Chirag Shah

British businesses fear impact of second Covid-19 wave more than Brexit

Almost half of British businesses (48%) fear the impact of the second wave of Covid-19 more than the effects of Brexit (24%), according to new research from Nucleus Commercial Finance.

A survey conducted by Opinium of 506 SME senior decision makers found that a quarter of the participants said they were concerned about not being able to recover from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The data revealed 28% of SMEs are concerned about how their business will survive the reduced consumer spending due to the lack of financial confidence.

In contrast, 18% of SMEs said they were not fearful of anything.

The research also found that younger SME senior decision makers seemed less worried about a second wave of Covid-19 than their older counterparts.

Only 38% of 18-34 year-olds are most concerned about a second wave compared to 52% for those aged 35-54, and 49% for those aged 55 and over.

The findings show SMEs are demonstrating resilience, with 71% of businesses planning to, or having already altered their strategy in order to survive.

Businesses have adapted by shifting teams to remote working (27%), offering their products and services online (19%), and a further 13% have started offering new products and services.

Chirag Shah, CEO at Nucleus Commercial Finance (pictured above), said: “It’s natural that, given the current uncertainty, businesses are fearful of the future and the impact of significant events, such as a second wave of coronavirus, and Brexit.

“However, UK SMEs are demonstrating considerable resilience, and we expect they will continue to do so.

“We know that there is a role for alternative lenders to play in helping Britain’s businesses and supporting them in achieving their goals.

“Together, we can support SMEs to ensure they are equipped to tackle any further challenges thrown their way, as well as boost their performance — and, ultimately, stimulate economic growth.”

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