Have you picked up a newspaper today? Tuned in to any news channel? Glanced at social media? If you haven’t then let me tell you what you’re missing. Headlines, many headlines related to two very distinct life events.
Marriage and divorce.
I am of course referring to the forthcoming royal marriage between Harry and Meghan – congratulations to you both - and the UK's divorce from the European Union. As we all know these two events will be (and have been) followed intensively by the press. These two things are probably all we will read about until the joyful wedding next May, and then the possibly not so joyful EU divorce in 2019.
There are obviously associated costs to either a marriage and a divorce. The Royal family will pick up the cost for the wedding but I wonder who will pick up the cost for Brexit? The touted £50 billion divorce bill is a lot of money to pay for something that is not really defined. The cheque will be signed and paid for by the UK Government and funded by tax payers, i.e. more of less all of us. Will there be any positive fiscal impact of this divorce? Probably in the long term but definitely not in the short term.
Let us at least hope that when the divorce bill is settled, the more important talks about a trade deal will clear up some of the uncertainty. This way we can then start to think ahead with a more creative mindset.
Marriage and divorce, taken in context, are a big part of business life. For example when companies start to collaborate, they share profit and risks. This could be through mergers or acquisitions or by creating a joint venture. These processes follow a similar pattern to people building their own relationships. You meet, fall in love and then propose. You jointly decide to stay together for a long time and hopefully for the rest of your lives. It is exactly the same between businesses. In most cases it works out, but in some cases it does not and you end up in divorce.
That is part of life.
There are a lot of happy marriages but then there are also some not so happy marriages. What I wonder is if there can be happy divorces? Time will tell.
Until next week.