Published on by Digitally Squared

The technology sector is reacting to the news that the UK public has voted to leave the EU. Several tech giants like Google and Facebook, many of which have large offices in Britain, have set up internal committees, trying to figure out what they will do following the decision. That includes mapping out companies’ potential tax obligations and where they would have to locate London-based staff members whose roles span the region.

Prior to the Referendum it was widely reported that Brexit would be a negative move for the sector. A survey from Juniper Research found that 65% of UK tech employees believe that Brexit will have a negative impact on the global tech industry. Further down the line, comments made following the victory for the leave campaign have suggested that, aside from the short-term volatility it will bring, firms need to keep an open mind about the impact it will have.

Work starts now

“Today, at techUK we start work with our members to map out this new future. There will be a long to-do list with many policy and regulatory issues requiring urgent action. Tech companies will need to come together and speak with one voice to ensure their needs are understood and acted upon. To succeed, the UK tech sector needs great people, great infrastructure, world-class science and research, unfettered access to global markets, and a world-class smart and predictable regulatory environment. Without the benefits of EU membership, the UK needs to be at its very best to succeed. That remains our purpose. To make the UK the best place in the world for tech.” as per Julian David, CEO of techUK. Taking the view that the tech sector needs to remain positive, despite the vote going against what the sector had hoped for.

Digital currency growth

While the uncertainty following the Leave vote has sent the pound plunging, digital currency Bitcoin is surging in value. Its price against the US Dollar rose as high as $1,000 in 2013 and while it has stabilised since that landmark valuation, it hit a two-and-a-half year high of nearly $775 on 17 June before cratering nearly 25% over the next week. Following the result the currency jumped past $650 just one day after it was at $550.

Uncertainty

Finally, “The UK tech industry has been in a strong position and the only limitations we’ve faced to do business has been our own ability. With the impending Brexit, there is now a high level of risk and uncertainty over our future and questions are being asked as to how will we be able to build on our success and further grow without the support of the EU.” as per Matt Hunt, CEO of app developer Apadmi Enterprise.

 

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