The Growth Company has released a study into the impact of coronavirus on UK SMEs.
The weekly rolling Growth Company Covid-19 Impact Survey has measured the sentiment of almost 2000 Greater Manchester businesses to date.
So far there’s been a mixture of “resilience, optimism and concern.”
Some of the headline figures so far show that 91% of companies are now impacted by the pandemic. This has steadily increased over time – it was 35% in the first week of March.
Half of businesses in the last week are using the furlough scheme and 62% of those surveyed had furloughed at least half of their staff.
76% say they have experienced a decline in sales, with almost 40% having cash flow problems.
27.5% of respondents stated that they had no more than 3 months of cash reserves.
39% of companies are using government loans or grants.
Despite this, less than 3% of those who responded said they had made redundancies, but 15% state that they are likely to have this issue “on their future agenda.”
7% of firms are reporting growth, this is mainly in Life Sciences, Agriculture, Education and Manufacturing.
“We are now also starting to plan support for the businesses who will lead our economic recovery and it is heartening to see that their remains significant optimism among survey respondents,” explained Mark Hughes, Chief Executive of the Growth Company.
“The depth of our relationship with the business community, combined with our skills and experience, means that we are perfectly placed to guide companies through this crisis and into economic recovery
“The results of our rolling survey provide reasons for both optimism and concern, but we are now at least armed with information to support our efforts on behalf of employers. We are ready to share the benefits of our insight, expertise and skills with partners and colleagues as we prepare for economic recovery and growth.”
You can view the survey here.