UK tech industry finds reasons for optimism amidst Brexit despondency

By John Glenday | Reporter

July 13, 2016 | 2 min read

The UK’s tech industry has begun finding its footing following Britain’s decision to depart the European Union, according to a new report published by Tech City UK.

Whilst the tone of the piece, which canvassed opinions from 1,200 tech entrepreneurs, is one of general despondency the likelihood of worst case scenarios breaking seems to be receding with some even sensing opportunities.

Of those quizzed some 74 per cent thought the economy would now deteriorate with 51 per cent fearful that it could now become harder to recruit and retain staff. Similarly just shy of a quarter of respondents had scaled back growth plans and 31 per cent would now slow recruitment.

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Most are also keen to maintain as many links with the continent as possible with 70 per cent urging ministers to make it clear that UK residents can continue to live and work in the UK and 85 per cent demanding Britain remain a member of the single market.

On the other side of the coin however some employers see a chance to improve the attractiveness of Britain internationally by cutting business rates, with 79 per cent calling for a relaxation of visa rules to allow global talent easier access.

Tech City chief Gerard Grech crystallised these views by stating that ‘there are unexpected upsides and very real opportunities’ following the vote.

A fall in the value of the pound is also thought to have stimulated investment interest from abroad with KKR stumping up £50m for security firm Darktrace, currency exchange Revolut picking up £8m and Festicket backed by close to £5m in recent days.

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