It is often said that the elderly and those with impaired immune systems are most at risk due to Covid-19, but small businesses are just as vulnerable, with many who are not going to survive a global economic shutdown.
Seraj Toefy, Custodian of Entrepreneurship at the University of Stellenbosch Business School (USB) says that according to The Small Business Association, the average cash safety net for small businesses is estimated to last only 27 days.
“The South African Government has communicated clearly and regularly around their safety plans, and they are taking decisive action to flatten the curve, but in so doing, the impact on businesses across the country is monumental. This is not unlike what is happening in other countries, but with one very substantial difference, our Government does not have the resources to offer the scale of economic stimulus packages as other countries can.”
Toefy says that although fear and panic is rampant entrepreneurs now need to rely on one of their strongest traits: perseverance.
“As a small business owner, you often don’t have a larger shareholder to rely on during a time like this, so we must button down the hatches and make sure we’re still standing when the shutdown is inevitably lifted.”
Toefy suggests the following key things that small business owners can do during this time:
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