Start-ups urge Government to protect access to UK talent

A group of nearly 50 tech start-up representatives have signed an open letter to Prime Minister Theresa May urging her to protect access to tech talent once Brexit negotiations begin.

The letter, which was signed by founders and executives of Tech City Future 50 and alumni of the group, such as Deliveroo, says that the UK’s exit from the European Union could hamper their ability to hire the best talent or could deter these people from wanting to come and join, or set up, tech businesses in the UK.

As the signatories point out, the UK has become a ‘number one spot’ in Europe for tech start-ups, with 40 per cent of all European tech unicorns, which are firms valued at £1bn or more, being based here. Meanwhile, digital industries across the board are expanding at an extraordinary pace, creating jobs and contribution some £161bn in turnover to the economy.

Moreover, tech innovation has brought in new energy providers, more efficient banking and investment firms, cheaper travel and accessible education, to name just a few of the benefits the industry brings to the UK.

The letter goes on to say that if tech communities are no longer able to recruit from all 27 member states, many firms will see a slowdown in their business, meaning that the Government’s measures in recent years to encourage entrepreneurs to invest in the UK would be wasted.

It concludes by saying that, as tech company founders, the signatories want to work with the Government to find solutions to the digital industries’ need for international talent, which will allow British tech to continue to compete on the world stage.