Start-Ups Want To Stay In The EU

The EU referendum date has been announced and will take place on Thursday 23rd June. So, for the next four months the debate over whether the UK should remain in, or leave, the European Union will dominate.

A survey published this week shows that the majority of UK start-ups want us to stay in the EU.

The survey was carried out by COADEC (the coalition for a digital economy). This is a non-profit group founded by tech entrepreneurs that campaigns for policies to support digital start-ups in the UK.

Coadec’s survey found that 81% want to remain in the EU.

(The sample size was 175, including 126 start-up founders, 26 start-up employees, 19 investors and 4 others (the others were excluded). The question asked was the same as the one on the referendum ballot paper itself. The respondents where self-selecting).


For those who said the UK should remain, the key issues were:

• Access to a large single market, with harmonised regulations

• Free movement of labour, giving access to a talented workforce

• Having a ‘seat at the table’

• Stability and security

For those who said the UK should leave, the key issues were: 

• Sovereignty

• Over-regulation and red tape


These results aren’t surprising. The UK’s start-up community is international in its outlook and in its composition. A high percentage of founders come to the UK from across Europe (and the world) to launch and grow their businesses. They look to the EU for talented staff to help them grow.  Another factor is these companies are under enormous pressure to find business-critical employees and both the need and mindset have to be focused on the widest possible talent pool.  As these owner/founders would see it, markets and channels need to be available, fluid, robust……and set to ‘green’! 

RWA’s start-up recruitment service looks beyond the home grown talent pool here in the UK and is often able to identify and shortlist candidates from the wider EU area.