Less than half of small businesses believe that they have been provided enough support during the first COVID-19 lockdown, according to the Prosper Small Business Resilience Survey.
Only 45.7% of the study’s around 1,200 respondents said they received enough support, despite overall approval of the government’s response to the pandemic, Stuff reported.
This dissatisfaction was mostly due to relief measures not being able to target the real needs of businesses, it was suggested. Some measures were also structured in a way which small businesses believe could actually hamper their ability to thrive in the longer term.
“Wage subsidy was a big help but other expenses (power, rent, insurance, phone) had to be paid through my pocket, as no relief on that. And especially when business was almost on very low sale with zero profits,” a small business owner was quoted as saying in the report.
Many small business owners did not like that the loans offered would actually add more long-term debt to their books. Most of their woes were related to rent and lease expenses, as these are major fixed costs despite the lack of revenue due to being shut down. This has led to some conflict with landlords, some of which have demanded payment, which could force small businesses into insolvency.