More small and mid-sized Dutch businesses go bust
The number of companies declared bankrupt in November was significantly higher than a year earlier. According to a monthly report from the Dutch Chamber of Commerce, the number of bankruptcies among small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in particular is still increasing. The private security sector, on the other hand, grew steadily in a year's time.
A total of 176 companies went bankrupt in November, compared to 124 a year earlier. This means that the number of bankruptcies is 5 percent lower than in October, although the number of bankruptcies among SMEs has been rising since August. In contrast, the number of bankrupt single-person businesses, including freelancers remained stable.
Joris Knopen, professor at Tilburg University, explained that freelancers have low fixed costs. "For example, they have no business premises or stocks and by definition no staff. Self-employed people therefore rarely go bankrupt. The situation is clearly different in SMEs and the vulnerability is therefore greater."
A sector that is flourishing is the security industry, according to the Chamber of Commerce. Since last year, the number of private security companies has increased from 6,528 to 9,224. That increase is partly because in November this year the number of terminations remained almost the same, but the number of start-ups doubled on an annual basis.
There is a particular need for security at construction sites and at events, according to the Chamber of Commerce. The demand for security guards is also increasing at reception centers for asylum seekers and in mental health care.
Reporting by ANP