The parent company of Virgin Media UK, Liberty Global, today announced its plans to donate £500,000 to the official “Remain” campaign for the British EU Referendum. The campaign is dedicated to keeping Britain in the European Union as a result of the June Referendum, and is seeing a variety of donations form the corporate sector, including an additional £500,000 donated by Goldman Sachs and lower donations in the hundreds of thousands form other bands and multinational corporations.
Liberty Global’s half-a-million pound donation remains one of the largest seen from the corporate sector to either campaign.
The campaign for Britain to stay in the EU has been vocally supported by Virgin Media’s executive staff, including their CEO Tom Mockridge, and Liberty Global’s Chief Executive Mike Fries, who has not only been vocally supporting the campaign but was recently involved in a petition to support the Remain campaign.
The total campaign donations possible for the Remain campaign can equal a maximum of £7,000,000 and can be raised and spent at any point before June 23rd, so the amount provided by Liberty Global will make a massive dent in the campaign’s funding needs, even at their absolute maximum.
Liberty Global is a multinational corporation with operatins across the world, most of them centred in the EU – so their stance makes sense. They generally provide telecoms technology and are responsible for nearly a third of all UK broadband subscriptions, with 37,000 employees in total. In the UK, their broadband subsricptions are up around 13,000,000.
Speaking to those subscribers today, a Liberty Global spokesman said “Along with many other multinationals with a strong European presence, Liberty Global is evaluating a potential contribution of up to £500,000 to Britain Stronger In Europe, given the uncertain macroeconomic impact that a UK exit from the EU could have on business and consumers.”
However, Virgin Media is not alone in its telecoms support for the remain campaign. BT’s CEO Mike Rake is an outspoken advocate for the Remain campaign, while Vodafone PR teams have warned the public about the huge impact that will be caused by Brexit.
Noticeably, Sky has remained “absolutely impartial” on the debate, which sets it apart from the other telecoms giants vying for control of Britain. According to Sky CEO Jeremy Darroch, remaining impartial is “very important” to the company.
In a private meeting with David Cameron this week, Xavier Rolet of the London Stock Exchange warned that leaving the EU would be disastrous for business in the UK. He purportedly warned that an enormous amount of commerce and work based in London on behalf of businesses with heavy stakes in the EU would be forced out if the exit goes ahead, driving Cameron to warn the House of Commons of “a potential for a huge dislocation to the economy.”
The referendum will take place on June 23rd.