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Businesses count their massive losses in lockdown

Article image for Businesses count their massive losses in lockdown

Small businesses throughout Brisbane are hanging in by a thread as lockdown forced owners to close their doors.

CEO of the National Retail Association Dominique Lamb told Deborah Knight the potential impact of this lockdown is unknown.

The first lockdown, which caused an industry loss of $1 billion in March 2020, is no indication Ms Lamb said, noting “JobKeeper was still in place”.

“It could be quite considerable, depending on how long it goes for.”

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Neil Breen this morning heard from numerous struggling business owners forced to close their doors by the snap lockdown.

Brisbane Broncos legend and Hoppy’s Car Wash owner Chris Johns called in, telling Neil Breen he is “pouring money down the sink”.

“The government don’t suffer when they make these snap decisions,” he said.

“They don’t go get their pay cut down.

“The impact they have on these small businesses is terrifying.”

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Olympic swimmer and Coming Up Roses owner Hayley Lewis told Neil she’s struggling to help her staff.

“I feel responsible for their livelihood,” she said.

“The whole of last year, Scott Morrison said shops like mine were essential to the community.

“We’ve already purchased stock for our store to sell and we haven’t paid our suppliers yet.”

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Brisbane Premier Limo Services owner Peter Kennedy told Neil he’s struggling to keep his business afloat after bookings dropped by two-thirds throughout COVID.

“This year, we started off slowly but March was starting to upsurge and bookings were coming in,” he said.

“I’ve lost $2000 in three days.

“We’re on life support here in small business and I don’t know if we’re going to keep surviving if this keeps up.”

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Orbit World Travel Director Michael Chase Smith told Neil business travellers have lost confidence, with even a Qantas executive cancelling her flight from Sydney to Brisbane.

“This is just savaging things further,” Mr Smith said.

“I really don’t think some of the people making these decisions have any ideas of how to manage this properly.

“They go straight for the sledgehammer.”

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Olympia Kwitowski later heard restaurants in the CBD have been forced to close for the next week.

Casual workers are set to be left without any income on no notice.

 

Image: Getty

Neil Breen & Deborah Knight
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