Businesses Await Referendum Outcome as Scotland Heads to the Independence Polls

- Leadership - Sep 18, 2014

Companies with activity or interest in Scotland will discover whether it’s business as usual or time to adjust as today the country’s population decides whether to remain a part of the United Kingdom.

The result of the vote is expected to become clear in the early hours of Friday morning, with opinion polls indicating a tight race to the finish, although even those conducting them admit they may be almost entirely worthless as a gauge of the real outcome.

For businesses the result will doubtlessly delight some and worry others, for big names such as BP and the Royal Bank of Scotland have expressed their doubts over what an independent Scotland would deliver both to their own companies but also Scotland as a whole.

In turn those supporting the yes campaign have accused large companies and politicians of scaremongering tactics.

In the world of small business, a study of 500 SMEs conducted by accountancy software specialist Clear Books found that 68 percent of these believe that Scottish small and medium enterprises would suffer if independence were to be won. Around 45 percent felt that SMEs in England and Wales would also see negative effects.

However, less than half of Scottish SMEs surveyed (48 percent), believe that Scottish SMEs would be impacted negatively.

With an enormous turnout expected and many a silent voter to declare their position, businesses could be made to wait until the final declaration to discover what lies ahead. 

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