The Church of England, the centuries-old U.K. protestant church, has been investing millions of pounds into Google despite the controversy surrounding reports that the tech multinational avoids paying tax.
Alphabet Inc., Google's parent company – is listed in the church's annual Top 20 Most Valuable Equity Holdings. Google was accused earlier this year of tax avoidance in the U.K.
The Church of England, one of the largest charitable givers in the U.K., had previously stated that it would confront companies that are accused of tax avoidance, reported U.K. newspaper The Times. In 2011, the church's investment in Google was £15.7 million ($22.5 million), according to The Times.
The church also invests in pharmaceuticals such as AstraZeneca and GlaxoSmithKline, as well as oil giant BP, according to its annual report – interestingly, the Archbishop of Canterbury was an oilman in his previous life before turning to religion.
The Church of England released its annual report Monday, which showed that its total return on investments in 2015 was 8.2 percent, exceeding their long-term target rate by 2 percent.
After taking account of expenditure, the fund grew from £2.4 billion at the start of 1995 to £7 billion at the end of 2015.