NTIA Says 20% of Festive Trade Lost with Over 50% of Businesses Fighting for Survival

Following the Festive Period the NTIA have carried out a Flash Poll of 200 Members to evaluate the impact of the current crises on NTE Businesses.

New Year’s Eve performed better than expected with businesses trading 16% down on 2019, but across December businesses lost a fifth of their trade due to consumers having less disposable income, train strikes and cost inflation.

53.7% of respondents did not make enough profit to cover cash reserve requirements for the slower periods, with 20.9% Barely making enough, meaning that over 50% of businesses only had enough cash reserves to survive for up to 2 months as strike action escalates.

Many businesses are now reliant heavily on the March Budget to survive and gain some financial headroom to continue trading in 2023, with the main asks from businesses being a VAT reduction across the board, energy cap freeze, alcohol duty freeze and business rates extension.

NTIA Flash Poll on Tuesday 3rd January 2023 – 206 Responses:
• As a percentage (-/+), how did your business trade on NYE this year compared to 2019?
16% Down on NYE
• As a percentage (-/+), How did you perform in December 2022, compared to 2019?
21% Down Across Festive Period
• Did you make enough profit to fulfil your cash reserve requirements during the festive period to see your business through the slower months of 2023?
53.7% of respondents did not make enough profit to cover cash reserve requirements for the slower periods – 20.9% Barely made enough & 25.4% Did make enough.
• How long will you survive under the current operating cost conditions with your current cash reserves?
35.8% of respondents believe they will survive over 4 months / 25.4% Between 1-2 Months / 23.9% Between 2-3 Months / 10.4% Between 3-4 Months / 4.5% Up to 1 Month
• What Impacted your trade the most during the festive period?
46.3% of respondents felt trade had been impacted by customers having less disposable income / 26.9% from cost inflation / 16.4% Industrial Action & 6% Weather.
• Which of the following interventions in the March Budget from the Government would have the greatest impact on the survival of your business?
85.9% VAT Reduction 85.9% VAT Reduction 60.9% Energy Freeze Cap 28.1% Alcohol Duty Freeze

Michael Kill CEO NTIA Says:
“Following a flash poll of members, over 50% of businesses have not been able to build the necessary cash reserves required to survive early 2023, with over 50% of respondents suggesting that they only have enough to survive the next 2 months, as night time economy businesses see a 20% drop in trade across the Christmas period.”

“With operating costs continuing to increase, Rent & VAT due in January and the media talking about the Government halving the current energy subsidy scheme we are faced with a challenging Q1 2023, with many trying to find a pathway through the uncertainty.”

“It is clear that inflationary pressures, both business and domestic, have caused the most damage, with Industrial action impacting cities and large towns reliant on consumer mobility at night.”

“This is one of the biggest challenges the industry has faced, for many a greater crisis than the pandemic, with many businesses being left on the edge trying to survive.”

“We will not accept that there will be casualties of this crisis, and urge the Government to be clear with its intentions on energy and the coming March budget before its too late.”