Experts Comment: What’s Next For Businesses, After The 2024 Elections?

The elections have just passed and many are waiting in anticipation to see what changes will take place going forward. The Labour party’s victory introduces new changes, especially in planning reform and energy policy.

“It’s time for Kier Starmer to put his money where his mouth is. The whole premise of Labour’s manifesto was “kickstarting economic growth” but what business leaders need to see now is a genuine plan for how the new Labour administration will achieve this. We need a growth strategy that business leaders can get behind,” UK tech CEO, Michael Queenan explained.


5 Things Business Leaders Now Need From A Labour Government


Michael Queenan from Nephos Technologies breaks down 5 important things leaders in business expect from the Labour government as they get settled into their new roles.


1. Explain their growth strategy – The UK hasn’t seen any substantial growth since before COVID and with inflation still high, growing the economy isn’t going to be an easy task. Labour now needs to stop throwing the word around and come up with a genuine growth strategy that business leaders can get behind.

2. Don’t forget small mainstream businesses – The only business-focused policies published in the Labour manifesto were initiatives around AI and green tech, rather than supporting the ‘run of the mill’ businesses. There was no reference to the death of the high street and how it impacts the small, local businesses that once underpinned our economy. The businesses that have kept the country afloat are now being left in the dust.

3. Negotiate trade agreements with the EU fast – Brexit has made it very difficult for any UK business to do foreign trade with the EU. The new Labour government needs to establish a trade agreement quickly to ease this burden on UK businesses.

4. Provide incentives for entrepreneurs – The UK currently has little to offer start-ups – taxes are high, regulations are restricting and we don’t have skills that aren’t available elsewhere in the world for a lot less. The world is so globalised now that a lot of British businesses do more business outside of the UK than within it, so entrepreneurs don’t need to be tied to their home country. If we’re really going to achieve growth, we need to offer incentives to entrepreneurs that make the UK a desirable place to run a business.

5. Formulate a policy on immigration for skills – The UK relies heavily on immigrant workers so it is very short-sighted to be talking about net zero immigration. A policy that recognises that need and manages the flow of immigration in accordance is essential.


What Do Experts And Businesses Forecast?


Business leaders and experts have shared their thoughts on what they think happens next, now that elections have ended:


Our Experts:


Todd Davison, MD, Purbeck Insurance Services
Peter Ahye, CEO, Hexagon Consultant
Hans-Christian “Gigi” Zapell, CEO and Founder, IMMO
Teresa Payne, Managing Partner, Parfitt Cresswell
Christophe Williams, CEO, Naked Energy
Jonathan Patrick, CEO, Consultant Connect
Asif Ghafoor, CEO, Be.EV
Hayley Knight, Co-founder & Communications Director, BE YELLOW
Lena Hackeloer, CEO and Founder, Brite Payments
Scott Dawson, Head of Sales and Strategic Partnerships, DECTA


Todd Davison, MD, Purbeck Insurance Services



“We want to see Labour prioritising small business growth and funding. Access to finance from the larger banks for SMEs can be difficult and precious time can be wasted in pursuit of these facilities. Decisions by the big banks need to be expedited for SMEs so that they have the opportunity to explore other avenues if necessary.

“Reforms to the British Business Bank could make access to capital easier, particularly if the BBB increases links with alternative finance providers. At Purbeck, we see most applications for personal guarantee insurance coming from SMEs that have secured loans from alternative lenders.

“Also, knowing that cashflow can sometimes fluctuate, prior to taking finance, SMEs need to check what forbearance/assistance a lender would be able to provide in order to help manage cashflow and repayment obligations. Any policies on interest only repayments, repayment holidays and the fees/charges in these circumstances, should be provided up front by lenders in the application process.

“Fundamentally, closer liaison is needed between the new Government and the lending community to help SMEs overcome the barriers to finance.

“At the same time, Labour needs to recognise that navigating the myriad of SME finance options can be daunting. Improved awareness and education is needed on how different loan facilities work and what can be done to reduce the risk of personal guarantees such as sharing the guarantee or using personal guarantee insurance.

“As we await the outcome of the FCA’s review into small business lending practices, small business owners can alleviate concerns surrounding personal guarantee backed loans and instead view them as avenues for growth and opportunity.”


Peter Ahye, CEO, Hexagon Consultants



“The UK’s 2024 general election outcome has implications for both start-up businesses and investors. There are several things for business owners of start-ups to consider following this news.

“Firstly, whilst the Labour Party’s victory was expected, immediate policy changes are unlikely. Proposals from the party’s manifesto will undergo rigorous discussion and debate by MPs before approval. The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) will be monitoring financial impacts for all businesses.

“The UK’s economic outlook has stabilised. Falling inflation, which recently reached the Bank of England’s 2 per cent target, is expected to continue and this stability bodes well for all businesses and investors. However, geopolitical uncertainties such as Ukraine and attacks on shipping around the Suez Canal continue and could still send shock waves through the UK economy. Businesses must remain observant of this and prepare with agile strategies to minimise negative implications.

“Thirdly, the UK government may also introduce enhanced funding opportunities for start-ups through grants, loans, or tax incentives. This could encourage innovation and growth but is yet to be confirmed. Changes in legal regulations can also affect start-ups, for example, simplifying bureaucracy, reducing compliance costs and streamlining processes can benefit new businesses. The government may also introduce initiatives to education and workforce development, which will help start ups and businesses to foster relevant skills and attract talent.

“Finally, if the new government can stimulate enhanced and sustainable economic growth in the near term this confidence could be good news for many businesses.”


Hans-Christian “Gigi” Zapell, CEO and Founder, IMMO


“The UK tech landscape remains strong largely due to the exceptional entrepreneurial talent and the UK being a dynamic financial marketplace in Europe. However, the outlook for the UK tech landscape has substantially worsened with Brexit playing a significant role in this decline.

“Bearing this in mind, there are several key challenges that the incoming government must address:

“Chief amongst those is the talent shortage. The tech industry relies heavily on skilled labour and the new government must address the post-Brexit talent gap by ensuring that the UK remains an attractive destination for global talent.

“Second is the access to capital by which the government must work to maintain and enhance the availability of venture capital and growth funding.

“Third is regulatory alignment The government must ensure that the UK’s regulatory framework is both supportive of innovation and aligned with international standards. Diverging too far from EU regulations could complicate market access and operational logistics for tech companies.

“Last but not least, the government must ensure that changes in the tax framework do not erode the attractiveness of starting entrepreneurial endeavours.

“The incoming government must increase R&D support particularly in emerging technologies like AI and quantum computing will ensure that the UK remains at the cutting edge of innovation. Secondly, targeted tax incentives and grants aimed at high-tech projects could stimulate growth and innovation. Streamlining visa processes for tech talent and providing incentives for global tech experts to work in the UK can also help bridge the talent gap.”


Teresa Payne, Managing Partner, Parfitt Cresswell



“As a director of an employee owner law firm, economic policy and taxation are key issues and always on my mind – we are very aware that we need a supportive tax environment to thrive. Changes in corporate tax rates directly hits our bottom line affecting how much we can reinvest back into our employees, services to our clients and business growth.

“High taxes can feel like a penalty for our success, while lower rates give us the breathing room to innovate and expand and everyone in the business benefits from the businesses success. Investment incentives, like tax breaks for R&D are essential and really help small businesses. They’re not just financial perks – they allow us to develop new legal technologies and improve our services to clients.”


Asif Ghafoor, CEO, Be.EV



“Labour should introduce a simple mandate that compels every local authority to open up 50% of their land for private companies to install EV chargers. They don’t have the capital or expertise to do it themselves. We don’t want any more rules or changes – that’s a headache for everyone. What we really need is continuity and certainty. This will really help charging networks to expand.

“There needs to be some encouragement to drivers, and we have a few options here. We could reduce the power cost for those who switch and get rid of the VAT on public EV charging costs. Norway is a good example. They gave free exemptions to the toll for EV drivers and gave free local authority parking as well. These aren’t expensive and they went a long way in creating a more positive feel about EVs.

“We have an opportunity to be world leaders in EV chargers. We have the expertise and capital to do it, and if we do it successfully, we can export this to other countries, creating jobs and investment along the way.

“Every time previous Governments have had a mandate to encourage green finance investment it’s ended up being a disaster. We should have less government involvement. There’s enough capital and expertise in the UK that all the Government needs to do is simplify things and let the private sector get on with it.

“The obsession with a total number of chargers being installed is unhelpful. It leads to far too many cheap lamppost chargers being installed, which are not only slow, but will become nothing more than street clutter in the next three years.

“Instead, the Government should set clear targets that each DNO needs to deliver a certain amount of power to chargers on an annual basis or they get fined! It’s simple – we need more of a focus on installing faster chargers and put the pressure on DNOs to get them to speed up the transition.

“Instead, they should have targets for chargers in their area to provide a certain amount of power to encourage more useful chargers. If they don’t meet these targets they should be fined. The LEVI fund has been a complete waste of time and needs to be scrapped. It means local authorities spend a lot of time faffing around unnecessarily for very little progress.

“Finally – bring the 2035 ban back to 2030. It’s an achievable goal that won’t cost the Government a lot, but will be a huge psychological boost that will get people feeling good about EVs again.”


Jonathan Patrick, CEO, Consultant Connect



“Waiting lists should be one of the biggest priorities for the incoming Labour government, or we could be looking at a new normal of waiting lists remaining stubbornly high in the future?

“The new Government desperately needs to appreciate that the NHS is in a bad position. It’s dangerous to do the opposite because it hides the extent of the problem.

“NHS staff, including management have been battered by reducing budgets, and we need some radical changes, rather than more of the same “cut cut cut” mentality.

“I think it’s time for a national approach set centrally by NHS England. Decide on the best ideas for impacting waiting lists and fund them centrally. Pay hospitals, GPs and commissioners for rolling out the strategies. And measure, measure, measure to make sure it’s working.

“For example, we’ve found that waiting lists for many specialties can be reduced by between a third and a half when consultants “triage” referrals on the waiting list. It’s quick, cheap and can be rolled out centrally. Try that with a couple of other good ideas and you’ll start to see results by September. It will work better than what we’re currently doing.”


Christophe Williams, CEO, Naked Energy



“Now Labour is in power, they must end the subsidies on fossil fuels. We’re being led to believe by some that we must choose between renewable energy and domestic security – that’s it’s impossible to have both.

“This is not true. Security of supply for the UK can be secured by ending our dependence on natural gas. Gas prices have risen by 24% over the last three months, and as temperatures get colder in the winter we can expect this to rise further.

“At the moment we’re importing liquefied natural gas from the US. This should only be a backup – it’s far too expensive to be the solution.

“All this makes it misleading to suggest that subsidising fossil fuels will shore up our domestic energy security and keep prices down. Claire Coutinho herself has admitted that relying on North Sea oil and gas “wouldn’t necessarily bring energy bills down”.

“Renewable energy is the only answer for long-term security. The UK has hundreds of small businesses producing innovative renewable technology that can provide our energy needs. What’s been holding them back is an inconsistent and uncertain investment environment.

“This is particularly relevant for decarbonising heat. It’s responsible for about 37% of total UK carbon emissions, yet is consistently forgotten about in the rush to electrify everything. The next Government would be wise not to neglect it – we can’t reach net zero without renewable heat.

“A positive step Labour could take would be to re-introduce the Renewable Heat Incentive for commerce and industry, and make sure it stays in place. We should also introduce an advantage for local suppliers, much like the Inflation Reduction Act did in the US. Giving a 10% bonus on products designed or made in the UK would provide a huge boost for renewable energy.

“In conjunction with this, we also need to train the next generation of workers to fill the jobs that will be created. Governments should work with businesses and set up academies to do this, as well as fund more apprenticeship schemes.

“We have an opportunity to become world leaders in renewable energy, and it won’t require historical levels of funding. All we need is the Government to provide the support and clarity that will nudge us in the right direction. We have the innovation and the resources to take care of the rest.”


Hayley Knight, Co-founder & Communications Director, BE YELLOW



“I think, in line with Keir Starmer’s comments about not working past 6pm on Friday, and the upcoming proposed ‘Right to Disconnect’ bill, for employees who no longer wish to engage after work hours, it would be fantastic to see a more mindful approach to leadership and business development.

“With his comments, Starmer has sent a strong, positive message of boundary setting, work/life balance, and a healthy work mindset. So it would be good to see more emphasis on remote working opportunities, 4 day work weeks, and wellbeing initiatives, in order to boost productivity, focus and the overall employee experience.

“We need to move away from ‘the grind’, and Starmer needs to prioritise wellbeing and engagement. Businesses need more funding available to them, in order to form partnerships designed to boost both of these for both employees, and leaders, and it would be beneficial to set up a business task force of leaders who are already working to make a difference for both business and industry, as well as the wider community, to learn from them.

“Business needs to be people led, rather than profits, and it’s time to invest in more empathetic leadership, in order to develop a more sustainable business economy that works for everyone.”


Lena Hackeloer, CEO and Founder, Brite Payments



“Britain has been at the forefront of global financial services for many years and will undoubtedly continue to play a crucial role as fintech evolves. Together with the EU, Britain has spearheaded the development of an effective open banking framework based on regulatory standards. Continued collaboration between the UK and the EU will help ensure that Europe remains the global standard-bearer as we enter a new phase of open banking, and develop more use cases that benefit both businesses and consumers.

“In its manifesto, Labour highlighted the need to advance the next phase of Open Banking and to outline a roadmap for the future of Open Finance. It is reassuring to see this is a priority, as maintaining momentum is essential. The UK’s continued commitment is a positive sign that this will indeed be the case.”


Riaz Moola, Founder and CEO, HyperionDev



“My initial reaction is positive. The Labour Party’s strong focus on post-16 education, skills training, and workforce development is likely to help the labour market. The pledges outlined in the manifesto not only present new opportunities for collaboration and innovation in the Edtech sector, but also signal a potential boost to the sector’s growth and development—which is exactly what we need.

I strongly hope the government will support businesses by facilitating partnerships between educational institutions, tech companies, and training providers. With the right support, Labour’s policies can support scalability and adapt to rapid technological changes, while fostering a culture of collaboration and innovation that will keep businesses competitive and innovative.

However, the actual execution and the bureaucratic process involved can often cause delays. Ensuring that the policies are visionary, practical, and quickly actionable will be crucial for Labour to make positive change as quickly as possible.

Overall, the focus on skills and education is a positive signal for the Edtech industry and society at large. A skilled workforce is fundamental to economic growth and innovation. If the new government can effectively implement their policies, there is significant potential for enhanced public-private partnerships, improved employment rates, and technological advancement.”


Scott Dawson, Head of Sales and Strategic Partnerships, DECTA



“It was a divisive election but what matters now is that the new government prioritise common sense policies, including those in favour of the fintech community and its significant potential to better serve UK businesses. This especially goes for small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs), which collectively supports 27 million jobs. That is 61% of UK employment and accounts for a staggering £4.5 trillion in annual turnover.”

“Political clarity will be key to achieving this. Labour have been selling themselves as ‘not Tories’ and the Tories have been selling themselves as ‘not Labour’, and so on and so on. These parties have been defining themselves on what they’re not – it’s going to be interesting to see what they actually are and what solutions they will bring to strengthen the economy.”

“Despite 14 years of discussions about fostering innovation, regional development, and tech investment, London’s status as a supposed global fintech hub ever translated into meaningful government action – hopefully we’ll see a change to this now. Primarily, the government should look to actively promote private sector investment as and when it materialises.”

“It would also be positive to see this government learn from some of the most impactful changes that were implemented prior to the UK leaving the EU. The Payment Services Directive (PSD) regulations, for instance, spurred innovation by introducing Open Banking and 3DS services. Embracing, not fearing, regulation could be a game-changer. Less aversion to strong government support would be positive could unlock significant profit potential and fuel further innovation for UK businesses – helping them to prosper through better access to finance and financial services.”