20 Jun 2018

EU Remain lead 'narrows amongst businesses' as referendum approaches


Welcome to the June 2016 Newsletter in association with Aequitas Accountants Ltd. With the EU referendum fast approaching, many businesses are weighing up the pros and cons of voting to leave or remain a part of the EU. As politicians continue to hotly debate the issue, recent data from the British Chambers of Commerce suggests that the 'Remain' lead has narrowed among business leaders, although a majority of those polled in their final survey intend to vote to stay in the EU.

Meanwhile, under new legislation UK companies must begin providing information to Companies House regarding 'persons with significant control' (PSCs), with effect from 30 June onwards. We provide an overview of the key requirements.

EU Remain lead 'narrows amongst businesses' as referendum approaches
In its final pre-referendum poll, the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) found that the gap between the Remain and Leave campaigns has narrowed, although a majority of the senior businesspeople surveyed (54.1%) intend to vote to remain in the European Union in the referendum on 23 June.

Commenting on the findings, Dr Adam Marshall, BCC Acting Director General, said: 'As the EU referendum campaign enters the final straight, the race for the business vote has clearly tightened'.
In the survey, those trading with other EU markets expressed the strongest support for the Remain campaign, while businesspeople representing large firms were found to be significantly more likely to vote Remain than those in micro-businesses.

The BCC survey also suggested that many individuals are now committed to their voting preferences. Only a minimal amount of respondents (0.3%) stated that they were as yet uncommitted, while 10.8% said that they could potentially change their mind before the referendum.

Other key findings included:

  • For the majority of business leaders, the referendum has had no material impact to date on various aspects of their business
  • However, many reported that they expect to see significant impacts following the referendum, especially in the event of a vote to leave
  • Were the UK to leave the EU, 35.9% reported that they would expect a negative impact on their overall growth strategy, whilst 15.9% believe that it would have a positive impact
  • Should the UK remain in the EU, 12.8% expect this to have a negative impact on their overall growth strategy, while nearly a third (30.1%) believe that it would have a positive impact.

Dr Marshall added: 'Whichever outcome prevails, Westminster must shift its attention back to the economy on June 24 without delay. Growth is softening, and Westminster's referendum 'tunnel vision' over the past year has meant that far too many key economic issues have been given short shrift or delayed altogether.'

Companies required to produce a register of 'persons with significant control'

Recent changes to company law have imposed new obligations on UK companies, as well as those holding interests in UK companies.

Following the changes, UK companies are now required to produce a 'persons with significant control' (PSC) register, containing details of the ultimate beneficial owners of the company.

This information must be filed with Companies House, where it will be held in a public register, with the stated aim of improving the level of transparency of UK companies.

The requirement for companies to keep a PSC register came into effect on 6 April 2016, and under the regulations companies must:

  • Identify the people with significant control over the company and confirm their information
  • Record the details on the company's own PSC register
  • Provide this information to Companies House as part of the annual Confirmation Statement (formerly the Annual Return) from 30 June 2016, and update the register on an ongoing basis.
    Companies must look beyond the individuals who immediately own their shares, in order to identify those individuals or entities which ultimately have significant control of the company.

A PSC is defined as an individual to whom one or more of the following applies:

  • either directly or indirectly holds more than 25% of the shares in a company
  • either directly or indirectly holds more than 25% of the voting rights in a company
  • has the right to appoint or remove a majority of a company's board of directors
  • exercises, or has the right to exercise, significant influence or control over the company
  • exercises, or has the right to exercise, significant influence or control over the activities of a trust or firm which is not a legal entity, and which itself meets one of the above conditions.

Notice must be given by the company to any people or entities that it believes are registrable for the PSC, allowing one month for the recipient to provide confirmation of their position. Any individual who knows, or ought reasonably to know, that they should be registered is also required to notify the company of their interest.

Information on the company's own PSC register must be updated on an ongoing basis. Under the new 'check and confirm' process, which replaces the Annual Return, companies will supply a confirmation statement affirming whether the information remains up-to-date. Failure to comply with the new rules could potentially result in significant financial penalties and a criminal conviction.

Aequitas help with all aspects of managing your business, including your company secretarial requirements. Please contact Aequitas for assistance.

1 June -New advisory fuel rates applicable.
30 June -End of CT61 quarterly period.
Annual adjustment for VAT partial exemption calculations (March VAT year end).


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Students show diverse range of work created in collaboration with Epson technology

Epson RA Premiums LFR

The RA Schools Premiums Interim Projects exhibition took place for the first time in the historic Sackler Wing of Galleries at the Royal Academy. The annual show provides a unique opportunity to view exciting new work by 17 emerging and international artists at the interim point of their postgraduate study at the UK’s longest established art school, the RA Schools. Many of the works on display were produced using Epson technology and media, which are all accessible onsite to the students within the Schools’ Epson-sponsored Digital Media Suite.

Providing the Schools with state-of-the-art large format digital printing, AV projection technologies and specialist media, gives students the opportunity to experiment with a wide range of work incorporating a wide range of practices, from hand-made objects and wallpaper installations to paintings and trompe l’oeil, as well as film, woodcuts, photography, film and sound.

The only free three-year postgraduate course in the UK, the RA Schools programme is tailor-made to the individual student, affording each artist the space and flexibility to develop work across a broad array of media. Epson has been an integral part of the Schools fabric for several years, offering support and guidance to the students and staff, and the freedom to experiment and engage with technologies to produce a diverse range of work.

There was much evidence this year of the creative collaboration between students and Epson technologies, with all of the students having utilised the Epson Digital Media Suite at some point during their study.

This was particularly evident in the works of five of the artists on show:

  • Jack Burton works with high-gloss colour photographic prints of complex still life, often constructed from sculptural collages of found objects, customized spaces and earlier produced photographic images, printed using an Epson large-format printer.
  • India Mackie produces large scale video installations using Epson HD projectors to create physical 4D experiences in high resolution.
  • Martin Gross creates prints that span centuries of print processes on their journey of production. He begins by making drawings that are scanned, these become rasterised translations that then become wood-cut stencils via laser cutting equipment and digital print. These manifest as large format digital wallpaper installations that can be customised to fill and match bespoke environments and additionally they can become smaller framed-sized editions that utilise both state-of-the-art Epson inkjet printing and traditional 18th century wood engraving.
  • Dimitri Gallitzine produces work across a broad range of media. For Premiums, he created and projected a ‘mockumentary’ film, using an Epson HD projector, in which he documented a journey where he attempted to become a professional Elvis impersonator.
  • Sebastian Jefford is a sculptor of idiosyncratic objects made from a combination of diverse materials that include nails, wood, Plasticine, drawing and printing. The material skins which surround them are printed with screen printed Plasticine from film positives produced on a large format Epson printer. Jefford triumphs by an almost miss-use of the technologies intended functions.

Mark Hampson, Head of Fine Art Processes at the RA Schools, who along with his specialist team is responsible for facilitating the students creative ambitions in the RA workshops, says of this group of students: "Our students never cease to surprise me in their creativity and the manifestations of their uses and abuses of the technology and equipment we are able to offer them at the RA Schools. They constantly surprise with their use of the available resources and the ambition with which they can apply these in their Art. This year’s Premiums is an amazing example of the strength of our collaborative project with Epson. Without Epson's support and the sponsorship of equipment and its technical knowledge, many of these artworks would not have been conceivable.

Epson offers us the means and conceptual virtuosity to think laterally about technology and the implications and effects of our digital age. They do this with wonderful generosity and complete trust, often knowing that the resulting artistic consequences may be bizarre, unexpected, un-commercial but always exciting. I cannot think of a more positive way for industry and art education to collaborate and support each other."

Further information on the RA Schools and upcoming events: www.royalacademy.org.uk/page/the-ra-schools

[Image by Andy Keate.]

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