George Osborne has labelled the Greek crisis as one of the biggest external economic risks to the British economy. He said that Brits living in Greece who receive payments from the department of work and pensions, as well as expats who get public sector pension payments, would continue to receive their money. He also claimed that the UK government would contact pensioners with Greek bank accounts to help them switch to non-Greek accounts. Furthermore, the Bank of England has warned that the situation could pose a risk to the UK’s financial system. But businesses have arguably felt the brunt of the crisis, with June seeing the FTSE 100’s worst monthly performance in three years – falling by 6.6 per cent. This is largely due to concerns about negotiations between Greece and eurozone leaders breaking down. With research in April highlighting that the euro had fallen nearly 12 per cent since January, combined with a looming Grexit, life will also be made tougher for exporters. After all, Greece supplied two per cent of the euro zone’s GDP in 2013. According to recent research, however, several UK companies could face the potential risk of going bust. Rosslyn Analytics’ team of data scientists used a cloud analytics platform to determine the commercial connections between British and Greek companies. The analysis of 160,628 Greek firms found that the UK is the eighth most at-risk country in the world when it came to the debt crisis. Read more about Greece:
It was determined that 70 companies in the UK are Greek-owned and if those businesses were to go bankrupt it could see Britain lose more than $727m. Of course, this does not come close to the $7.79bn of revenue that Rosslyn suggested would be lost in Cyprus, or the $3.67bn in Romania, $3.5bn in Turkey and $2.84bn in Russia. The three largest Greek-owned companies in the UK, based on declared turnover, are Hellenic Petroleum Cyprus, Guava International and OTE. The Greek crisis is a wake-up call for globally-minded business leaders, Hugh Cox, chief data officer of Rosslyn Analytics has suggested. “Most businesses have very little insight into who their suppliers and partners really are,” he said. “These 70 British businesses could at best have financial repercussions or at worst go bust at any moment. “Chances are, most of the companies that rely on their products or services have no idea of this risk, because they don’t know that they are Greek-owned.” He stressed, however, that this was only just the beginning. With China’s economy slowing and other European markets set to suffer from the euro zone crisis, companies need to have more visibility of suppliers, customers and partners to truly understand the impact of global economic situations on their business, and mitigate financial risks. “In today’s interconnected world, management teams must have complete visibility of a myriad of risks, including their financial exposure to markets that may be slowing down,” added Cox. By Shané Schutte
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