Weekly Digest – 8 July 2020

Hello again – welcome to the latest edition of our Weekly Digest. Read on for this week’s update.

New Zealand to Limit Returning Citizens

As the COVID-19 pandemic worsens globally, there has been rapid growth in the number of Kiwis coming home. Recently, stricter border controls were introduced, including a mandatory 14-day quarantine and COVID-19 tests for those entering the country. This resulted in quarantine facilities filling up, with nearly 6,000 people in 28 managed isolation facilities.

In order to limit the flow of people returning home, while the government is scaling up more spaces to manage demand, Air New Zealand will not take new bookings for three weeks. Currently, the country has 22 active COVID-19 cases, all from returning New Zealanders, with no known community transmission.

Manage the COVID-19 Impact and Plan for Recovery

The Regional Business Partner Network gives business owners access to advice and resources on business continuity planning, finance and cashflow management, HR issues, and sector-specific concerns amid the COVID-19 crisis. You can find more details here.

If your business has been hit by the pandemic and you’re looking for ways to adapt, get in touch with us. We’ll help you take stock of where your business is at and identify areas to improve.

Businesses showing resilience in the face of adversity

Businesses have taken a hit over the previous months due to COVID-19, but some innovative companies in New Zealand found the silver lining. Below are some of the most creative ways businesses adapted to this unprecedented crisis:

  • A brewery made 1,000 liters of hand sanitisers using the distillery it had been using to make gin and whisky.
  • A supermarket has been trialling a virtual check-in for customers, where shoppers send a text to be put into a queue and are sent a reply when it’s their turn to shop– making social distancing easier.
  • A retailer has been trialling drive-through shopping, which will allow access to orders made through an online platform.
  • An online restaurant table booking website has launched a new service that enables customers to click-and-collect meals from restaurants.
  • A car rental business transformed its usual services by launching an app that pairs its rental cars with its staff to perform personal grocery shopping for customers.

You can read their inspiring stories here. If you want to talk about your specific situation, please get in touch with us and we’ll help you work out a strategic plan to come through stronger than ever and build a successful future-proof business.

Government Loan Applications Extended

The government is providing one-off loans to small businesses employing 50 or fewer full-time employees, sole traders, and self-employed individuals, which have been affected by COVID-19 to support their cashflow needs.

Through the Small Business Cash Flow Loan Scheme, you can get financial assistance of up to $100,000 and an additional $1800 per equivalent full-time employee. Repayments are not required for the first two years, but if the loan is paid back within a year, there will be no interest.

The government has again extended the loan scheme meaning it will be available until the end of the year. For those who haven’t applied for this government loan yet, you can check your eligibility here or you can get in touch with us so we can assist you with your application.

Application for Wage Subsidy Extension Still Ongoing

Applications for the Wage Subsidy Extension are open until 1 September 2020. This initiative is aimed at supporting employers, including the self-employed, who have been significantly hit by COVID-19. Under this scheme, the wages of your employees will be covered over an 8-week period.

To be eligible for this financial support, your business must have had at least a 40% revenue loss for a continuous 30-day period in the last 40 days before the application. Eligible employers must also reapply for the Wage Subsidy Extension once their 12-week Wage Subsidy has ended. You can read through the guidelines and apply online here. If you have any questions about this government program, contact us today and we’ll talk you through it.

Contact Tracing

Everyone is encouraged to keep track of who you’ve seen and where you’ve been through the NZ COVID Tracer app in order to assist with contact tracing if necessary. You can help customers in maintaining their “digital diary” by displaying a QR code poster.

Get your QR Code Poster

Businesses can get their official NZ COVID Tracer QR code posters through the new self-service webform to support contact tracing with the NZ COVID Tracer app. A valid New Zealand driver’s licence is required to use this service. However, if you have a huge number of locations or do not have a driver’s licence, you can email a completed template to the Ministry of Health. More information can be found here.

Get in touch

Contact us if you have any questions or want to discuss the next steps for your business.