FILE PHOTO: The logo of South Africa's Standard Bank is seen above the company's headquarters in Cape Town
FILE PHOTO: The logo of South Africa's Standard Bank is seen above the company's headquarters in Cape Town

Listen: How SMEs can survive the Covid-19 pandemic

By Simone Cooper Time of article published Jun 19, 2020

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JOHANNESBURG -  We are currently facing a national pandemic that is changing how we do things and forcing us to adapt to the ‘new normal’ where business is not usual anymore. 

With a strong focus on social distancing to contain the outbreak of COVID-19, this and other mandatory precaution measures are heavily impacting the output of businesses across the spectrum. 

It is, however, the smaller enterprises that have ultimately felt it the most.

The reality is that as a country, we must stand together in solidarity and adhere to government’s measures to ensure the safety of staff and customers. 

We know however, that this is putting immense pressure on small businesses who are now forced to adapt under already trying circumstances. What will help this temporary transition is considering tools that will help this transition and maintain the continuity of business operations. 

As the lockdown restrictions are slowly  lifted and some small businesses commence operations, Simone Cooper, Head of Business Banking at Standard Bank Group gives some of her best tips on how small businesses can survive what continues to be a tough economic climate for all.


Changing business landscape  

South African businesses need to prepare and brace themselves for a highly challenging period ahead as the coronavirus pandemic has disrupted day-to-day life and commerce.

This follows President Cyril Ramaphosa and his cabinet’s announcements of a set of bold measures to halt the spread of the coronavirus in South Africa, including travel bans, school closures and limits to the size of public gatherings.

Although measures  were welcome and played a huge part in saving a lot of lives and protecting the most vulnerable, the negative impact they have had on business is undeniable. 

The lockdown has had an impact on various sectors as the demand side of the economy has gone down. There is also uncertainty around policies that have been designed and whether they have served the businesses they were meant to.

As we see lockdown restrictions slowly being lifted, Craig Polkinghorne, Head of Commercial Banking at Standard Bank Group gives insight on what we can expect the business landscape to look like post lockdown.



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