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5,600 Manitoba small business owners now contemplating pulling the plug, putting over 100,000 jobs at risk

#SmallBusinessEveryDay dashboard shows only 45 per cent of small firms remain fully open in the province

Manitoba, January 21, 2021 – Fifteen per cent (5,601) of Manitoba small business owners are seriously contemplating permanently closing their business, putting an estimated 102,598 jobs at risk across the province, estimates the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) in an update to its earlier estimate on business closures this past summer. Nationally, one-in-six (181,000) small business owners are seriously contemplating permanently closing, putting more than 2.4 million jobs at risk (20 per cent of private sector jobs). This latest estimate is on top of the 58,000 businesses that became inactive in 2020. 

“Although there is still time for business owners to reverse course if conditions improve, it is alarming to see an increasing number considering permanent closure, compared to our first estimate last summer. We are not headed in the right direction and each week that passes without improvement on the business front pushes more owners to make that final decision. The more businesses that disappear, the more jobs we will lose and the harder it will be for the economy to recover,” said Simon Gaudreault, Senior Director of National Research at CFIB. 

Nationally, the number of threatened businesses could be as low as 71,000 or as high as 222,000 (between 7 and 21 per cent of all businesses) depending on how the coming months unfold, jeopardizing between 962,000 and 2,951,000 jobs. In Manitoba, this range is between 2,122 to 6,645 businesses (between 6 and 18 per cent of all businesses) and between 39,455 and 121,755 jobs. 

Businesses in the hospitality (restaurants, hotels, caterers) and arts and recreation (gyms, venues, arcades) sectors are most at risk, with roughly one in three businesses in both sectors actively considering closure. Including businesses that have already become inactive in 2020, Canada could lose a total of between one in eight (12 per cent) and one in four (26 per cent) businesses during this pandemic. 
 

Nationally:   Business Closures
2020 Inactive Canadian firms from Statistics Canada   58,000
Pending Closure Estimate Low 71,000
  CFIB Forecast 181,000 (1 in 6)
  High 222,000
Total Small Business Closures due to COVID Low 1 in 8 closed
  CFIB Forecast 1 in 5 closed
  High 1 in 4 closed

#SmallBusinessEveryDay dashboard update 
The latest national data on CFIB’s Small Business Recovery Dashboard underscore how precarious the situation for small businesses has become:

  • 47 per cent of businesses are fully open (down from 62 per cent at the end of November)
  • 36 per cent are fully staffed (down from 41 per cent at the end of November)
  • 22 per cent are making normal sales (down from 29 per cent at the end of November)

In Manitoba, the Small Business Recovery Dashboard now shows:

  • 45 per cent of businesses are fully open (down slightly from 48 per cent at the end of November)
  • 39 per cent are fully staffed (up slightly from 35 per cent at the end of November)
  • 29 per cent are making normal sales (up slightly from 24 per cent at the end of November)

“2021 isn’t off to a great start for Manitoba’s small business. After the tough financial and emotional slog to get through a historically difficult year, the beginning of 2021 feels more like the fifth quarter of 2020 than a new year,” said Jonathan Alward, CFIB’s director, prairie region. “While retailers and a few other types of business owners are hoping for a limited re-opening on Saturday, many other businesses cannot and have no idea when they might be able to re-open. Another tranche of the Manitoba Bridge Grant must be immediately available to those businesses that remain closed.” 

Read CFIB’s full research snapshot for more details. 

For media enquiries or interviews with Simon Gaudreault, Senior Director of National Research on the national results, please contact Milena Stanoeva, Manager of Public Affairs, at 647-464-2814 or email public.affairs@cfib.ca.

To arrange an interview with Jonathan Alward, CFIB's director, prairie region on the provincial results, please call (431) 998-4498, or e-mail msman@cfib.ca. You can also follow CFIB Manitoba on Twitter at @cfibMB.

About CFIB
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada’s largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 110,000 members across every industry and region. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners’ chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. 

About #SmallBusinessEveryDay
The #SmallBusinessEveryDay campaign encourages local shopping, promotes initiatives to support small business and provides posters and other tools for businesses to use. It is supported by Scotiabank, Chase Merchant Services, eBay Canada, Intuit Canada and Interac Corp. To find out more about being a media sponsor please contact marketing@cfib.ca.
 

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