardest by lockdown, such as schools and our sports and leisure business, Sodexo Live! We won prestigious new business with Oundle School and extended our contract in the newly refurbished Hampden Park, the home of Scottish football. We were genuinely delighted this summer to help the government with test events and opening back up the experiences that we know people love – Royal Ascot, Henley Royal Regatta and the Chelsea Flower Show.
We were also proud to continue supporting the Government’s ongoing response to Covid-19 and are now the largest provider of test centres in the UK and operate the only network of assisted testers in England and Scotland, providing tests for those who have mobility and disability issues, and at events such as the G7 and the forthcoming COP26.
Our financial results are one indicator of our businesses’ health, but our social impact is just as significant. And we’ve made great progress on our social impact pledges.
What stands out for me is how we have reduced food waste significantly using WasteWatch powered by Leanpath. This programme is now at 229 client sites and has prevented over 280 tonnes of food waste – more than 500,000 meals. Sodexo UK & Ireland has also set an ambitious and comprehensive roadmap to net zero by 2045. We’ve committed to being carbon neutral in our direct operations by 2025 and to reduce carbon emissions by 55% by 2030 across all three scopes, which has been validated by the Science Based Target initiative (SBTi).
However, our approach is about using our scale and position to make business decisions that help not only our people, but the communities in which we operate. We’ve now gifted more than one million pounds of our apprenticeship levy and are one of the first companies to capture and analyse employee demographics as recommended by the Social Mobility Commission and Purpose Coalition. This year, we became the first hospitality and FM company to publish ethnicity pay gap data.
All this is thanks to the hard work, commitment and professionalism of our people, and the support of our valued clients, suppliers, and partners. We know it has been a challenging time for them too. We start our new financial year focused on how we will continue to adapt and grow our business whilst ensuring we are leading the way to improve quality of life for society and our planet.
Everyone at Sodexo is committed to this journey.