Oh, my favourite subject right now !
So let me get to the point. I voted to remain. Not because I thought England couldn’t be successful in it’s own right, but because we’d have to wade through an awful time just to get near where we used to be. Don’t get me wrong, I could right essays on why I hated the EU, and how badly it’s managed, but it didn’t take a genius to work out that we were better off within it.
I have family that voted out, still in the belief that we have an Empire I suppose, and it’s been said that if you take all the older people who have died since the vote, we’d still be in. But we’re not, and we all have to deal in a very different market now.
So firstly, we’re not making money right now. We’re not losing it either, but the currency dive that happened immediately after the vote, wiped out our profits. We pay in US dollars for all our things we have made in the east, so we effectively had a massive price rise overnight. Now that’s ok if the general population is prepared to pay more for their goods, but it seems to me that the general population are surprised that they have too ! Prices have gone up for sure, but not enough. And everyone seems to want a salary increase, but from where ? We’ve steadied the ship, but we’re certainly not in a position to raise wages.
Consumers are buying less, tightening their belts in the Brexit confusion, and independent shops are slowly disappearing from our streets. It’s a perfect storm.
So what are we doing about it ? Well, lots actually. Of course we are investing heavily in new designs and concepts. You can’t afford not to, within your means of course. We’re also trying to buy differently from our suppliers. More of certain items to make bigger orders of one item.
We’ve looked into production in England of course, but sadly it just isn’t viable still. The prices are just mad and uncommercial, and the speed of manufacturing very slow and so far, not reliable. The idea of production coming back to this country has so far proved a nonsense.
Export is fine if you’re producing more of a commodity I guess, as England is now cheap to buy from, but for design, it’s harder. Either other countries want it or they don’t. The price, in many ways, isn’t the issue.
There are winners and losers of course, in any market, and we just have to produce the right thing for this market in order to be a winner. Not so easy, but possible.