When competitors turn allies, is it businesses that thrive?
See how rival accounting firms came together in record time to help businesses facing adversity.
The COVID-19 pandemic turned many economies upside down. In Canada, it had a profound impact. There are 1.2 million small businesses (less than 99 employees) in Canada, which equates to 98% of all employee-owned businesses in the country. When the pandemic began, more than half of these businesses experienced a significant revenue drop. It was estimated that as many as 33% of these companies would run out of money within one month, with an additional 25% needing financial assistance within two months.
To help offset the financial burden placed on these businesses, Canadian federal and provincial governments quickly set up support programs, including wage subsidies, rent assistance, special interest loans and emergency relief programs. While these programs were designed to help Canadian businesses survive the economic impacts of COVID-19, navigating these programs was challenging. Business owners struggled to understand each program’s qualification criteria and application processes. To further complicate the situation, many of these small businesses did not have dedicated accountants on staff to offer guidance.
As the Federal government and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce heard these frustrations, they knew they needed to act quickly to offer an informational bridge to close the gap between the Federal and Provincial support programs and the small businesses being matched with the best options to fit their needs.