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UK tech sector growth slows as Brexit worries increase

(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/Yorkman)

Growth of the UK’s tech sector has seen a drop off caused by Brexit and the surrounding uncertainty, new research has found. 

The latest quarterly survey of UK technology sector companies by KPMG also blamed global trade conflicts for a slowdown in growth, but did note that most of the hiring and investment plans for this year remain in place for now.

The KPMG UK Tech Monitor Index says the country experienced a 52.4-point growth for Q4 last year. 50.0 is a no-change value. Comparing it to Q3, which has had a score of 54.0, shows ‘the slowest rate of tech sector business expansion since Q4 2015’.

It was also said that, as older projects come to a close, new ones aren’t as abundant, which means there is a ‘lack of new work’. For some companies, that was a signal to stop, or slow down, on hiring. Employment numbers have risen overall in Q4.

Despite the seemingly poor climate, capital expenditure plans remain strong. There is a ‘strong record’ of R&D spending.

“Our survey reveals that political uncertainty has dented client confidence contributing to a slowdown in growth at the end of last year,” said Bernard Brown, vice chair at KPMG UK.

“But, buoyant staff hiring and capital expenditure plans are still in place for 2019. This confidence is reflected in the statistic that almost 50% of UK tech firms intend to add jobs over the next year, whilst many traditional manufacturers are considering moving jobs offshore. This demonstrates the strength and resilience of the UK tech sector in the new digital economy.”

Image source: Shutterstock/Yorkman