Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Retailers To Hit 'Point Of No Return' This Week

 
By YOURI KEMP
Tribune Business Reporter
ykemp@tribunemedia.net

The Bahamas Federation of Retailers (BFR) yesterday revealed multiple members will reach "the point of no return" and close permanently as early as this week unless curb-side restrictions are lifted.

Tara Morley, its co-president, told Tribune Business that the inability to generate sufficient cash flow to purchase and clear Christmas inventory, due to the Government's present COVID-19 measures, had pushed many merchants to the brink of closure with the festive season less than two months away.

Adding that retailers ranging from "long-standing businesses to entrepreneurial start-ups" had contacted the Federation in the past few days to warn they will cease operations unless the Government removes curb-side limitations this week, Ms Morley warned the situation threatened to create "an unfortunate amount of joblessness" headed into the Christmas period.

Festive sales often account for up to 40-50 percent of a retailer's annual business volumes, generating the cash flow and profits that help to carry them through the remainder of the year, but COVID-19 lockdowns, curfews and restrictions - coupled with depressed consumer spending - mean many will struggle to enjoy their traditional Christmas boost.

"As of today and yesterday, I have had several businesses write in from the Federation that said that unless an announcement is made this week with regard to the curb-side restriction, they will have to shutter their doors permanently. That means I have to furlough my staff and jobs are gone," Ms Morley told this newspaper.  Read more >>