Our website uses cookies

Cookies enable us to provide the best experience possible and help us understand how visitors use our website. By browsing Retail Design World, you agree to our use of cookies.

Okay, I understand Learn more

Comment: The world outside Europe sees the value in UK design says Adam Rawls

Currently we are still in the EU, we still have access to international talent and our clients have access to us. Who knows how this will change.  

However, for the Rest of the World (ROW) an opportunity has been sniffed and it is no longer just business as usual, it is booming - for us, anyway.  

The arts and creative industry in the UK is the fastest growing sector and a defining point of difference. Clients in the ROW have always known this and with a weak pound we are off to the races. At Rawls we have had more enquiries and commissions from countries outside Europe in the last 6 weeks than in the last 12 months.  

UK architects and designers are highly regarded internationally and long ago embraced work overseas. For most of us it has been like this for years.  

Why? Because, as an industry, we cut our coats according to our cloth. In 2008 we had no choice and our significant growth had to come from outside the EU, from the likes of China, India and the Middle East. Our strengths are in solving design and engineering problems – they always have been and hopefully always will be. It is not about the movement of people but the ability to trade, transfer our intellectual skills and offer something that can’t be found at home.  

We now sell less but sell it for more. We are a rare commodity, adding real value. Creative industries will always ignore imposed boundaries and red tape, that’s how we think. Our job is to find the best way round or a better solution to a brief, as such we are attractive.

Europe has to think of the UK in the same way the ROW does. Business always follows creative talent and so long as we remain creative we will be attractive. We now have the opportunity to set our own rules of international attractiveness. Opposites attract, we are Talent Magnets and our clients will never be fired for employing the best available.  

Adam Rawls is the founder of Rawls