Two-thirds of North East businesses struggling due to cost of living

Just 38% of businesses said they had seen coronavirus pandemic recovery, and 62% say their finances are stretched and may affect their business

More than two-thirds of businesses in the North East are said to be suffering from rising costs, with pressure applying to all parts of the business chain.

For the first time, 68% of businesses have said they are facing pressure across all parts of their business, from supply chain to energy, wages and rent.

New research from eBay UK has shown that the rise in the cost of living has had an adverse effect on businesses, that are struggling to invest in skills and training.

Small business owners have been heavily hit, with 62% of those surveyed saying their finances were stretched and many feared it would have a knock-on effect for their business.

More than a quarter of polled businesses have worries over their future, with North East businesses citing rising costs and inflation as reservations to investing.

Half said a lack of investment could force them to let people go, while 52% said that a lack of investment could close their business for good.

Businesses in the North East were also cited as slower in their post-COVID recovery, with only 38% saying they were beginning to recover, as opposed to London’s 61% or Northern Ireland’s 75%.

Local businesses have said that the coronavirus pandemic and cost of living increase has made it difficult to bounce back

Murray Lambell, general manager of eBay UK, said: “Our research shows that businesses in the North East are sadly still grappling with the impact of COVID, while at the same time facing the astronomical inflation that is set to hamper all parts of society for some time.

The research comes along with the recent Business Roadshow hosted by eBay, where attending businesses received the opportunity to apply for grants and support packages.

The total value of the packages was listed at £1 million.