A large number of businesses which have been affected by the rioting across the United Kingdom will be facing a huge financial burden in the coming months, with many small businesses pushed to the edge of catastrophe. The images of vandalism and violence on a large scale broadcast all over the world could impact on the London 2012 Olympic Games.
As a number of small businesses were closing early for security reasons, and others closing long term as a result of damage, the British Retail Consortium were forecasting “huge costs” to businesses and the possibility that London’s image would be tarnished. The BRC also said that it was far too soon to calculate long term costs for businesses.
As looting took place across London, Birmingham, Nottingham, Manchester, Liverpool and Bristol, shelves were emptied of merchandise including electrical goods, clothing and food. The BRC are looking to the government for strong leadership to ensure this stops now, and doesn’t occur again. The BBC have quoted the director general of BRC, Stephen Robertson as saying:
“There are huge costs being incurred and employment lost because shops are closing down across the capital early. Some shops won’t be opening tomorrow. “
One small business owner from Ealing, West London, described the looters as “feral rats”. Branches of Tesco and Sainsbury’s, among others had sustained substantial damage. A Sony warehouse in Enfield had been hit by fire, which would affect deliveries of DVDs and CDs. The cost to all businesses will be significant, especially those already struggling to survive.
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