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Marlborough Express - 2021-07-23

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Toll on small business

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been the toughest I’ve ever had in business,’’ Botica said. Two months before Covid emerged the business had entered into its biggest capital investment, $1.2 million, in moving and expanding Cafe´ Hanoi and opening a fourth restaurant, Ghost Street. The latter’s opening was delayed seven months. ‘‘When the bank gets anxious you have to do more work to show them you are on top of things.’’ They had to meet the bank more frequently, make arrangements with suppliers and borrow money from family. Sleeplessness, worry, anxiety and exhaustion was rife in the industry. ‘‘Some of us are actually starting to come out of it. I’m on top of my sleep now so that’s always a win,’’ Botica said. Two surveys of small business owners show Botica and Mcgeorge are not alone. Business Mentors New Zealand’s recent survey of more than 1000 small business owners revealed seven out of 10 were feeling stressed and anxious with nearly half of them saying they were burnt out. Just over a quarter reported feeling depressed. Business management platform MYOB says its 2021 Business Monitor revealed that a third of SME owners and managers (36 per cent) had experienced a mental health condition since starting or taking over their current business. That compared with 31 per cent in an MYOB survey in late 2019.

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