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Advice and Information for Finance Professionals

Survey: Brexit Surprise Makes for Trickier Finance Planning

Lynne Sampson
Managing Editor

A few days ago, British Prime Minister Theresa May outlined her plan for taking the UK out of the European Union—the first of many steps in a process that is expected to take a couple of years. 

In the wake of the surprise referendum result, our European colleagues decided to conduct a survey of the business landscape—especially as it relates to finance directors, CFOs, and other leaders with finance responsibilities.

Many finance leaders admit that they were caught off guard by the Brexit outcome. 41% admit they did not expect a "Leave" result, and are now playing catch-up. 46% say their forward planning has since become more complex and uncertain. (Click the image at left to see the full infographic.)

Furthermore, most companies anticipate significant changes to the competitive landscape in the coming year. 59% expect there will be more M&A activity and consolidation. 50% see more companies struggling or going out of business.

Waiting is Not an Option

Yet despite the uncertainty, companies know they can’t afford to simply wait it out. CFOs are looking to invest strategically so they can stay ahead and find success.

Market disruption inevitably opens up new opportunities for strategic movers. 46% of finance leaders plan to invest in growth if they see a strong business case to do so. Only 32% are restricting spending to the bare essentials.

Decisions made in the coming year could have make-or-break implications for business, especially in the UK. Finance leaders are feeling the pressure—but they are ready to take ownership of a more strategic role in the organization, in order to meet the challenges ahead.

For the full survey results, download "Modern Finance: Stepping Into the Unknown."

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