Guide for SMEs: how to pivot your business model

first_imgGuide to SMEs_Article image_long[3],This is part of our free series, Guide for SMEs, which aims to provide practical, actionable advice for small food and drink brands impacted by the coronavirus crisisWhen lockdown hit, many bricks and mortar food and drink businesses had to overcome the roadblock that had landed on their route to market by pivoting their business model.To find out how it’s done, and what needs to be considered when you make the switch, we spoke to Stefano Cuomo, MD of Faversham food hall Macknade, which introduced its first delivery service while in lockdown to keep the tills ringing. Are there any considerations small businesses should take into account before they decide to pivot?For the hospitality sector, particularly food and beverage retailers, the main consideration is whether to offer delivery or takeaway options. In the short term, delivery and takeaway services can work well as they can be scaled up or down, and the approach allows businesses to maintain a positive rapport with their customers.However, the overheads for retail and delivery are very different, which should be an important concern influencing the decision to pivot into delivery. For small and medium-sized retailers, whilst it’s important to be dynamic, innovation needs to be carried out in a way that doesn’t result in extra overheads or your business won’t benefit. The best strategic approach is to review measures regularly to ensure that they can be fulfilled.Another huge consideration is the health and safety of both employees and customers. Understanding the current health and safety guidelines is crucial; we work with a support organisation for SMEs, Locate in Kent, to help unpick the requirements, and I believe in other parts of the UK, there are similar support services.What work must be done ahead of changing your business plan?Considering your margins is a major part of creating a strategic plan. Thanks to the government furlough scheme, we have been given some headspace to revisit our business model with the burden of extra overheads taken away.From March to July, we have been able to relook at our model and start to pivot. These changes in our approach aren’t just to help us to remain profitable now, but allow us some wiggle room to examine our business model in depth to make sure it’s still going to be relevant in two years’ time.Naturally, this is challenging in the current climate as there are still a lot of unknowns, but having a central strategy to guide you, that is flexible enough to be adapted as we progress through the crisis, will be key for SMEs to ensure the success of their business.How will pivoting impact taxation?It comes back to margin. Businesses have been able to defer a lot of their overheads thanks to government measures, but there is going to be some unpicking to be done in the coming months as businesses start to look at bringing those costs back in, and what the impact is going to be.Additionally, from a cashflow perspective, businesses need to ensure their deferred payments are being planned for. ‘Having a central strategy to guide you, that is flexible enough to be adapted as we progress through the crisis, will be key for SMEs,’ says Cuomo What kind of support is available for SMEs who are considering diversification?I’d encourage SMEs to look at the organisations that work with their local council as a starting point, as well as identifying the main areas of support you would benefit from.In Kent, where Macknade is based, we have organisations like Locate in Kent, Visit Kent and Produced in Kent that provide fantastic resources for SMEs. These agencies are partners of the local council and offer business support services. There is also funding available from Kent County Council, in the form of 0% loans, to support businesses already in Kent or those looking to relocate there. Finding and meeting other businesses that are similar to yours is helpful too. We find that connecting with other SMEs and sharing information to support each other can make a lot of difference. When should an SME communicate the switch to customers?The approach should be the same as any other trading period: keep having continual dialogue with your customers with clear messages about what you’re doing. It’s important to explain the approach you’re taking and reassure customers that your product and its quality remains the same.Now more than ever, communication is key to maintain your customer relationships, and adopting a transparent and inclusive manner with your customer communications – keeping them updated on the progress of your plans and how your business is faring – will help to keep them engaged with your business.Do staff contracts need to be changed?At the moment, the formal employee contract will remain the same, in terms of being an overview of responsibilities and expectations of the team member. Although, as the situation in the UK changes, it is likely that contracts are going to need to adapt in line with the ‘new normal’.As we start to move forward towards a more flexible way of working, this is going to have to be contracted in. Are there any popular switches for businesses operating in certain markets?The obvious one for food and drink businesses has been delivery. This shift, however, can only come with an understanding of who your core customers are, as no business can service everyone.At Macknade, our customer age demographic is 60-plus. When we look at this core customer, the chances are they were isolating earlier than other age groups and are likely to continue to prioritise home delivery options.Delivery therefore makes strategic sense in the context of our customer base. I think that is the main point to consider – understand who you are targeting and how your business can pivot to suit your customer base.last_img read more

Recognizing Veterans Day in Pennsylvania (VIDEO)

first_img  SHARE  TWEET By: Governor Tom Wolf The Blog,  Videos November 11, 2016 Today we come together to recognize all our distinguished veterans whose service has allowed our nation to prosper and has allowed us all to live in freedom.Our veterans disregard personal well-being and act with incredible honor to preserve for us, the citizens of this great nation, a gift of unapproachable magnitude: our freedom.We owe an inexpressible debt to our distinguished veterans, and today in special recognition of their courageous efforts, I would like to honor these brave men and women and encourage all citizens to celebrate and thank these American heroes of the past and present.On behalf of all Pennsylvanians, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to all veterans for their selfless service to this country. Thank you.center_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Recognizing Veterans Day in Pennsylvania (VIDEO)last_img read more

Solar energy for Africa by 2030

first_imgFOCAC: Clean energy projects in Africa Obama Africa Investment The British Government has launched a new campaign to help achieve universal energy access across Africa by 2030. Part of the initiative involves removing some of the barriers to installing small, self-contained solar energy kits into homes and businesses, which are operated on a pay-as-you-go system. INTERVIEW: AfDB Africa energy initiativelast_img

Canyon snaps up chance

first_img But it was a bittersweet result for the champion trainer as the much-anticipated debut of Allez Colombieres ended prematurely when he was pulled up early on by Ruby Walsh with what subsequently turned out to be a fatal pelvic injury. With the evens favourite out of the contest, former John Gosden-trained dual Listed winner Nichols Canyon (7-2) took full advantage, clearing away going to the final flight and winning by five lengths despite a clumsy leap. Willie Mullins added another Grade One prize to his collection when Nichols Canyon won the Bar One Racing Royal Bond Novice Hurdle at Fairyhouse in impressive style. Paul Townend rode the winner, who was following on from his jumps debut victory at Cork and was quoted at 12-1 for the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle by BetVictor, while Boylesports go 14-1 and Paddy Power 16-1. Townend said: “He did it nicely. No one likes to see a horse like Allez Colombieres pulling up, but he was a deserved winner. “He was a good Flat horse and stays well. On the whole he jumped better than he did in Cork. He’s learning and I think he has an engine as well.” Mullins said: “His jumping has improved as he was untidy the last day. Paul said there was plenty left in the tank if anything came to him. “He’ll go the normal two-mile route and will probably run next at Leopardstown after Christmas.” The trainer initially spoke of his hopes that the injury to Allez Colombieres might not be too serious, but that proved not to be the case. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says he did not lie over Danny Welbeck injury

first_img Press Association Arsene Wenger has urged Arsenal fans to focus on getting behind the current players and not why the club failed to sign a replacement for injured forward Danny Welbeck before the transfer window shut. “I have made more than 300 transfers and every time it’s a decision to make. Do you buy the player because he strengthens his squad or not? The solutions we had were not convincing at all.” The Arsenal manager insisted there was nothing untoward surrounding Welbeck’s surgery and the timing of the announcement coming after the closure of the window. “I am surprised that people accused me of lying when I was in the press conference on Friday morning, I did not know Welbeck had a bad setback. I did not lie to you, I gave you the information I had,” he said. “I heard late on Friday night that his condition had not evolved as well as we thought it was and he had needed specialist and needed further investigation. Apart from that, if we did not find someone [to sign], we did not find them.” Midfielder Jack Wilshere will not return as expected from a hairline fracture in his fibula following the international break as planned after what Wenger described as a “little setback”, but German defender Per Mertesacker could be in contention again following illness. Arsenal, meanwhile, are to donate £1 for every ticket sold against Stoke to help the Syrian refugee crisis. England forward Welbeck is expected to be out until at least Christmas after he underwent surgery on a knee problem which caused him to miss the end of last season and the FA Cup final victory over Aston Villa. With the decision to operate having come ahead of the September 1 deadline, there would have still been time for Arsenal to move in the transfer window to bolster the attacking options. Both Karim Benzema at Real Madrid and Uruguayan forward Edinson Cavani from Paris St Germain were reported targets. Former Arsenal midfielder Paul Merson said to have only added veteran goalkeeper Petr Cech, who arrived earlier in the summer from Chelsea, “cheats the fans”. Wenger hit back when s peaking ahead of Saturday’s Barclays Premier League match against Stoke, insisting he had not lied about the situation when addressing the issue at the time. The Gunners boss remains confident there is enough attacking talent within the squad to cope. “To support the club and support them team is to stand behind the players – it is not always expecting someone coming down from heaven to sort out all your problems. Support is believing in the players in the squad and this is a good opportunity to do that for our supporters,” he said. Wenger continued: “I am confident I have enough cover and enough quality. “We have Alexis (Sanchez), we have (Olivier) Giroud, we have (Theo) Walcott and it is always a similar problem – when you have many strikers people say how do you keep them all happy? It is about the efficiency and quality of our game, we can score goals I am not worried about that.” Wenger rebuffed suggestions he should have just raided the Emirates Stadium bank vault regardless, given Arsenal were the only side in Europe’s top five leagues not to bring in an outfield player this summer. “You have to be convinced that it is not just to please people, that it is an efficient solution, and the efficient solution didn’t turn up. As well you have to be brave enough to say no,” Wenger added. last_img read more

Other Sports Valtteri Bottas pips Lewis Hamilton to pole position in historic Chinese Grand Prix

first_img Shanghai: Valtteri Bottas pipped Lewis Hamilton to pole position for Sunday’s milestone Chinese Grand Prix in a dominant Mercedes front-row lockout. Sebastian Vettel was third-fastest for Mercedes’ arch-rivals Ferrari for the race in Shanghai, the 1,000th grand Prix in Formula One. Bottas, who leads the world championship by a point ahead of title-holder Hamilton after two races, scorched to the best time of one minute 31.547 seconds. That was just 0.023 secs ahead of Hamilton, the Briton who has been wrestling with his Mercedes and has voiced concern about Ferrari’s superior straight-line speed.Mercedes though appear to have the edge on the corners.    “The car has been really good this weekend and Lewis also improved a lot in qualifying, it was super close,” said the flying Finn Bottas, who is beginning to climb out of the shadow of his more famous team-mate.RELATED    Vettel, the four-time world champion who has been in the spotlight after a series of unforced errors stretching back to last season, was 0.301secs off Bottas.    The German this time got the better of his decade-younger Ferrari team-mate Charles Leclerc, who is fourth on the grid and failed to so far to match his performance last time out in Bahrain. Fifth was Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and sixth his team-mate Pierre Gasly.    The young Dutchman Verstappen was infuriated after traffic prevented him from clocking a final, flying lap, and made his anger clear in an expletive-filled message over his radio.    Seventh and eighth were the Renault duo of Daniel Ricciardo — last year’s victor in China — and Nico Hulkenberg.    Bottas though is the man in form, going fastest in the last two practice sessions after Vettel topped the times in first practice.    Bottas had also gone quickest in Q1, but five-time world champion Hamilton was marginally faster in Q2. Hamilton, who snatched victory in Bahrain after Leclerc’s Ferrari failed, said that he had been “struggling with the car so I was just battling the thing”, despite joining Bottas on the front row.    “Valtteri was particularly quick in the first sector so I was experimenting throughout the session,” said the 34-year-old, a five-time winner in Shanghai.Hamilton conceded that “Valtteri’s been stellar all weekend”.    Bottas took a clear victory in the season-opening race in Melbourne and grabbed a bonus point for the fastest lap to take the edge in the early standings.    Albon smash     A notable casualty in Q2 was former world champion Kimi Raikkonen, the Alfa Romeo veteran who is a crowd favourite in China. Earlier, Toro Rosso’s Alexander Albon lost control and smashed at high speed towards the end of final practice, so did not take part in qualifying.    The 23-year-old rookie climbed gingerly out of his wrecked car, but only after a huge scare that drew gasps from the crowd in Shanghai.    The Thai-Briton, who is in his first season in F1, careened into a wall as he entered the straight with less than 10 minutes left of third and final practice.    His car was badly mangled and there was a frantic call from engineers asking if he was okay.    He was later given the all-clear but missed qualifying because his ruined car could not be fixed in time.    Albon said that he had been “a bit too greedy”. “I was obviously pushing, trying to find the limits, but it should have been in qualifying, not FP3 (third practice),” he said. highlights The Chinese Grand Prix will be the 1000th race in Formula One history.Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari was third.Valtteri Bottas won the Australian Grand Prix.center_img For all the Latest Sports News News, Other Sports News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps.last_img read more

USC Football has broken discipline system

first_imgNick Saban has not been afraid to discipline players despite ongoing investigations – Photo courtesy of Library of CongressWhen head coach Clay Helton was hired, there was a sigh of relief from fans who expected him to be the one to clean up the football program. Ever since the Reggie Bush debacle sent USC into a full-blown tailspin it has yet to recover from, there have been innumerable issues including the arrest and suspension of former tight end Bryce Dixon for second-degree robbery and the suspension of former cornerback Josh Shaw who lied about the cause of injuries sustained from leaping from a balcony.Helton is not this type of guy. He is a down-to-earth, blue-collar coach who I expected to instill a strong sense of moral obligation to the University and a dedicated work ethic.Of course, the blame for this year’s incidents does not solely fall on the shoulders of Helton, but the tone is set at the top and Helton has the power to make an impression on the young Men of Troy.Already this year, four football players have been suspended. Cornerback Isaiah Langley did not play in the Alabama game, serving a suspension rendered in July after Langley was arrested for suspicion of trespassing, intoxication and resisting arrest at a fraternity party at UCLA in May. Langley was disciplined later in the month for violating team rules.In Saturday’s game against Alabama, linebacker Jabari Ruffin was ejected immediately after he stomped on Alabama player Minkah Fitzpatrick’s groin. His punishment for this offense — a suspension for the first half of the game against Utah State and a required letter of apology. I would love to read the letter from the guy who has been on circulating videos from SportsCenter of the “Top 10 Cheap Shots of All Time.”More notably, linebacker Osa Masina and defensive end Don Hill have been suspended for both the Alabama game and the Utah State game for their involvement in sexual assault investigations. Both are allowed to practice with the team and attend their classes. Given the sensitivity of this particular accusation, this is the area where discipline enters a gray area. It would be easy to take one side or the other and say that clearly these two players need to be disciplined more harshly, or that they have the right to be treated as normal citizens because they are innocent until proven guilty.I do not think the answer is as clear cut.In all of these situations, the argument could be made that Helton has missed his chance to come in as a new coach and set a strict tone of what is and is not acceptable, but Helton hasn’t done anything that isn’t considered standard protocol across college football.In comparison with Alabama, the top team in the country this year and several years running, there has been an equally disturbing trend of crime among football players, but half-hearted disciplinary measures.Alabama’s All-SEC left tackle Cam Robinson was arrested on drug and weapons charges in May, but the case was dropped by the district attorney citing insufficient evidence. After what head coach Nick Saban described as internal discipline, Robinson played in the season opener against USC last weekend. He was even named one of the 10 impact players for Alabama by their coaching staff. However, even though the charges were dropped eventually, Robinson was suspended indefinitely by the football team, proving that just because the university says the athlete is allowed to attend class does not mean the team is required to keep him around.Alabama indefinitely suspended another player, Alphonse Taylor, after he was arrested and charged with drunk driving in July. In August, Saban allowed Taylor to begin practicing with the team, and he served a one-game suspension last weekend, and is now eligible to compete for a starting spot.While many may argue that these punishments are not severe enough, the main difference I would like to highlight between Alabama’s handling of their disciplinary matters and USC’s is that with Alabama, the players were suspended indefinitely before their charges were fully processed, whereas USC responds with allowing two men accused of rape to practice with the rest of the team.Just because they have not been found guilty does not mean they are people who should be representing the University. Athletes should be held to a higher standard than regular students because they are in a more high-profile situation where outsiders automatically associate the quality of the university based on the football team. It also hurts the situation of other football players and athletes, most of whom are normal, kind and morally responsible people.I admire the bravery of Nick Saban to suspend some of his star players just because of the association between the athlete and the crime. When the facts are settled and the dust has cleared, Saban still has the wherewithal to adjust the punishment as necessary, but removing the athlete from the team for an indefinite amount of time is the better option for the team as a whole.Hailey Tucker is a junior majoring in broadcast and digital journalism. She is also the sports editor of the Daily Trojan. Her column, “Tucker Talks,” runs Thursdays.last_img read more

Syracuse wraps up Mary Nutter Classic with a 4-2 win over Cal Poly

first_imgSyracuse (5-3) ended the Mary Nutter Classic in Palm Springs, California, with a 4-2 win over Cal Poly (4-6). The Orange entered Monday’s game off a 6-0 defeat by UCLA on Sunday night. AnnaMarie Gatti started in the circle for the Orange. She let up a single to start the game which would eventually turn into Cal Poly’s first run. Gatti allowed a second run before the Orange would get a chance to bat. She gave up five hits total and struck out two batters. After allowing two hits in the top of the second inning, Gatti was replaced by Alexa Romero, who would finish the final six innings with nine strikeouts, one walk and no hits allowed. It was Romero’s fourth win this season. Freshman Gabby Teran was the first to cross home plate for SU. She started the bottom of the second with a home run to left field. It was her first collegiate home run. Teran had a perfect batting average in the game, recording hits all three times she batted. She also ended the game with a game-high two RBIs. Toni Martin also scored in the second inning, tying the game, 2-2. In the third inning, Bryce Holmgren scored to give the Orange the lead. A Teran single drove Holmgren home and gave SU the lead. AdvertisementThis is placeholder textIn the sixth inning, Holmgren doubled to drive in the final run of the game. Alicia Hansen had walked and came around to score on the extra-base hit.The Orange will travel to Houston next weekend for the Houston Hilton Plaza Invitational where Syracuse will face UNLV, Houston, Yale and UTSA. Comments Published on February 19, 2018 at 2:14 pm Contact Kaci: Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

No. 10 Syracuse defeated by No. 16 Ohio State, dropping its 4th-straight match

first_imgOn Jan. 30, the Orange achieved their highest ranking in school history at No. 10 in the Oracle/ITA National Team Rankings. Since then, Syracuse (4-4, 0-2 Atlantic Coast) has lost four straight, most recently in a 4-2 loss to No. 16 Ohio State (4-2, 0-0 Big 10) on Sunday night in Seattle. The match was a consolation game for the ITA National Women’s Team Indoor Championship.The Orange started out the match by struggling through doubles once again, marking their fifth straight doubles loss. The pair of Sofya Golubovskaya and Masha Tritou lost 6-2, though Gabriela Knutson and Miranda Ramirez were able to win their set 6-4. That put the doubles match in the hands of Guzal Yusupova and Dina Hegab. SU’s third pairing kept things close, but a 5-5 tie turned into a 7-5 win for Ohio State’s pairing of Danielle Wolf and Mary Beth Hurley.Knutson made quick work out of Isabelle Boulais, winning in straight sets 6-4 and 6-1 to tie the match at 1. From there it was quickly 2-2, as Kolie Allen defeated No. 67 Ramirez in straight sets (6-3, 7-5), but Yusupova won hers 6-2 and 6-3.But Dina Hegab had trouble facing No. 99 Luna Dormet at fifth singles, losing 6-2, 6-2. Shortly after, SU’s Libi Mesh fell to Hurley at sixth singles, 6-2 and 6-4, clinching the victory for Ohio State.Golubovskaya won 6-4 in her first set but then lost 6-2 in her second. Down 4-0 in the third set, she retired, giving Ohio State their fifth point of the match.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSyracuse will look to bounce back next weekend after facing three top-20 teams in its past four games. They will face Colorado (4-3) Friday at 3 p.m. at Drumlins Country Club. Published on February 11, 2019 at 12:07 am Contact Eric: Commentscenter_img Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Busy day of inter-county GAA

first_imgIn Munster a semi-final meeting with Kerry awaits the winners of the clash between Clare and Limerick, with that game taking place at Cusack Park in Ennis.At the same time in the Connacht quarter-finals Leitrim travel to a revamped McGovern Park in Ruislip for a meeting with London.In hurling the last two places in the semi-finals of the Leinster Championship will be decided.First up at O’Moore Park in Portlaoise, Laois play host to an in-form Wexford.Throw-in isat 2pm, and then at 4pm attention turns to O’Connor Park in Tullamore.They play host to the meeting of Dublin and newly crowned league champions Galway.It’s been a disruptive build-up to the summer for Dublin, after they were relegated to Division 1B in the league and were without many players on club duty with All-Ireland champions Cuala.But manager Ger Cunningham says they’re now keen to focus on the positives. It’s another busy Sunday in the All-Ireland Football and Hurling Championship.The football action gets underway at 2pm when Derry and Tyrone meet in the quarter-finals of the Ulster Championship at Celtic Park.Then at 3.30 the focus is on Munster and Connacht football.last_img read more