Businesses react to the UK’s vote to leave the European Union

Devine 52Jim Duffy, CEO, Entrepreneurial Spark said,

“True entrepreneurs are opportunity hungry and with change comes that opportunity. In our global economy, UK businesses are trading across the world, not just in Europe, and exiting the EU is unlikely to reduce trading opportunities in the long term. Entrepreneurs will simply just get on with it and what’s important today is that they continue to focus on planning to ensure that they can navigate any turbulence in the coming days and weeks, while exploiting bigger opportunities in the months and years to come.

We’re told that the UK now has full control of its future, therefore what better place for start-ups to thrive? Time will tell. However, our businesses constantly tell us of the pain caused by EU-driven red tape, so this removal, albeit in a lapsed time, will be welcomed by entrepreneurs across the country – an issue we’ve campaigned hard for over the past four years as the world’s largest free business accelerator.

Today’s news also opens huge opportunities for the SNP to relook at Scotland’s position in the wider UK, being entrepreneurial in its approach to a further independence referendum. The mind boggles where this could stop with renewed calls for a united Ireland and the Prime Minister expediting his exit, but, speaking from an entrepreneurial mindset perspective and sensing opportunity, there’s scope for a variety of stakeholders to seize the initiative.”

LHS_9394bRuss Shaw, founder of Tech London Advocates.
“Today’s result is not what the London tech sector wanted to see, but we will continue our efforts to build London tech and continue on our journey to make London a world-leading tech hub.  Digital and tech entrepreneurship has really taken hold in London, and we will continue to nurture this in the coming months and years.  During this week, which is also London Technology Week, Tech London Advocates has been focusing on the importance of diversity in tech, and after this result, the London tech sector will continue to celebrate and welcome talent from London, the UK, the European Union and from around the world.”
Jason KitcatJason Kitcat, Head of Policy & Public Affairs at Crunch:
“We hope that the government will move quickly following this result to set out its exit plans to minimise uncertainty for the business community. At the heart of negotiations to leave the EU must be how the growth and productivity of freelancers, contractors, the self employed and entrepreneurs will be supported in the new settlement.”
Michael_Kent (10 of 24)Michael Kent, CEO & Founder of Azimo

“We’re disappointed that the British electorate has decided to leave the European Union. Here at Azimo we passionately believe that the world needs less borders not more.

As we’ve said before, this is also a blow to London’s financial services industry: many companies here depend on both EU market access and the ability and legal right to passport their services to the rest of Europe. I anticipate that we’ll see many finance players moving some, or potentially all, operations to elsewhere in Europe. Frankfurt, Amsterdam and Dublin are all obvious candidates.

As an entrepreneur, the most difficult part about this entire debate and vote has been the uncertainty it has created. Even now that we know that the final decision is to “Leave” the European Union, we do not know how this is going to evolve in the next few months and it could even take years. We’re not worried about our business. We’re in a unique position as a well funded start-up to be able to respond to changing market conditions quickly and easily. The good news is that the FinTech industry is thriving across the whole of Europe at the moment, should London’s position as the heart of European FinTech now change as a result of this vote. In the meantime, we’ll continue to focus on doing what we do best: delivering better faster and lower-cost money transfers to help our hardworking customers create a better life for themselves and the world around them.”

Images for FreeAgent in Edinburgh. FreeAgent, accounting software simplified. Pictured: Ed Molyneux Pictures are free first use only. © Helen Pugh Photography 07837 533 051

Ed Molyneux, CEO and co-founder of FreeAgent said:

“This result is a big blow to the UK’s micro-business sector and I think that a lot of people will be very concerned about what the future will hold.“It was clear during the run up to the referendum that the overwhelming majority of micro-business owners and freelancers were in favour of the UK remaining in the EU, and that they did not think a ‘Brexit’ would be beneficial for their own businesses or the economy in general.“The ramifications of leaving the EU are going to be huge – especially for small businesses who sell products and services worldwide, rather than just domestically. And we now look set for a lengthy period of uncertainty while negotiations presumably take place over the terms of the UK’s exit.

“I would therefore urge the government to be as swift as possible in providing updates about how these discussions are progressing, and give every business owners in the UK clear, up-to-date information about what the effects of Brexit will be on important issues such as trade and tax. The last thing the business sector needs is to be kept in the dark.”

We’ll be updating this article throughout the day with your views on the UK leaving the EU and the effect on UK Business.  Get in touch with@r_mjones or to let us know your views on the leave vote.