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Brexit Dread Spreads Around London’s FinTech Scene

Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:49 PM
Rebecca Campbell
Last Updated March 4, 2021 4:49 PM

The U.K. government needs to provide a ‘Brexit Blueprint,’ according to London’s FinTech community, that embraces the single market access and financial services passporting, as dread mounts in light of the Brexit vote.

Innovate Finance recently conducted the survey of 100 member firms which looked at the fears surrounding London’s future as the capital for FinTech startups after the European Union referendum results. Currently, there are 66,000 people employed within the U.K.’s growing FinTech community, of which 30% are thought to come from the EU and overseas.

One survey participant said:

If the U.K. loses passporting and the seamless access to the European financial market that it has thus far enjoyed, both the finance and technology sectors will FLOOD out of London.

The cost of living here is already way too high…as a cash strapped startup, trying to hire talent on barebones salaries, any excuse to leave to Berlin, Paris, Stockholm, Amsterdam, or Lisbon is one that we’d jump at.

With Home Secretary Theresa May leading the way to become the next Conservative Prime Minister she has refused to offer any guarantees on the future rights of EU workers in the U.K., which is complicating matters further.

Professor Peter Hahn of the London Institute of Banking and Finance, said:

The uncertainty of foreigners’ residency implies that every bank & finance business in the UK needs to quickly survey its employee register and understand the nationalities of its employees.

Are some key people in the IT department German, Estonian, or Spanish? What about management? They may have been happy employees and they may be thinking about leaving. How replaceable are they?

Dun & Bradstreet recently moved to downgrade the U.K.’s risk rating from DB2a, which is on balance with the U.S., to DB2c, and believes that they may be more downward changes over the next weeks and months.

Featured image from Shutterstock.