Cleaning & FM industry reacts to EU referendum result


On Friday 24th June the world woke up to find that Britain had voted to leave the EU, and hours later David Cameron announced that he would be stepping down as Prime Minister. Cleaning Matters brings you the reaction from the cleaning industry.

The British Cleaning Council (BCC)

After months of campaigning the British people decided last Thursday that the United Kingdom should leave the EU. The British Cleaning Council took the decision some months ago to remain neutral, and that is still the case now we know the result.

However, with so much political and economic uncertainty around it’s important to reiterate that the BCC remains committed to its core values and will continue to champion the UK cleaning industry at every opportunity.

Whatever the outcome of the Brexit negotiations, Europe remains a very important market for the UK cleaning industry, and every effort should be made to make the transition to a non EU state as smooth as possible.

There are many EU nationals working in the UK cleaning industry and their hard work and commitment is extremely important for the buoyancy of the industry. The UK cleaning industry also has strong links to partners in Europe, and we are determined to keep those links strong, and we will be extending a very warm welcome to visitors from across Europe at next year’s Cleaning Show at the Excel Arena.

Dianna Steinbach, director EMEA Services, ISSA, the worldwide cleaning industry association

It is really too early to comment. However what I can say is that our industry is global and necessarily it has found ways to weather many economic situations in the past. It will prevail in this one as well, once the dust settles and the impact has been made clear.

At ISSA we continue to be committed to working within the UK as well as across Europe. The business leaders I have met so far in the UK are smart, savvy and entrepreneurial. I trust they will put that to good use in the years to come to continue to grow their businesses and lead the market.

Ray Perry, Chief Executive at BIFM (The British Institute of Facilities Management)

The decision of the EU referendum is an historic one, and we will not know the full impact or meaning of this for years to come. It does immediately create a period of uncertainty for the UK economy and the facilities management services that supply it.
The government and supporting organisations must get to grips with the task swiftly, putting partisan politics aside to lead us through any short-term volatility towards a stronger and more stable position. We need to focus on market confidence and stability.
The negotiation period, when Article 50 is invoked, provides an opportunity for our members to understand, adjust to and make the most of the new environment that this decision will create.
Our immediate priority is to canvas the views of our members and the profession, to understand their position. Doing so will provide us with clear and valid data to be able to respond and support those operating within the sector.

Neil Murray, regional chairman, Sodexo UK & Ireland

As a global company, which operates within 22 EU member states, we would have preferred for the UK to stay part of the EU. However, we do not believe leaving the EU will have a major impact on our business.

Sodexo has operated in the UK since 1988 and employs 34,000 people across the region. As a services company, most of our client relationships operate on a market by market level. We are a local player in the UK and work with local suppliers and local employees.

The UK is the first country to decide to leave the EU, so it is unclear how this will take effect. However, we remain confident in the sustainable growth of Sodexo across all our geographies and it will continue to be business as usual in the UK.

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