Business

Call for businesses to help shape Peterborough’s economic recovery strategy

A call has been put out for Peterborough businesses to help identify gaps in current support provision and influence the shape of future support from local and national government bodies.

The city’s economic development company, Opportunity Peterborough, Peterborough Positive the Business Improvement District (BID), and Peterborough City Council are working together to understand the impact Covid-19 has had on the city. They are developing their support for businesses to help jump-start the economy after lockdown and are asking for local businesses to give their feedback before 15 May.

Businesses can share their feedback about how the Coronavirus pandemic has affected them by completing a short online survey.

Respondents will be asked about the impact on operations, supply chains, service delivery, financial implications, and what areas they might need support in now, and in the short, and longer term.

Tom Hennessy, chief executive of Opportunity Peterborough, said, “We are at a critical juncture – we’re over the peak and we need to get the right support in place to support the economic recovery as lockdown is eased. To give the city the best chances for recovery we need businesses to share what support they need – whether it’s adapting and optimising new working practices, meeting changing demand from consumers, right down to finance and cashflow.

“Opportunity Peterborough has been contacting members of our Bondholder Network to understand the impact on their businesses, but we also want to take account of the needs of businesses right across the city. Peterborough has a diverse economy and although there will be shared challenges among businesses, we also need to meet support needs to address nuances in, supply chains, knowledge sharing and sector specific challenges.”

Mark Broadhead, Chair of Peterborough Positive added, “Many businesses in the city centre are already adapting to lockdown, but it’s really important there is a safety net to support businesses facing the tough challenges ahead. We have begun discussions around what measures will be needed to protect visitors and staff as and when lockdown measures are lifted, but we also need to identify where government or Council intervention may be needed to make the transition as smooth as possible.

“Additional support around things like operations, marketing and finance are also needed and the more information businesses can provide on what information and advice they need, the better chance we have of reinvigorating the economy.”

Councillor David Seaton, cabinet member for finance at Peterborough City Council, said, “Peterborough has a robust economy, but Covid-19 has presented an unprecedented set of challenges. By sharing the issues and opportunities they are facing, businesses will give the city the best chance for recovery as we can put the right support in place at the earliest opportunity.” 

The survey will be open until 15 May and can be accessed here: http://bit.ly/35CNqOz

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