MONTREAL, October 7, 2020 / CNW Telbec / – Most small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) are looking to the future and taking steps to prepare for the future despite COVID-19, according to the BDC study, “The answer: how entrepreneurs are adapting to the pandemicThe study identifies five priorities for entrepreneurs as they plan for the future, as well as how the pandemic has changed the habits of Canadians.

“Canadian entrepreneurs are looking to the future and showing ingenuity to adapt to the challenges of our new business environment,” says Pierre Cléroux, Vice-President, Research and Chief Economist at BDC. “Our results show that adopting business practices that take into account new consumer and labor trends can put SMEs back on the path to prosperity. As a second wave looms, the recovery may be choppy, but we We are confident in the ability of SMEs to adapt as the situation evolves. “

Planning for the future: five priorities for entrepreneurs
The study offers practical advice for business leaders relaunching their businesses and finds that entrepreneurs are adjusting to the health crisis with the following five priorities in mind:

  1. Putting the finances in order (39%) by reducing operating costs, controlling cash flow and implementing a back-up plan;
  2. Leverage technology (27%) to remain competitive;
  3. Focus on teleworking (25%) to allow physical distancing, but also to meet the demands of employees; According to a study by the marketing and survey firm Léger, 80% of workers who have work from a distance during the containment plan to continue practicing it;
  4. Sell ​​online (24%) and focusing on multiple areas, such as website improvement, social media activity and targeted promotional campaigns;
  5. Relaunch growth (23%) by diversifying the customer base and offering to ensure the solidity of businesses. Additionally, entrepreneurs confident in overcoming the crisis plan to change their supply chains (11%), while 10% of SME executives say the COVID crisis has prompted them to increase the number of their local suppliers.

A new business environment
The pandemic has changed the habits of Canadians:

  • 83% are willing to pay more for local products;
  • 56% of consumers did more online shopping since the start of the crisis;
  • 50% are concerned about health effects the products they plan to buy;
  • 25% want reduce personal consumption.

Some business trends are new, while others have accelerated, such as increase investment in technology. “While the situation remains uncertain, from Canada entrepreneurs are in solution mode. Adapting to this new environment could be essential for small businesses to prosper in the years to come, ”adds Cléroux.

The BDC study is based on literature published since the start of the pandemic in March, as well as interviews with academic, consultant and marketing research experts. The data presented comes from two surveys conducted by BDC among 1,000 executives of Canadian SMEs and 2,000 consumers in May and June 2020.

The report is published as part of this year’s edition of BDCMC Small Business Week (SBW) under the theme “Forging the Way Forward”. Taking place from October 18 to 25, SBW is an annual celebration of entrepreneurship that BDC has hosted for over 40 years. This year’s edition will reward entrepreneurial resilience and innovation in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and the blockages that have resulted from it.

Serving Canadian entrepreneurs facing the challenges of COVID-19
BDC was one of the first organizations to roll out additional measures to support entrepreneurs during the current health crisis, providing better access to capital, including working capital loans, flexible terms and payment deferrals, a interim financing for companies financed by venture capital and several tools deployed by the Council. Service team. The investments that BDC has made in digital solutions over the past few years have been a key factor in helping the bank respond more quickly to a high volume of financing requests. BDC has pivoted its operations to provide additional liquidity and advice to entrepreneurs. In collaboration with participating financial institutions, BDC COVID direct support loans totaled $ 2.4 billion. For more information on available BDC support, visit bdc.ca coronavirus.

About BDC
BDC is the bank for Canadian entrepreneurs. It provides access to financing and consulting services to help Canadian businesses grow and succeed. Its investment arm, BDC Capital, offers a wide range of venture capital solutions. For more than 75 years, BDC’s sole raison d’être has been to support entrepreneurs in all sectors and at all stages of growth. For more information and to view more than 1,000 free tools, articles and testimonials from entrepreneurs, visit bdc.ca.

SOURCE Business Development Bank of Canada

For further information: BDC Media Relations, [email protected], 1-844-625-8321

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