With the future of the UK’s relationship with Europe in a state of uncertainty, migration data has never been so key for the UK to renegotiate its relationship with Europe.
It is imperative that evidence on the international share of employment in fast growing and economically significant sectors like digital tech is published and brought to bear in the policymaking processes.
This report has shown that:
There is also evidence that some tech businesses in the UK start-up ecosystem have an even higher share of their workforce (from founders to tech professionals) that is international, with a particular emphasis on workers from the EU. Furthermore, these companies employ thousands of people and collectively turn over billions of pounds.
25 per cent of Founders and CEOs in Tech City UK’s online survey reported that over 75 per cent of the workers in their company was an EU national, while 5 per cent of Founders stated that over 75 per cent of workers in the company were from outside of the EU.
This indicates that changes to freedom of movement, and other migration policy – which may limit future flows of skilled digital tech workers from outside the UK – could have a disproportionate impact on tech companies.
Research from DueDil on founder nationality indicates that 21% of UK tech startups are founded by non-UK nationals, of which 9% were founded by EU nationals.
Research on non-EEA Tier 1 entrepreneurs shows the positive economic and labour market contributions of founders and owners under Tier 1 of the UK’s Points Based System (see Appendix 2) and the impact of these migrants beyond the labour market.
The Department of Business Innovation and Skills’ report on the economic impact of Tier 1 entrepreneurs shows that the 1,580 sample of companies (of 13,746 business identified through Home Office Management Data) run by Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa holders employ just under 10,000 people, and collectively turn over £1.45 billion.