FS Fives: Friday, June 24 *BREXIT SPECIAL*

Welcome to the latest FS Fives – FutureScot’s lunchtime round-up of Scottish digital news.

It is perhaps a little low-key to turn to an accountant, but in the midst of a rapidly tanking economy,  we hope an appropriately measured and calm reaction to all the sound and fury currently being whipped up in the aftermath of a Brexit vote might do us all some good.
According to Steve Williams – Practice Senior Partner, Scotland and Northern Ireland with Deloitte Scotland – Scotland is well-placed to weather the economic storms that face businesses across the country in the coming days, weeks, months, and possibly even years.
“Scotland, and the UK as a whole, is well positioned to deal with the outcome of the referendum. Our economy remains competitive, innovative and highly-skilled, whether it is in Europe or out. Scotland continues to be an excellent place to do business, with all the necessary attributes to compete and succeed in the global economy,” says Williams.
“The Scottish economy, for its part, is resilient and dynamic – over the last 24 months, in particular, we’ve seen some amazing businesses emerge from its entrepreneurial scene. I am confident there are more good stories to come in the next few years and businesses across the board will adapt to our new reality.”
Williams says Scotland’s food and drink, oil and gas, financial services and technology sectors will continue to be “world-leaders”, setting the benchmark for others across the globe and that they will remain important drivers of economic growth, irrespective of the political challenges we may face.
Let’s all hope so!

Second: Just yesterday, Scotland’s tech trade body ScotlandIS was celebrating becoming accredited by the European Commission Directorate for Enterprise and Industry, through its European Cluster Excellence Initiative. It became the first Scottish organisation to be accredited by the initiative and achieved a bronze award after a detailed interview process, which it went through with the help of Scottish Enterprise.
Just where that achievement stands now is anyone’s guess but Polly Purvis, ScotlandIS CEO, said: “Strong clusters promote economic growth, leveraging innovation and business potential to generate new employment opportunities, new products and services, new companies, new R&D activities and new patents.”

It seems appropriate to remind readers that just a few days ago, the chief executive of one of Scotland’s leading health informatics companies, Aridhia, made an impassioned plea at an Edinburgh tech conference for voters to realise the consequences of a LEAVE vote.
Chris Roche stood up at the Scot-Cloud 2016 conference at Dynamic Earth and warned that to leave the EU would leave companies like his “cut off at the knees”. Following a warning from Britain’s top academics this morning that there could be a serious brain drain in the wake of Brexit, we only hope that some workable solutions can be found to ensure Scotland’s burgeoning health technology scene – among the many, many others – continues to attract the funding and talent it needs to survive and thrive.

Scotland’s First Minister has also moved to reassure business that trade and business should “continue as normal” in the wake of the Brexit vote. In a statement that was released just before 1pm today by Bute House, the First Minister said: “We are determined that Scotland will continue now and in the future to be an attractive and a stable place to do business. Our resilience committee will meet later this afternoon to oversee these immediate actions.”
She said she was determined to keep Scotland’s place in the EU and the single market, added that the fact Scotland voted for remain but is unable to do so is “democratically unacceptable” and that a second Scottish independence referendum is now “on the table”. Batten down the hatches folks!

And finally…It wouldn’t be politics if there wasn’t a gaffe. You know who we’re talking about. His name begins with Trr…..