Report: 'Brexit' may hold dire ramifications for gaming industry

Financial markets exploded in chaos after the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union. The gaming industry is one of many likely to be affected.


Following a referendum vote yesterday, 51.9 percent of the United Kingdom decided in favor of exiting the European Union. The result has yet to be ratified by parliament, but the fallout has already begun.

One of the most major ramifications of "Brexit" (a portmanteau of "Britain" and "exit") has been concern regarding the financial health of both the UK and the EU"When the pound dropped to 30-year lows as the results came in and British stocks got pounded, it was no surprise when Wall Street tumbled more than 500 points right after the opening bell Friday morning," per CNN's Doug Criss.

Other world economies will feel tremors as the pound continues to plummet, but families and businesses on the other side of the Atlantic will get hit the hardest—including game developers and publishers. Game Informer editor Mike Futter published a report on Brexit's high-level points and what they could mean for the games business.

"Should the non-binding referendum vote become fact, it will have profound negative impact on the UK's video game industry," he wrote. "The industry there supports more than 2,000 companies, supporting more than 18,000 jobs."

Futter got comments from Ukie, a nonprofit organization dedicated to making and publishing games in the UK. According to Ukie head of policy and public affairs Theo Blackwell, "Issues that will be particularly pertinent to the UK games industry in the coming months, and that Ukie will be working hard to fully represent our sector on, include securing access to overseas talent, ensuring we have the right investment in skilling up our homegrown talent, the continuation of the Video Games Tax Relief, and access to funding."

Other pundits and businesspeople in the UK are well aware that even the most thorough planning could be for naught. "It is too early to say with any detail at this very early stage, but we can say given the above that over time there are likely to be a wide number of legal changes affecting day to day business for digital entertainment and tech companies ranging from employment to intellectual property matters," said attorney Jas Purewal of Purewal & Partners. "This in turn is likely to mean changes to the business landscape."

You can read Futter's full report on Game Informer.

Long Reads Editor

David L. Craddock writes fiction, nonfiction, and grocery lists. He is the author of the Stay Awhile and Listen series, and the Gairden Chronicles series of fantasy novels for young adults. Outside of writing, he enjoys playing Mario, Zelda, and Dark Souls games, and will be happy to discuss at length the myriad reasons why Dark Souls 2 is the best in the series. Follow him online at and @davidlcraddock.

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