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Brexit... the effect on a British business

in-or-outThere is so much speculation about what leaving the EU will do to the UK. It seems like there is a lot of people who have little or no experience of the way industry works making wild statements about life after brexit.

Here is what we know from running Unicycle.com in the UK…

Yesterday we spent over an hour dealing with a parcel being sent to Norway... yes just one parcel! Ok, this was not a good one, but not unusual. Processing packages to the UK or any country within the EU takes only minutes.

Delivery to someone in Norway or Switzerland, or even Jersey is often problematic as you are having to deal with customs documents, identification rules and sometimes extra charges at the delivery end. Packages going within the EU don’t even require an invoice, no messing with taxes and deliveries are very rarely problematic.

Regulations… yes the EU produces lots of regulations and laws. These are generally to do with business. As a business we come across these all the time. I cannot think of a single one that is negative to our business. The regulations are just setting out the terms of business and rules for life. Should we have the working time directive? Yes of course! Should we have a common specification our products? Yes of course! I will not say they are all perfect, but the vast majority of these rules and regulations are for the good of everyone and I am happy to have a machine in Europe that we have some control over rather than at the whim of a UK parliament that due to our electoral process is always short termist and claim mandate for everything they do, even though it is a small majority of the country voted for them and more than often they don't even know their policies.

Tariffs… yes we know about them. I don’t think most people who I have heard speaking about them really know what they are! We have to know all our tariff codes for our products, their rates and categories.   Tariffs throughout the world change and this can change the cost of imported and exported products – both up and down. We are not some faceless individuals who magically do this… we work hard to understand the costs implications of each code/category change… the old saying “time is money”. The EU currently keeps these stable and sensible.

Should we leave and not have common codes to Europe, our work will be dramatically increased trying to control the cost of the items we sell.

This all tells me that the experts who are saying that the UK will suffer decline of between 6.3 and 9.5% of GDP within 12 months are probably right…

Today I am paying for our next container from Taiwan and due to the current dive in the exchange rate of the pound the cost has gone up by 10% since the last container.  This in gross terms will be between 20% and 25% increase in product cost… so sorry guys prices  are going to have to go up.  Thank you BREXIT! :-(


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