Two Easters and a Mayday down, but caution beats lockdown 4

James Anderson Bandai Namco BNAE Roadmap
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BNAE’s James Anderson is fairly stoic about the roadmap – at least there’s something to work with, he suggests. But the loss of three bank holidays does rankle and the continued confusion surrounding FECs and AGCs makes the roadmap to recovery a bumpier one than hoped for.

 

Does the government’s roadmap provide you with a clear path for a return to business?

Actually, I do think it does this time. We have clear and cautious milestone dates set, and the renewed tactic aimed at a one-way escape from lockdown is probably the best course of action we could hope for. The wait is and has been long and tedious, but we should probably appreciate the idea that we are moving forward in the knowledge that it’s a superior system to the haphazard approaches that we’ve endured previously. Caution beats Lockdown 4.

What’s missing from the roadmap for your business?

In short… 3 bank holidays. This year we will yet again miss the two Easter holidays and May Day – crucial times for seasonal businesses. I actually initially and optimistically believed we would be classified among the openings on April 12th. There does seem to be a lack of clarity on FECs and AGCs and a confusion as to why gyms and retail are considered more reliable in terms of lower transmission rates.

There is no real evidence as to why this is but seems to be simply the need to open the UK in small increments, and their luck would have them go first. That being said, although it is still far off, I’m just grateful to have a date to strive towards and prepare for with the additional belief that there will be no backward steps from here on out.

We have the budget this week, what does the chancellor need to do to make the roadmap work for you?

Additional support would be welcomed but we may be naive to think the chancellor would do anything for us at this point, we can only continue to look after ourselves and our industry and hold out for relief come May 17th. Most likely, the next best thing we can hope for would be more support for the customers in the market whose benefits would rise up the supply chain in terms of reduced or abolished VAT on AM machines and some rates relief again.

I feel we’re on the home straight now and we can build our momentum throughout what is due to be, in more ways than one, a very rewarding Summer of 2021.


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