Despite Specsavers’ solid earnings last year, Dame Mary Perkins and her husband had their payout cut in half.
Perkins started the optical chain in 1984 and became Britain's first billionaire businesswoman. It was revealed she and her husband Doug had their dividend cut to £17.4m last year compared to £36.8m the year before in recently filed accounts.
Specsavers has around 1,800 stores in 10 countries in Europe and beyond, and in the year to February, it reported a 1.2 per cent sales increase to £673.7m, while group revenue rose to £2.18bn, an increase of 5.8 per cent from the year before.
The company is now run by John Perkins, the couple’s son.
Perkins was made a Dame in 2007, and her fortune is estimated to be worth more than £1bn.
Earlier this year, Specsavers’ application to trademark “should’ve” and “shouldve” for its slogan was approved in a surprise decision by the UK’s Intellectual Property Office.