John Harris

Journalist & Author

The Brexit threat hanging over startups in the UK tech sector

EU departure is hitting staffing and triggering animosity to European employees

“We allow cultures to understand each other better,” says Bernhard Niesner, the co-founder and chief executive of a language-learning app called Busuu.

Its HQ is near Old Street tube station, on the edge of east London’s Silicon Roundabout district. About 100 people work at Busuu, helping users learn languages including French, English, Polish, Arabic and Chinese. Defying the usual tech stereotypes, 40% of the staff are women. An array of flags adorns the walls; there is a constant multilingual chatter.

Related: Companies press Brexit panic button in further blow to Theresa May

Related: Risk of no-deal Brexit ‘very high’, says key EU negotiator

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