My Strategy For Surviving Coronavirus
By Hadi Brooks, owner of Rays Ice Cream which has been operating for nine years and sells direct to consumers via shops in Swindon's Old Town and in Royal Wootton Bassett. The team also offer home made high quality ice cream to wholesale customers including restaurants, pubs and hotels in Wiltshire and beyond.
When did you realise the Coronavirus could be a problem for you and your business?
I realised a month or so ago when it became clear the virus was not going to be contained in China. It only really hit big time though when the official advice came to avoid cafes, pubs, theatres etc. Our wholesale business dried up almost immediately as we supply pubs and restaurants.
We’ve taken steps to alter the way we operate our shops, becoming takeaway only for example, and we’ll have to see if anyone comes. It’s likely to be a worsening picture as more and more people self-isolate though.
What has been your plan to continue?
For the wholesale business we’ve spent this week making some stock so that we can then give staff some holidays and still fulfil any orders that do come through.
In the shops we have put in easy to access handwash stations, given all the team extra training and become takeaway only for now. We are working on a new (temporary) home delivery service which should launch in the next day or two.
What advice would you give to others in business?
Hang in there. Review all your costs. Stay visible so invest in marketing - time or money or both. Help each other as much as you can.
What can we do to help each other?
Wash your hands more than ever before and heed the official health advice. Talk to others and lend an ear of understanding. We’re all pretty shell shocked right now but we will get through this together.
Your parting thought?
You never know what’s around the corner!
For a temporary period they are offering deliveries to homes within a 15 minute radius of both of their shops. For more information visit www.RaysIceCream.co.uk or www.RaysWholesale.co.uk