There appears to be something of a thought gap when it comes to Brexit and business. On the one hand, various politicians thought leaders and media outlets will tell you the disaster that will incur after leaving the EU – especially in a no-deal scenario.
But the other hand, held by businesses on the ground across the country, appears rather more relaxed and even lackadaisical with the whole prospect.
In a write-up last week we noted how many exporting SMEs are yet to factor in Brexit with just 34% of those asked in a far-reaching study saying they had a specific post-Brexit exporting plan.
And further research from Close Brothers Asset Finance suggests that there are specific sectors who aren’t overly concerned by leaving the EU at all and think it will have little impact on their operations.
More on those sectors later on.
The study, which surveyed 900 firms, found just 29% said Brexit would cause harm to their businesses and reorganising of the supply chain would be required.
Twenty per cent said they believed their businesses would actively benefit from leaving the European Union.
On the research, CEO at Close Brothers, Neil Davies commented that: “Looking at the figures, with 51% selecting the ‘neither’ option, it’s clear that the continued uncertainty means businesses have little idea of the impact a reorganisation will have.
“It’s not something they have ever had to deal with on this scale.”
So which sectors are worried, and which aren’t overly concerned at all?
As you can see from the table above, a high proportion of sectors are learning more towards thinking that Brexit will have little impact on their business – including print & packaging, wholesale, distribution, services and retail.
And as you’d likely expect, it’s the sectors which regularly do business on an international stage that are most concerned, such as transport, haulage, engineering, manufacturing and also wholesale & distribution – a sector that is least optimistic of Brexit delivering tangible benefits over major headaches.
“It clearly demonstrates that in the absence of certainty, businesses have taken it upon themselves to assess the impact leaving the EU will have on the supply chain which, for many businesses exposed to Europe, is critical,” concluded Davies.
Read more: Many exporting SMEs yet to factor in Brexit
“In the key sectors that have strong relationships in and with Europe, including engineering, manufacturing and transport, planning is advanced and above the national average of 47% who admitted they’d started their planning.”
But is the lack of apparent concern down to a lack of understanding of export markets and how they operate, or the misunderstanding of how closely tied Britain and the EU are as a trading block? Do businesses understand the complications of a no-deal Brexit?
If your firm needs advice and wants to ensure all angles are covered, whichever Brexit is delivered, you can talk to Go Exporting about our Brexit consultancy services.