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43% of hospitality and retail businesses want support grants and loans from Budget

43% of hospitality and retail businesses want support grants and loans from Budget

Research by Epos Now finds that more than half of its customers agree with the exit roadmap timeline, but believe more direct financial support is required to make it a success  

NORWICH, 2nd March 2021 – More than four-in-ten (43%) retail and hospitality businesses want to see the Chancellor prioritise an extension of Coronavirus business loans and grants in the Spring Budget, new research has found. 

The survey, conducted by Epos Now, the global software and payments technology company among 15,000 of its UK retail and hospitality customers, also found that most (52%) agreed with the timetable1 for the easing of lockdown restrictions recently announced by the government, but almost all will require additional support in order to make a success of their business.  When asked what they’d most want the Chancellor to provide in his Budget, more than two fifths (43%) said more loans and grants to help them get back on their feet, but 24% said they need an extension of the current 5% VAT cut, which is scheduled to end on 31st March. Nearly a fifth (18%) want to see the government continue with furlough arrangements to support jobs in hospitality and retail. 

“As our research shows, the so-called ‘restart grants’ mentioned by the Treasury over the weekend would be a much-needed lifeline for retail and hospitality businesses, many of which have been relying on the current monthly grant system to just stay above the water,” said Charlie Wright, director, at Epos Now. “However, even when these businesses are allowed to re-open, social distancing requirements will mean they simply can’t serve the number of customers they did before. Staff wages are the most costly outgoing for most of these businesses, and should they only be able to bring home half of their usual takings, grants must be coupled with other support initiatives including an extension to the furlough scheme during this transitional period”. 

1This allows for pubs and restaurants to open for outdoor sales from 12th April and indoor sales from 17th May.

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