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Dragons’ Den host Evan Davis talks business and Brexit


Dragons’ Den presenter and economist Evan Davis says nobody really knows what direction business after Brexit will go and many are still waiting to see what Brexit actually means.

In a radio interview with New Zealand-based NewstalkZB, Davis spoke extensively on Britain’s business uncertainty post-Brexit.

The famed presenter and host of predominantly startup and SME business investment programme Dragons’ Den, the first question put to Davis was; ‘Is Britain an entrepreneurial country’?

“Probably not enough. Where we don’t seem to do so well is building those businesses up to £100 billion values. We create great businesses and then they get sold off.

“There seems to be some gap where we struggle to build up the giant.

“But I will say this. London now is seen as a hub of a lot of entrepreneurial activity, particularly around FinTech because we have the finance. It’s a great place to do business.

Business after Brexit

“Nobody knows how far or in what direction it (business) will change.

“The good news for entrepreneurs with Brexit is that Britain can become more nimble. We can change our rules on driverless car testing and all sorts of things.

“The bad news would be on migration. The degree to which Brexit represented a vote against easy come and go policies. If businesses are trying to get together a group of international staff, that might be a problem.

Read more: UK SMEs planning to increase European exports despite Brexit

“And then, of course, we all know in business psychology is important. There’s a feeling among some Europeans that ‘we’re not welcome’. It’s a sort of visceral thing ahead of a rational thing.

“But we’re all agog to see what Brexit actually means!

“What has happened is we’ve encountered quite a lot of difficult problems, including the Irish border problem.

“Britain voted to be more of a nation and set its own rights to set its own product regulations and tariffs and taxes and no border, but then at the same time, we’ve decided we absolutely don’t want a border (in Ireland).

“We’re not much closer to solving the conundrum.

“The British government view and Brexiteer argument was let’s do it (go out and secure trade deals).“

Davis then concluded by noting that, no matter how much lamb and vino could be traded between New Zealand and the UK, it wouldn’t account for the potential lost trade with the EU.

“For some reason, you seem to do a lot more trade with those close to you…”

Listen to the full interview below.

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