Repayments crisis threatens region's firms
The Herald|December 07, 2021
BUSINESSES COULD GO BUST IF THEY CANNOT SETTLE LOANS
WILLIAM TELFORD

THE South West could see a sharp rise in the number of businesses going bust because they are struggling to replay coronavirus pandemic loans, a leading insolvency practitioner says.

Already, one Plymouth hospitality business has gone belly-up because it cannot replay a Bounce Back Loan, and there are fears others could follow.

Plymouth-based insolvency practitioner Geoffrey Kirk said he is receiving inquiries from troubled firms “every other day”, with a 100% increase on this time last year. They are from all across the South West but predominantly in the hospitality sector and predominantly involving unpaid Bounce Back Loans.

The businesses are wondering what their options are, as they face paying back up to £50,000 of borrowing with interest. The loans were interest-free for the first year but then had to be repaid at a rate of 2.5%, over six years, which can now be stretched to ten.

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