Despite the ongoing uncertainty surrounding Brexit over the past three years UK businesses remain attractive to overseas investors. According to Ben Bolt, partner with Springboard CF, the fundamentals of our economy are good and the current weakness of sterling provides a further stimulus to foreign investment.
Since May Springboard have advised on seven transactions including two cross-border sales to Swedish companies and one to a Nasdaq-listed company. With the pound trading at almost a two-year low against the euro and dollar, UK companies are increasingly becoming an appealing proposition to European and US investors.
Following the vote to leave the EU in June 2016, the underlying uncertainty surrounding Brexit has arguably been factored into the stock markets, as well as the value of sterling. The economy has held up well despite the doom-mongers predicting it would ‘fall over a cliff.’
Whilst some UK companies may have postponed investment decisions during this period, foreign investors are looking beyond the current uncertainty that has accompanied the unresolved Brexit negotiations. Among the key targets for them are our thriving tech and pharma sectors which contain many innovative young British businesses. Some of these are looking for additional funding to take them to the next stage of development, others become take-over targets.
There is clear evidence that Asia and the US are increasingly focusing on the opportunities here, with Japan and Singapore being particularly drawn to opportunities in the fintech and financial arenas.
Figures recently released by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport revealed that UK tech companies attracted foreign investment to the tune of £5.5 billion in the first seven months of this year, with US and Asian firms leading the way.
The UK continues to attract the attention of overseas investment funds which are looking to take advantage of the growth potential here. Whilst the Brexit deadline of October 31 is looming large on the horizon it is clear that our international neighbours will continue to adopt a long term view and look to do business with us – even if there is some economic turbulence along the way!