Top 5 grants for SMEs
The Corona Virus outbreak has affected millions around the world. And as a known fact, many small and medium-sized businesses are adversely affected by this pandemic. This situation calls for action. The question here is whether these businesses can do anything to mitigate economic risk? Well, for that reason, this article provides a brief discussion on five strategic options that any business can consider to tackle this situation.
1) Business Collaborations
Firstly, for business collaborations, realising benefit is the main objective. Association between firms facilitates value creation by leveraging the resources that each firm brings together, enabling goods and services differentiation. Moreover, the participating firms benefit from improved operational efficiency and effectiveness in serving their customers. A classic example would be of two or more firms coming together with each having complementary resources to make it a whole. To make this simple, for instance, a yoga business can collaborate with a ride-sharing service to deliver its yoga equipment and other yoga products. However, Firms must consider organisational independence while working in pursuit of a common goal. Hence, strategising the right mix of collaboration is crucial to benefit both customers and businesses.
2) Funding from businesses
Management of crisis through funding and grants is another option available to the businesses. Companies like Google have committed $800+ million to support small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), health organisations and governments, and health workers on the frontline of this global pandemic. Moreover, Google Small Business is a platform that helps small businesses to connect with google products, resources and services to reach their goal. Google’s commitments include:
- A $200 million investment fund that will support NGOs and financial institutions around the world to help provide small businesses with access to capital. And $15 million in cash grants Google.org is already providing to non-profits to help bridge these gaps for SMBs.
- $20 million in ad grants to community financial institutions and NGOs specifically to run public service announcements on relief funds and other resources for SMBs. Moreover, $340 million in Google Ads credits available to all SMBs with active accounts over the past year. Credit notifications will appear in their Google Ads accounts and can be used at any point until the end of 2020 across our advertising platforms. With hope that it will help to alleviate some of the cost of staying in touch with their customers.
- Direct financial support and expertise to help increase the production capacity for personal protective equipment (PPE) and lifesaving medical devices.
3) Businesses fostering Careers
SMEs can also tap on the platforms providing career opportunities. For instance, Facebook launched an RPM (Rotational Project Management) program. This program can be useful for SMEs to solve project management issues and gain insights into the challenges faced for a new product launch.
4) Government grants and programs
Countries around the world are taking financial and fiscal measures to combat COVID-19 situation. According to Channel News Asia, the Singaporean government has set aside a resilience budget of s$48 billion for SMEs. The measures taken by the government include income relief for self-employed people, current financing schemes and enhancement of property tax rebate, to name a few.
Similarly, the central bank of the UAE has announced AED 100 billion Targeted Economic Support Scheme to contain the repercussions of COVID-19. In Switzerland, the government have launched a loan programme to support SMEs facing liquidity problems due to the pandemic.
Moreover, the Australian government is providing aid to sole traders in varied aspects including backing business investment, job keeper payment, tax support and many more. It is also supporting SMEs with their support mechanism.
5) Individual Organisations
Smallbizheroes has created a virtual community to connect small businesses impacted by COVID-19 with “heroes” who can help them for free. Lastly, businesses like Aeozo leverage businesses with free marketing tips for crisis management with the motto of having a second hand to help others.
Crisis management through collaboration, funds and grants and some external assistance could be the best thing a business could do to sustain the situation of COVID-19.