Category: International business

IR35 changes undermine self-employed at “worst possible time”

IPSE (the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed) has said that the changes to IR35 self-employed taxation coming into effect today are undermining the sector at the “worst possible time”.

IPSE research has shown that half of freelancers are planning to stop contracting in the UK after the changes – unless they can get contracts unaffected by them. Instead, they are planning to seek contracts abroad, stop working altogether, seek an employed role or retire within the next year.

Clients seem to be reacting badly to the changes too: nearly one in four contractors said in February that their clients were either uncertain or had made no indication of what they would do in response to the IR35 changes.

Meanwhile, a quarter said that their clients were planning to blanket-assess all their contractors as ‘inside IR35’ and one fifth will only engage contractors working through umbrella companies. Nearly one … Read the rest

Fuller’s to raise cash after burning through £5m every month in lockdown

The pub group Fuller, Smith & Turner has revealed that revenues fell 80% during the past year on the back of coronavirus lockdowns as it seeks to raise cash to see it through the reopening of UK hospitality.

The company said it had burned through between £4m and £5m for every month of full lockdown, when its pubs and hotels were forced to close.

The pubs sector has been among the hardest hit during the pandemic, with restrictions in place since late March 2020 that have ranged from total bans on opening to curfews and requirements to sell “substantial meals” with drinks. Fuller’s said its pubs will have been closed on 73% of the days between 30 March 2020 and 12 April 2021.

Fuller’s plans to raise about £54m via a share placing to give it enough cash to spend on the reopening of British pubs as well as to … Read the rest

Google adjusts remote working as it looks to reopens offices

Google is changing its work-from-home policy as it looks to get more people back into its offices.

The tech firm will only allow employees to work from home for more than 14 days a year if they apply for it.

Google will continue it current work-from-home arrangements until 1 September but will allow people to return voluntarily from next month.

The tech giant was one of the first companies to offer working from home when the pandemic struck last year.

“It’s now been a year since many of us have been working from home, and the thought of returning to the office might inspire different emotions,” Fiona Cicconi, Google’s head of people operations, wrote in a company email on Wednesday.

Google is currently preparing for a broad reopening in September, when employees will be expected to be in the office for at least three days a week.

Until then, the … Read the rest

Special purpose acquisition companies fall out of favour with investors

After an wave of special purpose acquisition companies, known as Spacs, the tide appears to be turning, with some of the highest-profile examples now under pressure

Spacs — or blank-cheque funds — are shell companies that raise money via initial public offerings before listing on a stock exchange. Then they search for an acquisition, typically a private company. Once a deal is finalised, the Spac takes its target public by absorbing it and its investors take a slice of the new company. If no deal is done, the fund is liquidated and investors are refunded.

Two months ago shares in Sir Richard Branson’s VG Acquisition Corp surged to $17.65 when it announced its merger with 23andme, a genetic testing firm. It has since fallen by 42 per cent to $10.20.

Shares in Churchill Capital Corp IV have halved since its combination with Lucid Motors, an electric carmaker, was announced on … Read the rest

Contractors not confident in client IR35 decisions

More than half of contractors don’t believe their end-client is ready for IR35, despite there being just one week before the deadline.

In its survey of IR35 experts also found that contracting professionals felt they were more ready for the changes themselves, with 73% of respondents stating that they felt prepared or somewhat prepared for the upcoming IR35 reform.

The data did reveal some worrying trends that could impact the availability of contract talent in the immediate future. Overall, 69% of contractors said that if they were deemed inside IR35 they would either leave or charge a higher fee, with just 14% stating that they would accept an inside IR35 decision.

This potential exodus of contractors from talent pools is further exacerbated by the struggles this group have faced over the last year. According to research conducted by specialist insurance broker Kingsbridge, a staggering 70% of contractors have gone without … Read the rest

Outspoken mentor says autism makes him a better businessman

A veteran mentor diagnosed as autistic at the age of 54 who says it makes him a better businessman is publishing his new book.

As National Autism Month gets under way, Jon McCulloch is sharing his expertise to help men and women in construction and the trades supercharge their businesses and profits.

Jon, now 56, also widely known as the Evil Bald Genius, is the author of Get Off the Tools – The Smart Tradesman’s Business Bible, published in World

Described as a blueprint to help change the way you think about your business, the book focuses on Jon’s renowned Trades Accelerator Model.

Jon, who blogs about autism at Unapologetically Autistic has made his work available in print and online.

In it, he rails against “snowflakes” and offers a straightforward plan to financial success – for different types of self-employed tradesmen he dubs wallowers, followers, fighters, and flyers.

He says:” … Read the rest

Google Maps to start showing eco-friendly routes

Google Maps will start directing drivers to routes it calculates to be the most eco-friendly based on a list of factors.

The search engine said it will highlight journeys that generate the lowest carbon footprint using mainly traffic data and road inclines.

Google said the feature would launch first in the US later this year “with a global expansion on the way”.

The new feature is part of its commitment to fight climate change.

When launched, the default route on the Google Maps app will be the “eco-friendly” option, unless users choose to opt out of it.

When alternative routes are significantly faster, Google will offer choices and let users compare estimated emissions.

“What we are seeing is for around half of routes, we are able to find an option more eco-friendly with minimal or no time-cost trade-off,” Russell Dicker, a director of product at Google said.

The search engine, … Read the rest

Employers: avoid mental health issues at work by lowering stress for yourself and your team

It’s a seemingly silent killer of mood and health. As Stress Awareness Month begins on the 1st April, often regulated to business owners, even PAYE employees have had to live with uncertainty of whether they will be paid at the end of each month.

Over the course of a full year dealing with Covid-19, the sheer amount of cortisol, the hormone released when you are stressed, likely reached dangerous levels within most of the UK’s population. This can have adverse affects on memory function, sleep and overall health – both mental and physical.

Stress at work has been difficult to separate from stress at home. Social isolation and anxiety have also taken a huge toll: enquiries to private healthcare services about depression were 42% higher in January 2021 than in January 2020, with a 21% increase in enquiries about anxiety disorders over the same period.

Dr Ian Nnatu, a consultant Read the rest

US threatens 25% tariffs on UK exports in row over Britain’s ‘unreasonable’ tech firm tax

The US is threatening to impose tariffs of up to 25 per cent on some UK exports as it retaliates over Britain’s new ‘unreasonable’ and ‘discriminatory’ tax on big tech firms.

The UK introduced a digital services tax last April in a bid to ensure search engines, social media platforms and online marketplaces pay their fair share.

But Washington believes the tax unfairly targets US firms and it is now pressing ahead with counter-measures as it applies the pressure to Number 10 to change course.

The increased tariffs on UK exports could be imposed on items like make-up, coats, dresses, shirts, ceramics, gold necklaces, air conditioning machines, furniture and game consoles.

The US is threatening to impose tariffs of up to 25 per cent on some UK exports as it retaliates over Britain’s new ‘unreasonable’ and ‘discriminatory’ tax on big tech firms

The UK’s digital services tax, first unveiled back … Read the rest

A 3-step plan to wrap up every quarter to Lead Beyond The Edge

As we reach the end of the first quarter of the year, it is time to wrap up this quarter impactfully: a time to pause and consolidate your learning before jumping into the next quarter and onwards.

I’m results-driven, and there is nothing more that I love than helping you reach your results. In my newly published Lead Beyond The Edge book, this is exactly what I do, and here I’ve put together a 3-step plan to guide you to wrap up this quarter, and indeed, every quarter after that, impactfully, so that you can start the next quarter strong.

1.1 PLAN to REFLECT

Where you are today is the direct reflection of the thoughts, decisions, and actions you took days, months and years ago, which actually means that where you will be tomorrow will be a direct reflection of the thoughts, decisions, and actions you are about to take … Read the rest