Corporate Governance


Modern Slavery Statement

As a leading restaurant chain, Big Table Group is committed to ensuring that our supply chain and own operations take a robust stance in the prevention of slavery and human trafficking. We continue to work with our suppliers to strengthen our supply chain due diligence in social, environmental and ethical standards whilst recognising that many may need practical help and support in implementing these.

BTG’s Modern Slavery statement sets out the steps we have taken in understanding all potential modern slavery risks and ensuring that there is no slavery or human trafficking in our business or supply chains.

Structure and Supply Chains

Big Table Group is one of the largest casual dining companies in the UK employing over 4,000 people and serving millions of meals at more than 150 locations. It is a parent business to three main operating companies: Bella Italia, Café Rouge, and Las Iguanas.

We have a centralised procurement team who work with 100 suppliers and with them we have established strong relationships based on trust and transparency.

Our aim is to build industry-leading supply chain assurance that is resilient to any potential risks and supports us to be vigilant in all parts of our business. To this end, we require our direct suppliers to work closely with their suppliers, distributors, agents and producers to meet this aim.

Policies

Ethical Trading

All direct suppliers and their supply chains must comply with relevant EU and UK legislation as a minimum including the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and the following:

  • The Data Protection Act 1998
  • The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act 1977
  • The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002
  • United Nations (UN) Universal Declaration of Human Rights
  • The International Labour Organisation (ILO)
  • The Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) whose Base Code is drawn from the scope and standards defined by the UN and ILO

In addition to this, BTG has developed its own Ethical Trading Policy that sets out company policies and practices to ensure our business and supply chain practices are free from slavery and human trafficking.

Our policy covers 14 key principles including prohibition of slavery and human trafficking, safe and hygienic working conditions and payment of a fair wage. All direct suppliers are required to show compliance with this Policy and to provide evidence of continuous improvement in worker welfare.

Suppliers must have their own Codes of Conduct, ethical trading policies and management systems to demonstrate their approach to prevent modern slavery and human trafficking.

All first tier suppliers are required to be SEDEX members and to provide due diligence on ethical trading including self assessment, third party audits and corrective action of non-compliances on request from BTG. BTG is also a SEDEX member that allows us to access information on suppliers including latest audits undertaken and corrective action reports at any given time. Currently this is carried out on a quarterly basis.

Whistleblowing

Big Table Group encourages its employees to report in confidence any concerns relating to any part of the organisation. This will extend to suppliers and other business partners and specifically include any risk of slavery or human trafficking. Employee Code of

Conduct

Big Table Group has employment policies where we make clear to our employees the actions and behaviour which are expected of them whilst at work and through the course of their duties and responsibilities. We strive to maintain the highest standards of employee conduct and ethical behaviour in all business activities including when operating and managing our supply chain abroad.

Anti-Bribery

Big Table Group complies with the Anti-Bribery Act 2010. It does not tolerate any form of bribery by or of its employees, agents or any person acting on our behalf.

Recruitment and Selection

Restaurant Operations

In our own operations, BTG carefully selects recruitment partners to ensure they source new employees in a manner that is legally compliant and ethical. Approved partners are reviewed on a regular basis.

Eligibility and Right to Work checks are carried out on all our team members prior to starting employment with BTG.

On behalf of our operating companies, the procurement team approve new suppliers only after a rigorous assessment of their technical capabilities and their ethical credentials. Any business partners including suppliers who are deemed to be unsuitable or do not meet our requirements are not used across the Group.

Supply Chain

Over the last year, we have risk mapped first tier food and drink suppliers and identified those who have been deemed high risk based on type of products supplied and the geographic location of source. These suppliers have been required to submit their own ethical trading policies and procedures and evidence of management systems to prevent modern slavery and human trafficking.

The procurement team approve new suppliers only after a rigorous assessment of their technical capabilities and their ethical credentials. Anti-slavery requirements are included in our contractual Terms and Conditions.

Governance

All policies are developed by the relevant issue experts and responsibility is shared by the Group Directors. All policies are approved by the Chief Financial Officer and will undergo annual reviews to assess their effectiveness going into the future.

Future commitments

  • We will initiate further training for all relevant staff to ensure they are fully aware of their responsibilities in complying with the Modern Slavery Act and what steps they should take if any incident of modern slavery is identified.
  • All supplier audits will include requirements for the provision of ethical trading policies and management systems for delivering compliance with legislation and BTG’s Ethical Trading policy.
  • Risk mapping of suppliers will be extended to all first tier suppliers including those working in property and marketing sectors. We will develop transparent monitoring and reporting systems to demonstrate how effective we have been to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in any part of our business including key performance indicators (KPIs) as follows:
  • % of suppliers who have been audited against ethical trading requirements.
  • % of suppliers approved.
  • % of suppliers who have had to adopt corrective action for any legislative or company requirements.
  • We will explore opportunities to work with charities that support people who have been victims of modern slavery and enable them to be re-employed legitimately.

This statement is made pursuant to section 54 (1) “Transparency in Supply Chains’ clause of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and constitutes BTG’s modern slavery and human trafficking statement for the financial year ending May 2017.

Tax Strategy

Introduction

The tax strategy in Big Table Group Group Limited and all subsidiary companies (“BTG” and “the Company”) has been agreed and approved by the Board of Directors. BTG is a UK registered trading company and pays its tax in the UK. BTG is committed to doing business responsibly and takes all matters including those involving tax seriously. BTG ensures that all areas relating to taxation are continually reviewed throughout each year.

Approach to Tax Compliance Reporting and Tax Planning

Tax compliance and reporting is of high priority across the Company. Internal and external deadlines and processes are monitored and reviewed to ensure compliance.

BTG complies with all UK taxation rules and regulations. The Company utilises reliefs, deductions and allowances in line with UK rules and regulations.

Risk Management and Governance Arrangements

BTG employs a dedicated internal tax resource to manage its fiscal obligations as well as professional external advisers. The Board, senior management team and senior accounting officers are updated across the year in relation to all aspects of taxation and formal reporting deadlines. All external audits are adhered to.

Risk Acceptance

BTG monitors risk across the year and takes all necessary steps to ensure compliance with UK regulations. Formal procedures are entered into with HMRC where appropriate.

BTG’s Relationship with HMRC

BTG engages fully in annual business reviews and is committed to maintaining an open, honest and constructive dialogue with HMRC. When submitting tax returns to HMRC, BTG is committed to providing a full relevant disclosure and to file within statutory deadlines. When corresponding with HMRC, BTG commits to responding in a timely manner on a clear basis. BTG will work together with HMRC to resolve any disputed is a timely and transparent manner.

Tipping and Service

All customer cash tips and service charges are kept by restaarant employees in full. When tips or service charge are paid for by a credit card or debit card, we take a small 2.5% administration charge to cover bank fees, before distributing the remainder in full to our employees. Tips and service charges are paid in full in addition to the National Minimum Wage and National Living Wage. In practice, this means for every £1 in tips given on a credit card, our teams will keep 97.5p and 2.5p will cover credit card fees and administration costs.

Any tips paid in cash are retained by the individual waiter. They may or may not have arrangements in place to share these tips with other employees in the restaurant and staff in the restaurant kitchen. It is the responsibility of those receiving cash tips to declare the income for tax purposes to HM Revenue & Customs. The company does not participate in any aspect of cash tips.

Big Table Group and all of its restaurant businesses fully support the British Hospitality Association (BHA) voluntary code of best practice on service charges and tips. More details of this code can be found on the BHA website.

In addition to tips, our employees benefit from 50% Employee Discount across all Big Table Brands on food and drink, Team Meals whilst on duty, savings on 100s of retailers and activities through our Employee Advantages Scheme, along with numerous incentives for our teams to benefit from.

GENERAL ENQUIRIES
online.enquiries@bigtablegroup.com
020 7121 3200
PRESS & MEDIA ENQUIRIES
bigtablegroup@fsc.uk.com
020 3567 5800