While the United States has a tough choice ahead of them in terms of who they want to be their next President, our cousins across the pond in the UK have just voted in what will go down as a decisive point in the modern history of Britain. The choice that voters faced on Thursday 23rd of June was simple; whether or not to leave the European Union. This morning, it was confirmed that 52% of voters wanted to leave the European Union, pulling the trigger on Brexit. The pound has already taken a huge hit today, and now it appears as though tech giants the world over could be affected as well. Two of South Korea's biggest smartphone manufacturers – as well as the world's – could suffer following the Brexit vote.
Article 50 of the Lisbon treaty has been triggered, causing a process to have the United Kingdom separated from the European Union, which could take as long as two years to complete. As such, it's likely that much is to change in the coming weeks, but both LG and Samsung are worried about a knock to consumer confidence in the UK, and perhaps elsewhere in Europe, as consumers see a weaker pound and could become more frugal. Companies like these two rely on consumers to buy a lot of their goods and keep on buying them, if the UK consumer is less likely to spend their hard earned cash on gadgets as much, this could hit the pockets of these two South Korean giants.
More than this however, both Samsung and LG produce some of their electronics in other parts of Europe, namely Hungary, Poland and Slovakia for Samsung with LG having a plant in Poland. Once the United Kingdom has left the European Union, these good manufactured within the EU could be subject to tariffs and such which could drive up prices and mean that LG and Samsung would get less return on them. Of course, right now a lot of this is speculation, as nobody quite knows what the UK Government and the European Union is to do and what happens throughout the rest of 2016 will be something that tech companies the world over will be watching carefully.