Irish Online Accounting Software Provider to Review Expansion into UK Citing Euro’s Strength Against the Pound

Marc Dwywe big red cloud

Big Red Cloud CEO Mark O'Dwyer urges Theresa May to offer UK a second referendum and the suggests UK should “get down on their knees and ask Europe to take them back.”

Big Red Cloud are supplier of online accountancy software to the micro and small business market in Ireland and the UK.

The company now boasts a customer base that has reached 35K, the vast majority of which are Irish.

As yet, only 3% of the company’s sales are derived from the United Kingdom and while the company would like to boost their presence in the UK market the decline in the value of the Pound has seen the company take another look at their international expansion plans.

“We have been effected by fluctuations as we both buy and sell in the UK, plus we also make use of off-shore software development which is usually paid in dollars. And the exchange rate of the pound vs the dollar has seen the largest fall so we do find ourselves effected there,” says Big Red Cloud CEO Marc O'Dwyer.

With the Euro strengthening some 15% against the Pound since the EU referendum the realised Euro returns on UK sales has therefore taken a notable hit.

Dwyers says so far the company has not felt the need to pass the currency hit on to the customer but they have changed their offers accordingly to accommodate the changes.

Big Red Cloud have found it is costing more to promote their software in the UK with the current exchange rates.

And with some big-name analysts warning the Pound could par the Euro, the currency headache could get worse.

“We have actually taken a step back from marketing in the UK and increased our prices, we did have Big Red Cloud priced at a special offer to gain entry into the UK but we have now re-aligned this with the change in circumstances,” says O'Dwyer.

For Big Red Cloud, the referendum has muddied the waters with plans for expansion within the UK, and the company are currently reviewing this with Enterprise Ireland to see what decisions need to be taken.

O'Dwyer says:

“Before the referendum we were planning a big push into the UK and looking to increase staff numbers on the ground in the UK, the plans haven’t changed as such but we are reviewing them.

“Complications are too soon to say as the British exit strategy is still being formulated. However, if I had to give advice to Theresa May and her new Government I would tell her to take a second referendum and get down on your knees and ask Europe to take them back.”

This stance echoes other reports of inbound investment being put on hold by European companies in Pound Sterling Live's Brexit strategy series.

O'Dwyer's feeling is that there was an imbalance in the messages given leading up to the referendum, “promises were made which clearly can’t be implemented and people were duped.”

"We believe the majority of people assumed it was going to be a vote in favour to stay and didn’t bother to get out and vote as a result. We believe the UK are going to have a difficult number of years.”

Big Red Cloud will continue to monitor the government’s strategies ahead of Brexit and although plans for an expansion will continue, they will be taking further advice as to what markets to explore.

They may have to conduct a smaller marketing campaign than previously planned to counter any currency fluctuations, despite being the UK’s closest neighbours.