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Elton John and Ed Sheeran might be the bookies favourite for the Christmas no. 1 spot this year, but in a heart-warming plea to support small businesses this Christmas, a Small Business Choir has re-recorded Wizzard’s ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday’… because for small businesses owners, they really do need it to be Christmas everyday.
The Small Business Choir, commissioned by Simply Business, features 16 small businesses from across the country, plus prominent business figures including Tony Robinson OBE, author and vocal champion of the self-employed and The Apprentice Winner and founder of Dough Bakehouse Carina Lepore. Lord Sugar is a lead investor in Dough Bakehouse, which opened its second branch in Beckenham mid-pandemic.
It comes as a recent study by Simply Business reveals one in five (16%) small business owners don’t expect their business to survive 2022 unless they have a bumper festive trading period this year.
Furthermore, well over two in five (43%) are still struggling to recover financially from the impact of Covid-19 – which has cost SME owners over £126.6bn in lost earnings – a huge hole in the books of small businesses.
The festive season is a lifeline for SMEs, with more than a third (36%) making over a 20% of their annual revenue in this crucial window. But worryingly, despite the importance placed on this period, over a quarter (27%) of small business owners say they’re ‘not confident’ about their business’s chances this December.
John Lashley, Owner of Brooklyn Brownie Co in Northampton commented: “Small businesses are extremely important as they bring so much variety to an area and boost the economy by employing people. Small businesses really are the heartbeat of the economy. And so it’s extremely important to shop local as you are personally helping people pay their mortgage, their bills, feed their family, and support their business overall. It’s been a tough 18-24 months and Christmas is one of the busiest times of the year – a lot of small businesses will make a significant amount of their revenue at Christmas, so it’s an important message to shop local this year.”
Carina Lepore, The Apprentice winner and founder of Dough Bakehouse commented: “Small businesses need it to be Christmas everyday. This year is vital for small business owners. The pandemic has been tough on us all and for business owners who rely on the Christmas period for a chunk of their annual revenue, it’s more important now than ever before. I’m proud to support this plea and hope to see festive shoppers choosing to buy local this Christmas.”
Alan Thomas, UK CEO at Simply Business, comments: “The festive classic ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday’ will be played up and down the country in the coming weeks, as the UK enjoys a period of well-earned festive cheer. But the feeling among small business owners is likely to be rather more sombre this Christmas.
“For a third of small businesses, Christmas accounts for over 20% of their annual revenue – for many owners, they quite simply need it to be Christmas everyday if they’re to continue their recovery from a devastating two years.
“They’ve faced the pandemic head-on, navigated supply shortages, and adapted to a new normal. They’ve shown resilience in abundance and done all they can to stay afloat. But without a strong Christmas trading period, one in five small businesses will permanently close in 2022.
“It’s vital we support small businesses this Christmas. And if anything, the pandemic has served as another reminder that we should be supporting them all year round. They’re the lifeblood of our local communities, and with close to six million of them in the UK, together they contribute trillions of pounds in turnover. They are quite simply the backbone of the economy.
“This Christmas needs to right the ship after a challenging two years, and set them up for recovery in 2022. But small businesses are for life, not just for Christmas. So at Simply Business we felt compelled to highlight this by teaming up with a host of brilliant small business owners to re-record the Christmas classic ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday’.”
Some of the small business owners who sang their heart out to save Christmas were:
For more on how important this Christmas is to small businesses, see the full report here.
To learn how Covid-19 has impacted small businesses, see our report: The Impact of Covid 19 on UK small businesses
Data: Survey of 587 small business owners from across the UK, conducted November 2021
How did we calculate the £126.6 billion figure?
March 2021: 94% of SMEs surveyed say Covid-19 will affect them financially
We asked small businesses how much they estimate the coronavirus pandemic will cost them in total, including lost earnings, jobs and revenue. The weighted average of this cost is £22,461
94% of the total no. of SMEs in the UK (6 million), multiplied by average projected total cost (£22,461) = £126,680,040,000.
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