The potential threat of Brexit looms large for UK businesses who wait to find out if our international trade agreements will be lucrative. But here, Director of KBL Accounts, Kelly-Anne Byres, reveals that right now business is booming in Great Britain.
Entrepreneurs started new companies at a record pace of 80 an hour in 2016, according to recent data.
Research from StartUp Britain, a Government-backed national enterprise campaign, shows 342,927 new businesses were registered with Companies House between January and June, compared with 608,110 for the whole of 2015 - itself a record year.
And the prospects for 2017 look good - despite the threat of the Brexit effect.
The UK voted to leave the EU in a Referendum held on the 23rd June 2016. Since then there has been a very fraught few months as investors, businesses and the public try to make sense of what is going on.
Contrary to expectations, this turmoil failed to dampen small businesses’ appetite for global expansion, according to a study by Western Union Business Solutions.
Their research in the aftermath of the vote found small businesses are more upbeat about their international growth prospects than their domestic expansion.
Almost half (47.8%) believe they will see growth in international trade activity and only 5.5% think it will deteriorate. In contrast, only 39.3% are expecting a growth in domestic trade.
Of course, it’s difficult to work out at this stage what the definitive impact of Brexit on the UK economy will be. Commentators, experts and business owners vary in their opinions, often proving either far too pessimistic, or too optimistic.
The Conservatives arranged a pro-remain letter on which 36 FTSE 100 companies collaborated, while Leave EU co-ordinated a pro-Brexit letter signed by more than 200 SME owners.
There is no doubt that a Brexit will affect small businesses but to what extent depends largely on the outcome of negotiations.
And really, in order to understand the pathway ahead we need the government to outline our ‘exit’ and ensure we strike the best possible trade deals for the UK.
The biggest question among small business owners right now is: what will Brexit look like?
All we know for sure is that brand Britain still seems to resonate strongly with the rest of the world. And the appetite for our products, services, skills and expertise has not diminished yet.
Fingers crossed that it remains this way.
If you would like any help with financial planning for your business ahead of Brexit, give us a call today.