Annual Report 2017

8. Cost of Sales and Directly Related Costs

The following costs have been included in the operating result:

in thousands of EUR

Notes

2017

2016

Direct materials

792,680

772,508

Employee costs

1,162,720

1,100,583

Occupancy costs

498,079

479,990

Marketing & publicity costs

177,952

162,798

Depreciation and impairments

13

117,055

110,069

Amortization and impairments

14,15

92,606

53,323

Distribution costs

65,809

68,472

Other costs

218,110

214,043

3,125,011

2,961,786

Occupancy costs include fixed and variable rent for stores, offices and other buildings under operating lease contracts of €398,566 (2016: €396,585).

The employee costs can be specified as follows:

in thousands of EUR

Notes

2017

2016

Salaries & wages

830,338

782,743

Social security

175,617

169,501

Pension costs - Defined benefit plans

28

4,434

3,520

Pension costs - Defined contribution plans

16,902

15,686

Share-based payments

30

11,274

15,303

Other employee-related costs

124,155

113,830

1,162,720

1,100,583

The average number of employees within the Group during 2017 (excluding the associates and joint ventures) in full-time equivalents was 31,802 (2016: 28,766). The increase in 2017 mainly relates to the acquisitions of Visilab and Tesco Opticians.