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23 May 2016

EU Referendum Briefing: Being Prepared

Government Affairs

Konrad Adenaeur, Joseph Bech, Alcide De Gasperi, Sicco Mansholt, Paul-Henri Spaak and Johan Willem Beyen. Six names that have little meaning today. But for these six Founding Fathers of Europe, the idea of a United Europe brought the prospect of ending a continent’s obsession of fighting frequent and bloody wars.

The journey from that idea in the 1940s and early 50s, to the organisation we all see before us today is a remarkable one. One that has grown from six member states, to a massive twenty-eight today. A community defined by the simple text of the 1951 Treaty of Paris, and after eight iterations the mammoth document underpinning the Treaty of Lisbon of today. The vision of simply combining coal and steel production, to now being a community celebrating “peace, freedom and security in and around Europe.”

As Gordon Brown so eloquently outlined the other day: “This is a remarkable achievement: the height of civilisation that 28 nations with different languages, different traditions, and different customs are able to find a way to cooperate with each other.”

As businesses now start thinking about the end date of June 23rd, a lot still needs to be done from a planning perspective. Regardless of the outcome, the first order of the day must be thinking through messaging for June 24th. Even for those companies who have already gone public with their opinion, they need to plan for either eventuality.

In addition, understanding the new reality, and specifically what it will mean for your business, is also something that should be considered now. How best to analyse the impact to your sector, conducting the relevant risk assessments and setting up the correct internal processes to manage the change programme, are just a few of the considerations any large scale business should prepare for. If we do end up voting to LEAVE, having thought through these processes will hold you in good stead for the road ahead. In the run-up to the final weeks of the campaign Edelman is ready to help businesses on messaging and to assist with all the necessary preparations.

Edelman has prepared a full briefing on recent updates, to read it please click here. For more information, please contact Gurpreet Brar on 020 3047 2466 or at

Image: Botond Horvath /

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