CORAL SPRINGS, FL – Coral Springs has seen a surge in new business opening in 2020, despite the Covid-19 pandemic hitting small businesses across the country.
The city has registered 545 new businesses in the past 12 months – from 4,161 licensed businesses in Coral Springs in January 2020 to 4,706 in January 2021, according to the city.
It is not known in which industries the new firms are located.
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City business leaders attribute the increase to the expansion of home businesses as well as the greater number of people moving to Coral Springs from the northern states.
“We have great schools, parks and recreation in our city,” said Cindy Brief, President and CEO of the Coral Springs Coconut Creek Regional Chamber of Commerce.
Another reason new businesses are opening up locally and nationally is the growth of e-commerce and online retail services, which replace old physical businesses devastated by the face-to-face economy.
Yet despite the optimistic trend, the local economy continues to suffer from the financial impact of the coronavirus.
Coral Springs’ unemployment rate was 5.6% in December, still up from the pre-pandemic level of 2.9% in January 2020.
Many small businesses across the country predict the worst of the pandemic is yet to come, says one recent index from the United States Chamber of Commerce.
And based on data from last summer, about one in five small businesses closed, according to the Womply firm. These included bars, restaurants, beauty parlors and other retailers that were hit the hardest because so many customers try to stay away from each other.
But there are bright spots in the economy with more entrepreneurs looking to carve out niches in the new Covid-19 world, experts have said.
“I know that a good number of ‘home-based’ businesses have sprung up during this time, which I attribute to the resilience of many community members who may have been laid off or laid off and have pivoted in a new direction, ”said Andrea Jacobs, chamber president and managing partner of Brodzki Jacobs in Coral Springs.
Brief added that the city of Coral Springs and the chamber have worked together to help existing businesses overcome the challenges of the pandemic.
This included webinars and other aids to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), receive personal protective equipment and open safely after the virus stops, Brief said.
In addition, an economic recovery task force has been formed to communicate the needs of the business community to city officials, she said.
Brief added that the chamber, in particular, had helped build bonds, and possibly agreements, between members at a time when “people felt very isolated and lonely.”
Looking ahead, some of the city’s business assistance programs have expired, and without additional federal help, economists warn the recovery will slow and many small businesses will experience tougher times.
Brief is confident, however, that new businesses will continue to open in Coral Springs due to the local focus on creating a business-friendly environment.
“We have incredible leadership in the Town of Coral Springs and in the House,” Brief said.
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