How Restaurant Owners Are Keeping Their Doors Open During the Pandemic

How Restaurant Owners Are Keeping Their Doors Open During the Pandemic

It would be tough to find a business that hasn’t been negatively impacted by the pandemic. Restaurant businesses are among the hardest hit.

Ironically, although the restaurant business can be extremely competitive, owners are sharing information with the goal of helping each other survive.

One “hub” for sharing and updating information has been the Corona Virus Response Kit for Restaurants. Jim Williams, CEO of MustHaveMenus, talked to SBT about the evolution of the response kit.

First, most notably, by necessity the response kit is constantly evolving.

“We launched it in late March, and since then the Best Practices have been constantly evolving,” Williams said. “Restaurants have been united in efforts to keep all their doors open – they’re campaigning, talking to local, regional and state officials.”

“They are saying ‘let us do this,’” Williams said. “They are saying ‘Whatever the restrictions are, we can do it.”

The Response Kit helps owners keep up to date on the “moving target” that is the best practice virus response for restaurants. It’s also a place to get and share ideas about what has worked in a particular restaurant operation.

5 Action Steps to Keep Restaurants Open Amid Pandemic

Here are 5 things a local restaurant owner can do right now which can help keep their doors open amid pandemic restrictions.

1. Use Social Media

“When foot traffic to restaurants was eliminated, everyone had to step up their communication with customers,” Williams said. “Restaurants are scrambling so much just to maintain operations that sometimes there’s no time to kick back, think of strategy.”

“But you have to make that time,” he added. “More than ever, you have to learn to use social media to your advantage.”

2. Allow Pick-up and Offer Delivery

For most restaurants, providing curbside pickup or delivering food was “not their forte,” Williams said.

To adapt, restaurants have to face up to the new operational challenge. They have to get the proper packaging for “mobile” food, including takeout and delivery. For delivery, they need gear to keep the food warm (or cold) while in transit.

3. Safety Practices for Indoor Dining

Williams said he’s saddened in his travels when he sees signs in restaurant windows that read something like “Closed, See You After the Pandemic.” When is “after the pandemic”? That’s the million-dollar question.

“You need signage to direct customers so that they maintain the bottom line 6-foot distancing,” Williams said. “You need signs that instruct them to use the hand washing stations. Requirements are different at various local, regional and state levels.”

4. Update Menus

One of the focuses for Best Practices is that no materials should be shared. That includes menus. Williams said that many restaurants have opted for disposable menus, which are made from low grade, recyclable paper.

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Williams said that restaurants have also used laminated menus, which are then disinfected. Some use QR codes, so that customers can view menus on their cell phones.

All of these are good options and may be best to use as a mix of options.

“Young folks have no problems staring into their phones and reading menus,” Williams said. “Your older clientele may not have adapted to that technology and would prefer to hold and read a menu.”

5. Raise Prices

“Let’s be honest,” Williams said. “Restaurants have extra costs to operate and have to adjust to those extra costs.”

Raising prices can be done strategically. The increases can be small. Months ago, restaurants and other businesses talked of adding a “coronavirus tax” but Williams doesn’t think that’s the best choice.

“We all feel taxed in a million ways,” Williams said. “I don’t think it’s a good idea to name it as an added fee.”

About MustHaveMenus

Williams is the founder of MustHaveMenus, which helps restaurants create menus and marketing materials. Williams described it as a software design tool that helps restaurants create professional products.

“There are thousands of templates – you don’t need to be a professional designer,” Williams said. “It’s more of an empowerment tool, because you can create whatever you need, from menus to signage.”

Williams said that using a standard template isn’t a good fit for most restaurants. To be and look professional, the finished product should communicate the restaurant’s brand and style.

“Every restaurant business is different, with a different style, a different need,” he said. “Many design tools are generic and have been around forever.”

MustHaveMenus allows a restaurant owner to specialize, in every layer of operation, including menus and marketing.

What Some Restaurant Owners Are Doing

  • Lauriann Aladin, of The Manchester Grill in Washington state, uses MustHaveMenus Coronavirus Response Kit and talk to other restaurants frequently to understand ordinances and rules and how others are morphing to stay in business. Aladin compared this to struggling artists supporting each other, “we want to survive, but we also want other restaurants to survive.”  Adin will stick with take-out-only even through the winter.
  • David Forde, of Ocean 60, Atlantic Beach, Florida, uses MustHaveMenus to create 2-3 new menus per week, and is going to touchless menus (which is essential to them continuing in house dining). The touchless menus are done with a QR code posted on the table that customers scan using their smartphones, rather than touching a physical menu. Forde said this has been great for eliminating physical touch or wasting of paper and also saves a ton of time for them in printing menus.


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Negative Impact of Pandemic on Small Business is Weakening

Negative Impact of Pandemic on Small Business is Weakening

Slowly but surely, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic response on American small businesses is weakening.

According to the latest results of the US Census Bureau Small Business Pulse Survey, fewer businesses than ever are reporting that the pandemic creates a very negative effect on their company.

Just 31.8% of small business owners surveyed by the Census Bureau say the reaction to the pandemic is having a “large negative effect” on their operations.

Wait … just?

Negative Impact of Pandemic on Small Business is Weakening

Sure, that figure is still too high for anyone’s liking. And there are still thousands of small businesses reeling from the harshest business restrictions imposed by some states. Restaurants, bars, hotels, and gyms and fitness centers are likely those indicating the pandemic is still having a harsh impact on business.

These businesses truly need a helping hand or two. So, support them at the local level whenever you get a chance.

But let’s look at the bigger picture for a second.

For starters, this year has seemed unending for many small businesses across the U.S. And as we all progress in the pandemic response, we start to see signs like this that things are returning more to the normal we all experienced at the beginning of 2020, when coronavirus wasn’t yet a household name, than it was in the Springtime.

That figure is nearly a full 6% lower than it was back at the end of June when the Census Bureau asked small businesses the same question. And it’s way off the initial responses – by almost 20% – it got back at the end of April when 51.4% said it had a large negative effect.

Rather than having a large negative effect, more businesses are saying the pandemic response is having only a moderately negative effect or little or no effect at all. That can be said for 61.4% of all the small business owners surveyed.

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We see these figures trending in the right direction as most states begin easing restrictions they had in place on businesses, especially in the industries where small businesses generally thrive.

And as more consumers begin to feel safer to leave their homes and get back to regular settings both at work and socially, we should expect these figures to keep moving in a positive direction. The more states relax or remove any restrictions on business activity in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the more we’ll likely see the figures in this survey trend positively.

Adapting Your Business

In addition to getting beyond the restrictions put in place on business operations the further we get from the start of the pandemic, the more options small businesses are offered on how to adjust to the climate.

Every week we’re learning about new technologies and reading inspirational stories on how small businesses across the U.S. are coping with the pandemic.

And as you can see from these latest survey results, the pandemic is actually having a positive effect on their business.

US Census Small Business Pulse – September 10 Results

The US Census Small Business Pulse Survey isn’t some random or politicized poll. Real small business owners are surveyed on a weekly basis. Respondents are chosen from the 2018 Business Register and eligible businesses need to have payroll between 1 and 499 employees.

Survey results are published weekly on a Thursday.



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30 PPP Fraud Prosecutions So Far, and Counting

30 PPP Fraud Prosecutions So Far, and Counting

Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans have aided more than 5 million small business owners, providing a much needed lifeline during the Coronavirus outbreak crisis. The overwhelming majority of business owners are legitimate and will use the money as intended to retain employees and stay operational.

But the PPP program has attracted a few rotten apples. And you won’t believe how rotten they are.

To date, the Justice Department has filed 30 PPP fraud cases. Defendants are charged with bilking taxpayers out of tens of millions of dollars. Luckily, the Feds have recovered a large part of the loan proceeds already.

And what’s been recovered tells a wild tale.

Feds have seized a 2020 Lamborghini Huracan sports car, a Rolex Presidential watch, a 5.73-carat diamond ring, and a diamond bracelet — all purchased with PPP loan money. Other loot includes a Tesla, a 26-foot Pavati Wake Boat, two Rolls-Royces, a Lamborghini Urus, and a Ford F-350 pickup truck.

Authorities also seized cash hoards, froze bank accounts, and recovered other assets.

Some defendants blew taxpayer money on wild spending sprees, including Las Vegas gambling, visits to strip clubs, and day-trading. In one case, a married couple was apprehended at JFK Airport purportedly attempting to flee the country after submitting 18 fraudulent applications.

Every government program attracts a small number of grifters and criminals. And the DOJ has made it a priority to root them out. On March 16, 2020, Attorney General William Barr directed all 94 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices to prioritize investigating and prosecuting PPP loan fraud cases.

PPP Loan Program Results

On March 27, 2020 Congress passed and President Trump signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act — or CARES Act. It authorized the Paycheck Protection Program. PPP is a low-interest, forgivable loan program designed to help small businesses and self-employed individuals.

In an unusual example of government speed, the Small Business Administration started accepting loan applications just a week later on April 3, 2020. Through July 24, the SBA has approved 5,005,261 loans, constituting $519,505,881,228, demonstrating its success.

The majority of the funds are going to help the nation’s 31 million small businesses, there’s no doubt about it. The number of fraud prosecutions is very small by comparison.

30 PPP Fraud Cases – So Far

Could these prosecutions involve nothing more than paperwork mistakes? They do not appear to be honest mistakes. All appear to involve egregious circumstances — assuming the government ultimately proves the facts. Some defendants actually were under indictment for other charges at the time of applying for loans. Others hid their criminal past.

Here’s a rundown of the 30 PPP loan fraud cases to date with some of the lurid details alleged:

Two Men, Identity Theft and a Conspiracy (Rhode Island – May 5)

  • David A. Staveley, aka Kurt D. Sanborn, and David Butziger were charged with conspiring to seek over $530,000 in PPP money. It’s alleged they falsely claimed to have dozens of employees at 4 different businesses, including a restaurant neither owned. They allegedly discussed their fraud in email and one assumed the identity of his own brother. Special Agent in Charge Joseph R. Bonavolonta of the FBI’s Boston Field Office said in a statement, “Thankfully we were able to stop them before taxpayers were defrauded.”

Texas Engineer (Texas – May 13)

  • Shashank Rai, an engineer from Beaumont, is charged with multiple counts of fraud and false statements to the SBA for seeking more than $10 million in PPP funds. He allegedly claimed to have 250 employees when there is no record of any in his business, Rai Family LLC. Court documents allege that handwritten notes recovered from his trash describe how he planned to use $3 million of the money for personal investments.

Reality TV Personality (Georgia – May 13)

  • “Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta” star Maurice Fayne was indicted on fraud charges over a $3,725,500 PPP loan application for his company, Flame Trucking. Fayne allegedly claimed he had 107 employees and submitted forged bank statements. It’s alleged he then blew the money on a Rolex Presidential watch, a 5.73 carat diamond ring and other jewelry. He also allegedly used the money to pay $50,000 for restitution in a previous fraud case, $40,000 in back child support, $139,000 to lease a Rolls Royce Wraith — and $230,000 to associates who helped him run a Ponzi scheme. When arrested, he had almost $80,000 in cash at his home and $9,400 in his pocket, authorities claim.

East Texas Man and the Online Name Generator (Texas – May 19)

  • Samuel Yates of Maud, Texas is charged with fraudulently applying for $5 million with two different lenders. He claimed to have 400 employees, but actually had zero. The complaint claims Yates used a name generator on the Internet to create names of fake employees. He also allegedly submitted forged tax documents.

Manhattan Businessman (New York – May 21)

  • Muge Ma, a/k/a “Hummer Mars,” a Chinese national residing in Manhattan, was arrested on charges of trying to obtain over $20 million in PPP and EIDL money. Ma is alleged to have falsely represented to the SBA and five financial institutions that his companies had hundreds of employees when he was the only employee. He also allegedly was involved in a scheme claiming to represent the New York State Government in procuring COVID-19 test kits.

Hollywood Film Producer (California – May 22)

  • William Sadleir, the ousted head of Aviron Pictures, was charged with wire and bank fraud in connection with a $1.7 million PPP loan. He allegedly used some of the money to pay off $80,000 in personal credit cards and a $40,000 car loan. Sadleir was Executive Producer on films like Serenity, starring Matthew McConaughey. In an unrelated matter the SEC charged Sadleir with allegedly defrauding investors of $13.8 million through Aviron.

Lyft Software Engineer (Washington – May 22)

  • Baoke Zhang, a software engineer at ride share company Lyft, is charged with wire and bank fraud. He allegedly created fake technology companies to obtain $1.5 million in funds. U.S. Attorney Brian T. Moran said in a statement, “I am pleased that the systems designed to detect and deny fraudulent payments caught his scheme before federal funds went out the door.”

Man on Parole (Virginia – May 29)

  • Joseph Cherry II of Virginia was indicted on 10 counts of COVID fraud and faces 10 to 30 years of prison time on each count. Cherry was on supervised release in an unrelated federal case when he applied to the SBA program. It is alleged he got over $190,000 in proceeds and managed to withdraw cash or cashier’s checks for $140,000. “Providing false statements to gain access to SBA’s programs will be aggressively investigated by our office,” said Hannibal Ware, Inspector General of the U.S. Small Business Administration, in a statement.

Walmart Project Manager (Oklahoma – June 4)

  • Benjamin Hayford is charged with fraud for seeking about $4.4 million in PPP financing. He allegedly certified that his business was operating as of February 15, 2020 (a requirement of the law) and had 247 employees. Prosecutors say a search of his email account showed he didn’t even set up a company until a few days before applying in April. At the time of his arrest Hayford was a Project Manager for Walmart. The retail giant suspended him and stated the charges were unrelated to Walmart.

Auto Repair Shop Owner (California – June 5)

  • Geoffrey M. Palermo of Novato faces charges of wire fraud and making false statements. The former manager of the San Francisco Hilton allegedly embezzled from the hotel in a kickback scheme going back to 2013. After leaving the hotel he opened GMP Cars, an auto repair shop. In April he allegedly obtained a PPP loan of $1.7 million by falsely certifying that GMP Cars had employees for whom it paid salaries and payroll taxes. In fact, according to the criminal complaint, Palermo used company funds for lavish personal expenses including a Ferrari racing car, leaving the business in financial distress.

IT Company Business Owner (Illinois – June 16)

  • Rahul Shah of Evanston is charged with bank fraud and making false statements to a financial institution. He allegedly applied for $441,000 under the Federal Paycheck Protection program for several companies. The allegations say he submitted fake IRS documentation. Several individuals he allegedly submitted payroll documentation for said they never worked for his company, per investigators.

Austin High Roller (Texas – June 18)

  • Michael George McQuarn, 51, of Austin, is charged with with fraudulently receiving over $2 million in SBA loans for two fictitious companies, Vantastic Voyages, LLC and Happy Days Movers, LLC. McQuarn allegedly used the money for personal purposes including buying a 26-foot Pavati Wake Boat and a Rolls Royce.

IT Services Company Owner (Massachusetts – June 22)

  • Elijah Majak Buoi, president of Sosuda Tech LLC, is charged with fraudulently applying for over $13 million in PPP aid. Buoi allegedly misrepresented how many employees he had and that the United States was their primary residence (required). He ultimately received over $2 million but the government seized $1.98 million from business bank accounts.

Wedding Planner (Texas – June 23)

  • This owner of a wedding planning company is charged with submitting two PPP applications, and claiming to have 120 employees when he actually had none. Fahad Shah got $1.5 million in funds. He allegedly used the money to buy a Tesla car, make personal investments and make his home mortgage payments.

Married Couple Attempting to Flee (Virginia – June 24)

  • The FBI apprehended Monica Jaworska and her husband Tarik Jaafar at JFK Airport allegedly attempting to flee to Poland. The paid are charged with submitting 18 fraudulent Paycheck Protection applications with false payroll tax returns, and receiving $1.4 million in funds. The Feds managed to freeze most of the funds but not before the couple allegedly withdrew $30,000 in cash.

Funeral Director (Texas – June 24)

  • Jase DePaul Gautreaux aka Jase Dixon, a funeral director in Houston, is charged with seeking $13 million in funds and ultimately receiving over $1.6 million. The criminal complaint charges him with false statements to a financial institution, bank fraud and engaging in unlawful monetary transactions. He allegedly submitted applications on behalf of a business that did not exist and for businesses he did not own.

Owner of Private Investigation Firm (Ohio – June 24)

  • Nadine Consuelo Jackson is charged with bank fraud and other charges for seeking forgivable loans in the amount of $1.3 million, $1.2 million and another $46,000 in Economic Injury Disaster funding. She allegedly claimed to have 73 employees at her Dayton private investigation business. Three people she allegedly claimed as employees told investigators they never heard of her company. The bank recalled one loan and the Government seized funds for the other two.

Ophthalmologist Already Under Indictment (New York – June 24)

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  • Apparently one fraud isn’t enough for some people. Meet Goyal, MD, an ophthalmologist in Rye, New York, was under indictment for healthcare fraud. That didn’t stop him from allegedly applying for two PPP loans using different business names. He also allegedly lied certifying he had no pending indictments. Acting U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said, “Goyal allegedly looted over $630,000 in federal funds earmarked for legitimate small businesses in dire financial straits.”

Seattle Doctor (Washington – June 30)

  • Dr. Eric R. Shibley is charged with one count of wire fraud and one count of bank fraud. The complaint alleges he applied several times to get aid totaling $3 million, in the names of businesses with no actual operations. He allegedly lied about his criminal past, and submitted fake tax documents including names of people who did not work for the businesses.

Man Under Indictment (Wisconsin – July 8)

  • Ahmad Kanan, formerly of Madison, is charged with wire fraud and money laundering. He allegedly applied for two loans totaling $119,560 acting as owner of Altin Labs, Inc. The indictment alleges Kanan was under federal indictment on an unrelated matter at the time. He then allegedly transferred $47,000 to his personal checking account.

Trucking Company Owner (Utah – July 8)

  • Hubert Ivan Ugarte of Draper, with the assistance of Lisa Bradshaw Rowberry of Provo are charged with fraudulently obtaining a PPP loan of $210,000. He allegedly lied about not being under criminal charges — he in fact was under indictment for a bribery scheme. After two banks declined, Rowberry allegedly said she would help him re-apply through a friend. Ultimately Ugarte received funds from Transportation Alliance Bank. Ugarte allegedly used funds for past due truck payments to Kenworth instead of required payroll.

Medical Company Owner (Florida – July 10)

  • Carlos Belone is charged with wire fraud and other charges in connection with several fraudulent PPP applications. He allegedly got $22,000 which he then deposited partially into a personal account and partially gave to another company in furtherance of a $5.6 million Medicare kickback scheme.

Construction Company Owner (Washington D.C. – July 13)

  • Oludamilare Olugbuyi is charged with fraudulently obtaining two PPP loans totaling more than $400,000. Allegedly he submitted fake IRS 1099 Forms containing worker social security numbers that were invalid. The complaint claims he submitted a tax return reporting $175,565 income for tax year 2019. However, on April 14, 2020, Olugbuyi allegedly filed a 1040 “non-filer return” reporting $1 in income for 2019 which qualified him to receive a $1,200 economic impact payment.

The Cryptocurrency Investor (Texas – July 14)

  • Joshua Thomas Argires of Houston was arrested on various fraud charges. Argires allegedly filed two fraudulent applications seeking $1.1 million in forgivable funding. One was on behalf of a company called Texas Barbecue and the other called Houston Landscaping. Argires allegedly invested some of the proceeds in a cryptocurrency account and withdrew other funds via ATM transactions.

The Vegas High Roller (California – July 16)

  • It’s easy to take risks on day trading and gambling when you’re using taxpayer money. Andrew Marnell of Los Angeles is charged with bank fraud. He allegedly used aliases to obtain $8.5 million in aid using fake tax filings and falsified records of payroll costs. He allegedly blew through about $200,000 in Las Vegas casinos, where he was caught on surveillance cameras at a Bellagio blackjack table. Authorities also claim he lost $500,000 on risky stock market trades. Wells Fargo previously fired him for embezzlement, according to news reports.

Handmade Entrepreneur (Arkansas – July 16)

  • Ganell Tubbs, the entrepreneur owner of Little Piglet Soap Company and Suga Girl Customs, an Etsy shop, is charged with fraudulently obtaining nearly $2 million in PPP loans. Days later she paid $8,000 on her student loan and then went on a spending spree at Sephora and other retailers, it is alleged.

Ex-Microsoft Executive (Washington – July 23)

  • Mohan Mukand, who used to work for Microsoft and Amazon according to his LinkedIn profile, is charged with submitting 8 PPP applications on behalf of six companies. According to the U.S. Attorneys office, the companies didn’t exist or didn’t have the employees he claimed. Authorities allege he bought a company on the Internet in May with no employees, and then forged documents to claim he had paid millions in payroll taxes in 2019. He allegedly transferred a quarter million dollars of proceeds to his personal brokerage account.

High-Living Florida Man (Florida – July 27)

  • David T. Hines of Miami is charged with fraudulently seeking $13.5 million in PPP money using false statements about various companies’ payroll expenses. He was approved for $3.9 million. Days later he allegedly bought a 2020 Lamborghini Huracan sports car for $318,000. He also allegedly squandered money at luxury retailers and Miami resorts.

Miami Chiropractor (Florida – July 29)

  • Dennis Nobbe, a chiropractor in Miami, is charged with wire fraud, health care fraud, money laundering and conspiracy. He allegedly obtained $200,000 in Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster funds and used the money for personal expenses. Allegations also claim he perpetrated a credit card scam on low-income patients. He allegedly got patients to open credit cards to pay for out-of-pocket medical expenses for services he did not fully render.

Houston Partier (Texas – August 4)

  • Lee Price III is charged with making false statements to a financial institution, wire fraud, bank fraud and engaging in unlawful monetary transactions. He allegedly received over $1.6 million. He then went on a luxury buying blitz acquiring a Lamborghini Urus, a Rolex watch, a 2020 Ford F-350 pickup truck, and real estate — according to allegations. He allegedly squandered thousands at strip clubs and nightclubs.

The DOJ and U.S. Attorneys are using a variety of charges for enforcement, including wire fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1343) and making false statements to the SBA and FDIC-insured banks (18 U.S.C. § 1014). Depending on the charges, penalties could include up to $1 million in fines and up to 30 years in prison, legal experts say.

But of course, the government has to prove the allegations. Justice Department lawyers remind everyone that, “A criminal complaint is merely an allegation and a defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. ”

More Prosecutions on the Horizon

PPP money is still available and the current deadline for applying is August 8, 2020 (unless extended). A total of roughly $649 billion has been authorized by Congress, leaving $130 billion still available for small businesses as of July 24th.

Have we seen the last of PPP fraud prosecutions? No. New ones are being announced weekly. But it’s important to remember that 30 frauds out of 5 million loans is a minuscule number. The overwhelming majority of loans have no allegations of fraud surrounding them.

Still, a June report by the Government Accountability Office found, “there is a significant risk that some fraudulent or inflated applications were approved.” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced that the Treasury Department would review every PPP loan over $2 million. However, the GAO recommended oversight of the more than 4 million smaller loans, also.

The government watchdog also pressed for safeguards and oversight plans to avoid double dipping. There’s a recommendation to audit COVID-19 unemployment benefits paid to workers rehired by employers using PPP loan funds.

Yet to Come: The PPP Forgiveness Process

Another wrinkle is the loan forgiveness process. Millions of small businesses eventually will apply for forgiveness. That’s bound to trigger another round of scrutiny.

In order to get Paycheck Protection loans forgiven and not have to repay the money, small business owners have to show proof that at least 60% of the money was used for payroll and the rest for other permitted expenses. A requirement of forgiveness is that borrowers must rehire or retain workers — and maintain salary levels.

The DOJ has signaled it may also pursue civil penalties not just criminal prosecutions, particularly around loan forgiveness. Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Ethan P. Davis noted in a June 26th speech: “When the borrower is ready to seek forgiveness of the loan, it has to certify that the funds were in fact used to pay costs that are eligible for forgiveness. If an applicant knowingly answers any of these questions falsely, it may face False Claims Act liability.”

This means you have to be just as scrupulous when applying for forgiveness as when you applied for the money initially. The False Claims Act can impose steep financial penalties, including treble damages.

If the PPP debt is not forgiven, the interest rate is very low — 1%. Businesses that have to repay the money get 2 years to repay if funding was issued before June 5. If you got funding after June 5, you have five years to repay. The PPP promissory note you signed will have the terms applicable to you. See the SBA website for updated forgiveness information.

Should Business Owners Be Worried?

It’s a scary thing for legitimate business owners to sign borrower certifications under potential penalties of fines and prison time. The SBA programs have complex rules. It could be easy to trip up innocently.

This has caused some entrepreneurs and business owners to think twice about applying. No one under pressure of this pandemic wants to fumble on a technicality while legitimately trying to pay employees and keep their life’s work afloat. One local businesswoman told me she prayed for two weeks before applying because of her fears over confusing requirements.

Representatives of the Department of Justice say honest owners acting in good faith shouldn’t worry. Stephen J. Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas, wrote in an op-ed in Texas Lawyer:

“Rest assured that we will be careful not to discourage legitimate businesses from accessing the important financial resources that Congress made available through the CARES Act. We will not punish companies that accessed stimulus funds in good faith compliance with the rules. Nor, will we seek out applicants who made technical mistakes in processing paperwork or honestly misunderstood regulatory or certification requirements. Our focus is on fraud.”

Let’s hope the entire government is on the same page as Mr. Cox.

This article is not intended as legal advice. It’s intended to offer news and peer perspective on an important issue that affects us as business owners. Stay informed and check with your attorney and/or accountant with questions.

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BlueVine and DoorDash Partner on PPP Loan Application Tool for Restaurant Owners

BlueVine and DoorDash Partner on PPP Loan Application Tool for Restaurant Owners

FinTech company BlueVine has partnered with DoorDash to provide a custom PPP loan application for small businesses.

The opportunity is designed for restaurants that partner with DoorDash for delivery services. And it’s meant to help those companies save time on the application process.

Independent restaurants have been hit extremely hard by the pandemic. So any opportunity for extra funds may help more stay afloat. However, not all feel equipped to apply for and receive loans from the government’s Paycheck Protection Program. The federal government recently extended the program through August 8. So BlueVine will continue to accept and process applications through this period. As a SBA approved lender, they’ve created a custom application process that’s designed to be easy for small businesses.

BlueVine, DoorDash PPP Loan Tool for Restaurant Owners

Brad Brodigan, Chief Commercial Officer at BlueVine said in an email to Small Business Trends, “Our partnership with DoorDash has provided millions in fast funding to restaurants who may have been waiting to hear from their traditional bank. We’ve heard from business owners that the program can be intimidating and confusing, deterring many of them from applying for a loan. In some cases, business owners were frightened by the lack of information on forgiveness. By receiving information from a trusted source like DoorDash and a simplified application process and hands-on support from BlueVine, our hope is that many restaurants received PPP loans that wouldn’t have otherwise – especially those who may not have had a relationship with their bank.”

To apply, merchants can simply fill out the online application on BlueVine’s website by August 8. The company offers a simple application, fast processing, and day-of funding capabilities. You’ll need some basic business information, bank account, and tax documents. Businesses just need to have fewer than 500 employees and show hardships due to COVID-19 to qualify for PPP loans.

Loans can be for up to $2 million at 1 percent interest. And they can be used to cover payroll, rent utilities, and other approved operating expenses. There are no payments for the first six months. And those who meet certain employee retention qualifications may have their loans forgiven.

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BlueVine and DoorDash Partnership History

The two companies originally formed this partnership in April. Since then, nearly 200 DoorDash partners have received more than $6 million in collective PPP funding. The companies estimate this can impact more than 1,200 workers. And the majority of those recipients are independently owned restaurants with fewer than ten employees.

Overall, the idea is to create a quick and easy way for small restaurants to get the help they need. Small restaurants have been hit extremely hard by the pandemic. And many are currently scrambling to reopen or pivot their offerings to carryout or delivery methods. So spending tons of extra time on complicated loan applications may not be in the cards. This program is designed to make PPP funding more accessible to those small business owners. So it could ultimately help more independent restaurants stay afloat.

Brodigan says, “Our partnership with DoorDash has allowed independent restaurant owners to save time by being able to apply for a loan within minutes. BlueVine’s technology is simple, easy to use and has provided many applicants with day-of funding. Our partnership has provided a lifeline to hundreds of independent restaurant owners quickly with our team of trusted advisors helping merchants every step of the way.”



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The Impact of COVID 19 on Business Travel %%sep%% %%sitename%%

The Impact of COVID 19 on Business Travel %%sep%% %%sitename%%

Business travel has always required a certain degree of planning and intentionality. But in today’s post-COVID-19 world, the need for strategic forethought is more important than ever before. How you prepare will dictate whether or not it’s a safe, healthy, and productive trip.

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Travel Industry and Business Travel

Few industries have been hit as hard by the COVID-19 pandemic as the travel industry. This includes airlines, hotels, resorts, cruise lines, rental car companies, conference centers, and popular tourist attractions.

Just how hard has the travel industry been hit? Consider the latest data points and statistics from the U.S. Travel Association:

  • Total travel spending in the United States is projected to drop 45 percent by the end of the year. (Domestic travel spending will fall by 40 percent, while international inbound spending will shed 75 percent of spending.)
  • Whereas the U.S. economy is in a recession, the travel industry is officially in a depression. Overall unemployment is hovering around 51 percent – twice the unemployment rate of the worst year of the Great Depression!
  • Since the beginning of March, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused more than $250 billion in cumulative losses for the U.S. travel economy.
  • While road travel levels are nearly back to pre-pandemic levels, it was down 73 percent in the first week of April.
  • For much of April, daily TSA screens at U.S. airports were well below 100,000 – a decline of 96 percent from pre-pandemic levels.

These are just a few of the most striking data points. They show just how seriously the travel industry has been impacted and how much ground must be made up in order to get back to normal.

Certain types of travel will take a while to return to full strength. International leisure travel, for example, will be slow to bounce back. Business travel, on the other hand, is viewed as being much more important. So for companies and their employees, the question becomes: What does the future of business travel look like?

The New Normal for Business Travel

Whether it’s for business or pleasure, business travel will never look the same. The only thing we can equate this situation to is 9/11 when the entire air travel industry changed in a matter of days. Prior to the terrorist attacks, security was lax, kids could visit the cockpit during a flight, and there were no major concerns over air travel. But within hours, the entire TSA process changed, cockpits were locked down, and multiple systems were put into place to identify possible threats.

The travel industry is about to undergo significant changes again. Only this time around, the changes are intended to stop an invisible, deadly virus, rather than terrorists. A new normal is on the horizon and here are some developments and trends we can expect to see in the world of business travel:

1. Business Travel Will Become More Intentional

By some estimates, there will be a 5 to 10 percent permanent loss of business travel. (This means roughly 50 cents to $1 out of every $100 spent on business travel is gone forever – never to return.)

There will be a further dip related to failures. Numerous airlines, hotels, and travel companies won’t survive the economic effects of the pandemic and this will result in less inventory and opportunities for business travelers to utilize the resources they accessed prior to COVID-19.

Most importantly, each individual business will revisit its current approach to travel and make intentional decisions regarding what types of business travel are worth resuming.

“Sales and certain other kinds of business trips likely will remain essential and continue to be big revenue drivers for travel companies,” Dan Reed writes for Forbes. “But lots of businesses are learning right now that they really can get more done, and do so at much lower cost, via teleconferencing than they previously believed.”

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In other words, all of those fluffy business trips where people travel just because “it’s the way it’s always been done” will need rethinking and retooling. Some businesses will choose to resume to normal, while others will leverage their newfound affinity for Zoom to cancel the bulk of their travel.

2. Domestic Travel Will Outpace International Travel

As current data already shows, domestic business travel is going to outpace international travel. We’ll see an uptick in ground travel first, followed by regional air travel, followed by cross-country air travel, and then by international travel.

Whether grounded in factual data or not, there’s a perception that it’s safer to travel within the United States than it is to travel abroad – even if COVID-19 numbers are higher in the U.S. Plus, there’s always the possibility that other nations shut down American flights into their borders.

3. Foreign Travel Restrictions May Linger

Presently, the CDC makes it clear that, with few exceptions, foreign nationals may not enter into the United States if they’ve visited China, Iran, the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, Brazil, or the European Schengen area within the past 14 days. And it’s likely that travel restrictions will continue to linger for a few more months (at the least).

As restrictions are lifted, expect an increased focus on documentation. ESTA for business purposes will become more important than ever, as will medical records. (Proof of antibody testing and/or vaccination – if one becomes available – are all possibilities.)

4. Companies Will Enact Strict Policies

In large businesses that have hundreds or thousands of employees traveling the globe, expect stricter company policies that dictate the precise expectations and processes for employees. Videos, handbooks, and training on things like hygiene, packing, and human-to-human interaction will all be revisited.

How Will Changes Impact Your Travel?

Every situation is unique. It’s futile to cast a wide blanket across the business world or travel industry and say, “This is how it’s going to be.” So much about this pandemic is fluid. Circumstances and predictions seem to change on a daily basis, which leaves many businesses in challenging situations where they have to blindly balance risk and reward.

As the virus (hopefully) continues retreating and we get closer to a vaccine or cure, the expectation is that we’ll slowly resume to some sense of normalcy. But as suggested by the latest trends, “normal” is likely to take on a new definition for business travelers and the surrounding industries.



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Checklist for reopening corona virus for small business owners

Checklist for reopening corona virus for small business owners

With some states lifting business restrictions, small businesses in various industries are preparing to reopen their doors. <! – ->

However, it does not work as usual.

Checklist for the reopening of the corona virus

In order to create a safe and productive work environment, employers may need to take several additional steps before they can be used again.

<! – -> Vicki Salemi, career expert at gave small business trends some tips on important steps that companies should take when preparing them. That is why we have created this handy checklist for corona virus reopening that any small business owner can use.

Prepare a timeline

Most states remove restrictions in phases based on specific regions and types of business. Although details can change, it is important for companies to set goals and dates for reopening certain parts of their business so they can stay on the right track. In this way, you can also give employees and customers an idea of ​​when you will reopen.

Create a communication plan

Many small business employees are waiting for information about their return to work from managers or superiors. If you don't already have one, create a specific chain of commands or open communication channels to send messages to your entire team. When creating a schedule and plan, let employees know exactly what changes can be made when they return to work. Your plan should include things like office logistics, meeting guidelines, and the use of lifts and break rooms, as you'll likely still need some social distance guidelines. Some companies may also fluctuate if employees return or continue to offer teleworking options for high-risk team members or for those who feel unsafe to come back to the office immediately.

Invest in protective equipment

Physical security is a top priority at many workplaces across the country. So if you don't have a stock yet, you may need to invest in a stock of personal protective equipment such as face masks and gloves to distribute to employees. In fact, some states have asked employers to provide their teams with masks or other equipment when they require them to come to work. If you order these items in advance, you can ensure security as soon as they have to be opened again.

Setting up disinfection stations

Regular hand washing and disinfection is also of the utmost importance to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Companies that want to ensure a clean environment and help employees feel safe and comfortable can set up additional disinfection stations or hand washing areas in their office or facility. <! – ->

Development of a cleaning policy

If there are some common areas in your workplace, regular disinfection may be necessary or beneficial to stop germs from spreading. And your regular professional cleaning schedule may not be enough. Therefore, you may want to create a schedule or guidelines for disinfecting certain items. For example, you can leave the disinfectant cleaner near the phone in the conference room and ask each employee to clean it after use. Or create a rotating schedule for team members to disinfect door handles and elevator buttons daily.

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Emotionally support employees

This time it was not only difficult for people's physical health. Many employees are likely to have emotional problems as well. And some of this can show up as you prepare to go back to work or prepare for another important change in your schedule. As an employer, you can support your team by letting them know clearly how they can discuss problems with you or other members of your team. For example, you can set up a meeting where people can openly discuss problems or open virtual office hours with themselves or certain managers. Just letting people know that it is normal to feel a little uncomfortable during this time can help reduce their fear of returning to work.

Strengthen your online presence

<! – -> Even if some companies reopen, personal interactions will no longer be what they used to be. Companies that have relied on this type of communication for sales and marketing must therefore further adapt their strategies. Even before you return to the office all day, small business owners should focus on creating a more robust online presence so customers can easily do business with you, even if they distance themselves socially. During this time, it may be worth focusing more on your social media customer service or adding a live chat feature to your website.

Set limits

Working from home has resulted in many employees observing strange working hours and combining their office and private lives. When teams move back to an office environment, some employees may maintain some of these habits, such as: For example, answering emails in the middle of the night or planning conference calls for dinner. To maintain reason and create a healthier business environment, companies may want to set working time guidelines or at least deter unhealthy habits.

Start a virtual mentoring program

When employees return to work in stages and only interact with each other behind masks or physical barriers, it is normal for people to feel separated from their colleagues. This can ultimately lead to burnout or make people feel separated from their work. If you want to securely encourage more interaction, you can create a virtual mentoring program or set up collaboration opportunities so people can collaborate online or by phone. This can also be beneficial for teams that will continue to work remotely for the foreseeable future.

Maintaining flexibility

Even if you have a solid plan for your team to return to work, things can change immediately. Don't get too involved in a particular schedule or idea if health or policy changes affect your business. Creating some contingency plans and keeping communication channels open in your company can help you stay agile during this crisis and quickly adapt to unexpected challenges.



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57% of small businesses are optimistic despite COVID-19

57% of small businesses are optimistic despite COVID-19

The majority of small businesses (57%) say that despite the COVID 19 crisis, they are optimistic or extremely optimistic about their company's future. This emerges from a survey published today. The State of Small Business Report published by Facebook and the Small Business Roundtable surveyed 86,000 small business owners. The report focused on the COVID-19 situation. <! – ->

This positive outlook is remarkable when you consider that almost a third of small businesses said they were not operational from April 2020. They were closed due to the crisis.

Although there is no shortage of small businesses harmed by COVID-19, the impact of the industry varies. One thing is clear: small businesses need a quick opening of the economy before more sustainable damage is done.

31% shutdown: industries injured by COVID-19

<! – -> Thirty-one percent (31%) of small businesses had ceased operations during the April 2020 crisis. The reason? Around 62% of those questioned said the main reason was government contracts. Only 9% cited financial challenges and 7% cited lack of customer demand as a reason.

In terms of geography, businesses in the northeast were more likely to close. Those in the southeast were less likely.

However, when it comes to types of businesses and industries, the small businesses most affected by COVID-19 include:

  • Private enterprise, including self-employed: 52% closed.
  • Hospitality and restaurants: 43% closed.
  • Service companies such as fitness, salons and professional services: 41% closed.

Those who remain rather open are in agriculture as well as in information and communication. See the table above.

Small businesses adjust where possible

Small companies have an advantage due to their flexibility and maneuverability. And this advantage helped the owners to turn and adjust. <! – ->

The Internet was a lifeline. About 79% have changed and adjusted in some way to deal with it.

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  • Many have employees who work at home and use technical tools to work.
  • 36% make all sales online. They use tools for e-commerce, digital payments, digital advertising and service delivery.
  • But not all small businesses can get by with online work. About half of the companies (51%) indicated that a large part of the interactions still have to be carried out in one physical place.

Those who are still open face a thin quarter

It will be a lean summer for small business operations. One study participant said: “Despite the 50% drop in sales, we still have to pay 100% of our fixed costs. That's impossible. The rent was already high. Now it makes up 50% of our gross income. "

<! – -> Of the small businesses that are still open, 76% of owners are concerned about cash flow. About 41% of owners say they want to use personal savings to keep the business going. Another 39% do not know where they will get the money from.

Approximately 11% of small businesses that are still operating assume that if the conditions continue, they will fail in the next three months.

Obviously, small businesses injured by COVID-19 need the economy to open up.

As one business owner said: “My business needs to open up the economy. Small businesses suffer and no amount of economic stimulus can replace a thriving and functioning company. “

Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, and John Stanford and Rhett Buttle, the co-executive directors of the Small Business Roundtable, summarized the study. The "… people who work, manage and work for SMEs are resilient; Among them there is hope and optimism for the future of their business. They are finding new ways to reach their customers online, they are making adjustments to how and when they do business, and they are working hard to fulfill their family responsibilities at the same time, ”they said. See the study .


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How to Encourage Employees to Go Back to Work %% sep %%%% Site-Name %%

How to Encourage Employees to Go Back to Work %% sep %%%% Site-Name %%

Are you concerned that your employees may not be able to return to work after the pandemic? <! – ->

Some may fear for their safety. Others could temporarily receive higher unemployment benefits. In any case, getting some people back to work can be more difficult than you originally thought.

Small Business Trends contacted Arran Stewart, CVO and co-founder of who gave some helpful tips to encourage your employees to return.

<! – -> It provided five ways that small business owners can encourage their employees to get back to work.


Encourage employees to return to work after pandemic

He started by highlighting some of the remaining obstacles.

"Fear will be the biggest hurdle for business owners," Stewart writes. “We need a suitable vaccine or medical treatment. Until then, there is constant concern that you will get sick in a public place. "

Stewart says another problem is that some states are paying people more unemployment than when they were working. People may also not want to return to a job that could expose them to the virus.

Here are some things SMEs can do to solve these problems. <! – ->

Show them that you are interested

Stewart explains: Owners and managers must lead with empathy and compassion. This is a stressful time for everyone when people feel insecure about their health, safety and future. These principles should determine how you lead your employees through this and beyond. “

Here are some things smart business owners can do.

<! – -> It helps to keep up to date with wellness websites and other resources . Post information about them in the office or on your website and other shared areas. Ensuring that your employees have the latest information from credible sources shows that you are taking care of it.

If they know that you are compassionate, they are more likely to want to return to work.

Good communication is a great way to lure your employees back. This is one of the best ways to show them that you are compassionate. Make sure that all channels you use are bidirectional. Knowing that they can meet their needs and concerns will make them feel more comfortable

Building an internal channel via Slack or Skype helps.

Show them that you will protect them

Stewart says small business owners need to redevelop the workplace.

"They want to keep the high-touch services clean and give employees access to personal protective equipment such as gloves, masks and hand disinfectants," says Stewart.

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Adopting a routine where everyone wipes equipment and desks encourages a sense of togetherness. This is particularly important for places with layers.

It's one thing to find this equipment to protect your company and your people. You need to do a little more to make this aspect appealing. You should train your employees in how to wear gloves and masks and how to use the disinfectant effectively.

Here are some CDC tips on .

The provision of printed matter and signs is also good. If you set this up in your small business you will see that you care about your employees and their safety.

Change Your Health Insurance

Stewart explains some other possible changes that employees will withdraw.

"Office capacity may need to be scaled down or staggered to achieve a policy of social distancing," he says. "In addition, the sick leave guidelines can be adjusted to broaden the definition of qualifications," he says.

Include remote work

Another way to adapt your business to the times is to encourage teleworking. He says that if employees have been able to stay productive, they should be allowed to work from home. Properly presented, this is a great incentive to get people back to work

"Some of the changes brought about by the pandemic were more positive and progressive for some industries," he says. "Use some of the changes as an opportunity to improve and expand your business."

If you make sure that your people have the right technology, you can work from home. The right communication system is important. Cloud-based VOIP phone systems are vital. Office workers will feel comfortable with backups for video conferencing systems like Zoom.

Funding a schedule helps to get workers back into this kind of situation. It's a good idea to offer a routine. It helps workers return to a familiar rhythm even when they are not in the office.

Start planning now

"Despite the circumstances, this is an ideal time for small businesses to use their ability to change quickly and start over with new work practices," says Stewart.

If you want to get started, check out some of these office designs inspired by COVID 19. The new six-foot office combines social distance and jobs. The company concerned also offers paper place mats for desks. These are thrown away at the end of the day.

Stewart delivers the last word.

"Now is the time to think carefully about the future of your business and how agile you can be to survive and thrive out of the pandemic."



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How to Trust Your Remote Employees (INFOGRAPHIC)

How to Trust Your Remote Employees (INFOGRAPHIC)

Working from home has become the new normal for many workers. Some workers thrive in remote working conditions and prefer to work from home in the future. For companies and managers who have no experience with homework, this new territory brings with it obstacles and challenges. <! – ->

One such obstacle is trust.

Trusting Remote Workers

Online Psychology Degrees have compiled an infographic to shed light on the subject of trust in this new climate of remote work. The infographic Trusting Remote Workers: The New Normal shows current work trends. Research examines workers' thoughts about working from home.

<! – -> Research shows that 91% of workers say they experience a better work-life balance when they work from home. 76% said their productivity and focus had increased, and 78% said homework reduced stress.

Employers also see the benefits of doing homework, but many have concerns about trust. Online Psychology Degrees' infographic describes the psychology behind why it is so important to trust remote employees.

The value of trust

With employees in organizations who feel trustworthy with their homework, 106% more energy feels at work. Confidence in employees means that 76% of employees feel more engaged in tasks. Trust is also synonymous with a lower stress level. The study found that 74% of employees say they feel valued when working remotely, which lowers stress levels. 40% of workers say they suffer less from burnout when they feel valued in their organization. 29% say that overall they feel more satisfied with life when they feel valued at work at home.

How can employers show trust in remote workers?

The infographic shows ways in which employers can trust the homework staff. One of them was to promote self-regulation. The infographic cites a 2014 study that found that almost half of employees would forego a 20% increase to gain more control over how they work.

76% of workers said their best work days were when they made progress on their goals. As a result, it is another strategy that employers and managers can adjust to help workers feel trustworthy in remote conditions. <! – ->

Be transparent

The infographic also cites a study that found that engagement in the workplace is significantly improved through the daily communication of executives. In order to help employees feel trustworthy and valued when working remotely, it is important for employers to exercise transparency.

The future of work

Of course, homework setups are nothing new. As Small Biz Trends noted in an article from 2018 there are many reasons why teams prefer to work from home.

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<! – -> Since COVID-19 forces employers to offer homework, the pandemic has shown how effective remote working can be. As a result, many employees thrive in the current work environment. 78% say they feel healthier from home.

Since more workers prefer to work from home, employers should rethink working conditions according to COVID-19. However, as the infographic shows, distant conditions must be right, including providing trust and transparency to workers.

The key message of the infographic from Online Psychology Degrees is, as the investigation shows:

"With a focus on trust, any distant team can survive and thrive."

Trust Remote Workers: The New Normal Infographic

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Vijay Sundaram of Zoho discusses PPP funding %% sep %%%% site name %%

Vijay Sundaram of Zoho discusses PPP funding %% sep %%%% site name %%

In this week's Small Business Radio Show I spoke to Vijay Sundaram, chief strategy officer at Zoho about the next round of PPP funding for small businesses. We also discussed how the program can better serve small businesses and what else the federal government could do to help. <! – ->

Congress approved a further $ 310 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). And there is another $ 60 billion for the Economic Injury Protection Plan (EIDL).

The new funding has reserved $ 60 billion for loans to small and medium-sized financial institutions.

<! – -> But this introduction of urgently needed money by banks did not go smoothly and as a result many small companies could no longer get help during this time listed companies received 500 in the first round Million dollars.

It has been reported that many companies that were not severely affected by the coronavirus pandemic could get a forgivable loan because it was not based on need, revenue, or income. but how many employees a company had at a particular location.

It is predicted that in the first two rounds less than 15% of small businesses in the United States will likely receive a loan.

Vijay Sundaram from Zoho talks about PPP funding for small businesses

Small businesses that have received a PPP loan must now use 75% of their wages and salaries for the next eight weeks or June 30, 2020 (whichever comes first). Unfortunately, this results in corporate unemployment agencies effectively passing money on to employees, even if small businesses are unwilling to hire them again.

In addition to global growth and marketing, he is responsible for the partner and channel program. Vjay is a former entrepreneur and company founder in the areas of cloud supply chain software, mobile advertising technology and renewable energies. <! – ->

He emphasized that if we want to help the economy, we have to do a lot of help to the 30 million small businesses in the United States that make up a large percentage of GDP and account for 47% of the country's employment.

He praised the federal government for the speed with which they passed the program, but believes banks are not an optimal channel because they have obstacles to lending and reducing their risk.

<! – -> Vjay comments that they probably "distributed in 14 days what they normally distribute in 14 years!"

He advises the government to find a better channel for distributing the money, since the banks naturally focused on larger customers with whom they had a relationship.

In addition, many small businesses were not even aware of all the programs that could support them.

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He believes that the SBA must help small businesses with all three problems:

  • How to keep employees,
  • How to Maintain Cash Flow
  • How to prevent bankruptcy

In this case, Vjay explains, “Corporations can then focus on what they need to do operationally to keep their business going and spend time redefining their business rather than keeping their creditors at bay . "

There are political barriers to making money available directly to workers like in other countries (75% of their salary is paid directly to them) because there are few mechanisms besides unemployment.

But Vjay insists that these are extraordinary times and parts of the US government are doing revolutionary things.

For example, the Federal Reserve buys corporate bonds and stops mortgage bonds. These are exceptions created by the law to allow them to enter markets where they were previously prohibited.

Vjay says we have to use innovative thinking, like in Sweden, where corporate taxes have been reimbursed. He suggests taking steps in the United States such as suspending wage taxes, rents and mortgage commitments, or getting more money directly for employees, as was done in the FFCRA Act for extended sick leave


Vijay admits there will be fraud, but broad brushstrokes to solve the problem are urgently needed.

Listen to the entire episode of the Small Business Radio Show .



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