Some 4,700 new catering businesses established in NL during Covid epidemic
Despite the very dark scenarios predicted for the hospitality industry since the outbreak of the coronavirus epidemic in the Netherlands, thousands of entrepreneurs still opened catering businesses. Between March and September, nearly 4,700 catering companies were established in the country, BNR reports based on figures from the Chamber of Commerce.
According to hospitality association KHN, there are several reasons why entrepreneurs were not put off by all the negative reports. Some started preparing to open their business long before the pandemic, KHN chairman Rober Willemsen said. "You don't decide now to start a catering business next month, it takes time. Many plans were already made last year."
Another contributing factor is that the coronavirus led to interesting locations becoming available, as other businesses had to close their doors. "If you can get to your dream location for relatively little money and you have the means to survive a while without support, that can be interesting," Willemsen said to BNR.
The closure of catering establishments in the second coronavirus lockdown also caught entrepreneurs by surprise, Willemsen said. "I thought the catering industry was doing more than well with regard to virus control. I didn't see that closure coming either," he said.
The KHN has been warning of a wave of bankruptcies among catering businesses for months. According to BNR, so far there's been a few dozen bankruptcies per month.