COVID-19 has been and continues to be the most globally disruptive event of our generation. It has sparked fears and behaviours that have not been seen before as businesses prepare to operate in this temporary environment.
Over the coming weeks we aim to provide you with insight through the real sorties of our clients, as to how some sectors are reacting to the challenges. We have been speaking to our trusted contacts to understand what this means for their business so far, what they are focusing on now and the factors that they are considering for the future.
Below are some of points they have shared. We hope that this unlocks some thought provoking questions that your own business might be grappling with or provides you with some points to consider as you push forward through your business continuity programmes.
- Food production clients have seen demand increase dramatically as the nation’s stockpiling fears continue to drive unprecedented behaviours. However, the logistics required to meet the newly enforced government protocols will make it difficult to physically getting factory workers to meet the level of demand, whilst maintaining food safety where scrutiny has increase.
- Construction is having mixed fortunes; while some work continues on existing projects and tendering for new business is ongoing. Some projects have been delayed up to 6/12 weeks due to supply and distribution problems as a result of COVID-19. Firms are working with legal teams to ensure their contracts are fit for purpose and contain a Force Majeure clause.
- Pharma are at the forefront, their focus is on people and staffing right now, growth prospects come second. Getting the products into the hands of the consumer is primary objective. The sector is mindful of (but financial modelling has not been conducted) what the effect of stock piling will be and how that will unwind once the crisis has passed.
- Investment sector, amidst the backdrop private equity is now stepping back whilst alternative finance is reassessing current loans and reducing capital outflows. M&A activity may pick up as businesses look to competitors that appear cheap and may consolidate.
- Retail and various other business are wondering what the funding and liquidity burdens will be of the COVID-19 crisis. In addition, whilst the Government is creating mechanisms to help business, what does this look like and what resources they will need to invest to unlock it, such as research, creating business plans, applications etc. Furthermore, what do businesses do right now, with the likes of Laura Ashley collapsing into administration. With not essential business being forced to close, how many will actually be opening their doors again in the future?
Above is some of the feedback that we have received from clients and trusted sources. We can see that different business sectors are reacting differently, based on their requirements, working environment and business conditions.
- Legal – what are your terms of business with your existing client base stating, is there room to manoeuvre on contracts/projects, do they cover Force Majeure, are you liable?
- Financial modelling – If your business demand is high as a result of COVID-19, what does this look like once the crisis surpasses? How will it affect financial forecasts, what will behaviours look like after COVID-19?
- Financial aid – this is an evolving picture, what does it look like to business and how can you get access to it. What resources will you need to commit to prepare the application and research.
We appreciate that this is uncharted territory for all. At Infinity International, we aim to provide you with some insight of the challenges that various verticals are facing whilst providing you with some content that evokes some questions of your own. We believe that sharing this knowledge with you we can help businesses navigate through these difficult times.
We welcome feedback and comments as well as suggestions on topics you would like to read more about.
Please participate in our survey here, we aim to unlock insights and share the knowledge, reactions, and measures from different businesses across industries in the UK, we will then share this collective insight.