Coronavirus is one of the hottest topics in recent times, with many companies negatively affected. Which industries have been most affected by COVID-19 and have seen the greatest financial losses? Can the effects of the pandemic be recovered?
Unfortunately, due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, many Polish companies have been suspended or have completely disappeared from the market. These data are derived from statistics maintained by company databases that keep track of the status of individual business activities. The detailed analysis was based on March and April, the months that were by far the most difficult economically. The coronavirus meant that the most affected industries were primarily the transportation, tourism and hospitality, as well as those related to culture and the arts. Just behind them are the education industries and sports-related activities. Physiotherapists, cosmetologists, hairdressers and restaurateurs face equally serious problems to stay on the market. The least business closures have been reported in the dental industry. The effects caused by the epidemiological crisis are fatal and in most cases irrecoverable.
Most Poles have been forced to stay at home due to the coronavirus and their work has shifted to remote mode. As a result of these changes, some industries have been hit hard, especially those where direct contact with customers was necessary. This includes everyday services, including beauty salons or bars and restaurants, which during this period were only able to provide their services on a takeaway basis. In addition, many people did not even think about traveling, because it was virtually impossible, and thus the tourism and hotel industry was definitely affected, which at the same time was exposed to huge financial losses. The closure of shopping malls also had a negative impact on the sale of various kinds of products, as the entire activity was focused only on online transactions.
When it comes to running and keeping a business afloat in the era of COVID-19, a lot depends on the financial situation of a particular company before the pandemic and the duration of any suspension. An additional factor is the level of severity of the crisis for a given industry and whether a business will be able to return to its previous state once the anti-epidemic restrictions are lifted, but whether the effects of COVID-19 will still be felt.
It’s also worth looking at sole proprietorships, which often have a much lower cost of living, but may find it just as difficult to return to pre-epidemic condition as large companies. According to a survey conducted in April among the self-employed, as many as 46.2% are unable to say whether their company’s situation will return to normal. Second (30.8%) are entrepreneurs who agree that their business will only return to its pre-pandemic state after the holiday season, and only 23% of respondents are confident that their business will return to normal before the vacations.
Currently, there are a number of scenarios about what to expect in the long term. On the optimistic side, the economy will return to normal as soon as the pandemic subsides and will immediately start operating at high speed. Parts of the industry can expect a quick recovery due to the savings made by consumers during the most critical weeks, when only essential purchases were made. This turn of events will allow many companies to make up for the losses of previous months.
A less optimistic scenario is that the risk of a recurrence of the pandemic remains high, making the recession very deep and long-lasting, and the increase in corporate debt so great that there is concern about the solvency of businesses. A lot of entrepreneurs can learn from their mistakes and better prepare for such a situation, but not everyone.
The most negative scenario talks about a huge economic crisis that will bring gigantic losses, which will be hard to cope with, so it will keep getting worse and more companies will be forced to disappear from the market. At this moment it is difficult to predict which hypothesis is the most realistic. Let us not forget that currently the pandemic is still prevailing in many countries and its development may be completely unpredictable.
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