Businesses close as COVID-19 continues to spread

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Birmingham shopping centre – Pixabay

As cases of coronavirus grow daily in the UK, business owners worry that they may be forced to close. There are over 22,000 COVID-19, with the death toll standing at over 1,400.

Many successful businesses within the UK have closed as Prime Minister Boris Johnson put measures in place to ban social gatherings.

All bars, pubs and restaurants closed at midnight on Friday 20th March and as of Monday 23rd March, all non-essential retailers such as John Lewis, Next, HMV and many more were forced to close. Wetherspoons is just one of the many businesses who have been affected by closing.

Wetherspoons logo – @Wetherspoons Twitter

Eddie Gershon, Media Relations for Wetherspoons explains how the virus has affected the restaurant.

“All 874 Wetherspoon pubs have closed and this is a major problem as no income. There is no online service available to Wetherspoon customers and Wetherspoon are confident that all it’s pubs will reopen when the virus is sorted.

“As a result of no money coming into to tills at Wetherspoons, this has led to a loss in profits for the company”.

Eddie Gershon, Media Relations, Wetherspoons

The latest information from Birmingham City Council on how they can help support businesses affected by the virus.

Kevin Glasby, Deputy Head for Department for Accounting, Finance and Economics at Birmingham City University explains how the virus has a major impact on businesses and sales.

“For most businesses the measures taken to combat the virus will have a negative effect on the economy resulting in lower sales of most goods. There will be some areas where this won’t be the case.

“The reduced demand for products and services will have a negative impact on business’s cash flows which will mean that some won’t be able to pay bills as aome may decide to reduce their workforce making people redundant.”

The concerns that employees had was being out of work and not having any money to live on or pay bills. However, in a government conference, Rishi Sunak, Chancellor of the Exchequer confirmed they will pay up to 80% of employees’ wages and self-employed workers will receive 80% of their usual income.

Businesses who have an online presence will be successful with sales during the lockdown as shopping online continues. However, some companies are closing distribution meaning orders may be delayed. Nevertheless, businesses that are independent and rely on trade will be hit hardest.

For more information on what the government plans to do for businesses and up to date information on coronavirus on NHS website.

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