Change & Adapt

22nd September 2020

Posted In: Entrepreneurship

A recent survey from cross-border business body InterTradeIreland reveals that cash flow and maintaining social distancing are among the biggest hurdles facing businesses as the economy starts to open up again.

Designated Officer Aidan Gough says, “As the economy awakes from the Covid-19 lockdown, there is a growing realisation that the contours of the landscape have changed, in some cases irrevocably. For many, success will depend on an ability to change and to adapt quickly to new market realities such as the accelerated impact of digital platforms and technology.  In that regard, our research shows that smaller businesses are finding it tougher to adapt.”

Aidan Keogh, InterTradeIreland

As InterTradeIreland launches a new campaign to encourage cross-border businesses to avail of its assistance Aidan explains, “We want to reach as many businesses as possible. We have new supports that can help firms steer through this difficult time. The personal experience of many SMEs shows that those who assess where their vulnerabilities may lie and adjust quickly – are more likely to build a sustainable future in the long-term.”

One example of this is Simply Fit Food in Co. Louth. The business which makes healthy snacks for people with busy lifestyles applied for InterTradeIreland’s E-Merge support. The funding of up to €2,800 helps businesses develop their online sales and e-commerce solutions.

Co-founder Evelyn Garland says, “I think at the start of the pandemic it was so hard to predict what was going to happen.  Covid-19 had a massive impact on our business, because the grab and go market essentially disappeared. It was clear though, that all the action was happening online.

InterTradeIreland’s E-Merge programme helped to re-vamp the website and really develop the brand further. It has set us up well for more on-line growth.”

Aidan Gough says, “There has been a big demand for a lot of our services. We have also launched the Emergency Business Solutions programme, which gives SMEs access to professional advice up to the value of €2,250. This gives businesses crucial breathing room to address challenges that Covid-19 has thrown up. So far, among the top concerns for firms is advice around cash flow. The funding can also be used to deal with a range of issues, such as human resources and health and safety too. It can also help businesses diversify.”

“Don’t forget, against this backdrop we also have the on-going UK post-Brexit trade talks as the clock ticks down to January 1st 2021.”

“If you are a cross-border trader and are concerned about the impact of Covid-19 or are unsure about how Brexit may affect your business, we urge you to get in touch with InterTradeIreland. We can help you move forward,” concludes Aidan.

Pictured: Co-Founders Luke Judge & Evelyn Garland of Simply Fit Food.