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SCORE Survey: Half of small businesses in U.S. report operating at a loss today

COVID-19 has had a large impact on small business profitability, with only 33.5% of small business owners describing their business as profitable today, compared to 55.1% of small business owners before the pandemic, according to new survey data published by SCORE, mentors to America’s small businesses.

Data also suggests that small business owners are cutting costs by reducing employee hours and pay (31%) and temporarily laying off employees (25%). Small business owners have been quick to adapt to COVID-19, with 43.1% providing employees with personal protective equipment (PPE) and 34.4% implementing teleworking policies. Still, only 12.2% of small business owners report their business as profitable and growing today, compared to 32% of small business owners before the pandemic.

Small business owners agree that stimulus checks to individuals (66%), free advertising credits (52%) and small business mentorship (50%) would be the most helpful forms of assistance at this time. Bridget Weston, CEO, SCORE shares that, “COVID-19 forced businesses to make significant changes in their operations, just to remain in business.

Data shows that 70.8% of small business owners have had to change their operations to include things like personal protective equipment, new safety protocols, and telework since March 2020. SCORE understands that change isn’t always easy, but SCORE mentors are here to help at every step of the way.” Key findings of COVID-19’s impact on small businesses:

— Half of small businesses (48.7%) report operating at a loss today.

— Small business owners report that stimulus checks (66%), extension of PPP loans (30.8%) and extension of enhanced unemployment benefits (30.4%) would be the most helpful forms of government assistance.

— Optimism for future growth persists. More than half of all business owners (55.2%) feel somewhat or very optimistic about growth in the next 12 months.

Maine entrepreneur launches Business Wise

Business Wise, a professional consulting and marketing agency, is being launched by successful Belfast, Maine, entrepreneur, George Frangoulis. 


Frangoulis is the founder and CEO of Business Wise. As head of the enterprise, Frangoulis says his mission is to help make its clients’ businesses better — more efficient and more profitable. 


Frangoulis has extensive experience starting, scaling up, and selling business ventures. He is also a former Certified SCORE Mentor and has been an advisor for many Mid-coast Maine companies and organizations. 


In addition to his business experience, he has served as a college professor of business management, marketing, advertising, and public relations. 


Business Wise offers business consulting, digital marketing and product branding solutions. For example, by utilizing its video services, business clients can tell their stories to the world. 


Business Wise also provides an online business school, In Business Academy, to give entrepreneurs ideas, insight and information to run  successful operations.


Frangoulis is currently an adjunct professor at Thomas College in Waterville, as well as the producer and host of the community television show, Good Morning Belfast!


Chamber hires new Executive Director

Belfast Area Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce the hiring of our new Executive Director, a person who will be familiar to many in our community!


Dorothy Havey has accepted the role, succeeding Steve Ryan the outgoing director. Dorothy expects to start in her new role in early July 2021.

Dorothy has served our community in many ways over the years. She was the Executive Director of Our Town Belfast in its early days, was Director of Finance for the Penobscot Marine Museum, and then lead this Chamber during 2013 – 2014.


Upon leaving the Chamber, she was Director of Constituent Services for Sen. Mike Thibodeau for several years, and is now the Director of Development for Waldo CAP. 


In accepting the position, Dorothy said, “I’d like to congratulate Steve Ryan on his retirement and applaud the staff and board of directors on the success of the Chamber. It is exciting to be returning to the position and I look forward to the years ahead as we welcome visitors, friends and family”.


Dorothy lives in Belfast with her husband and the family pets. She enjoys her role as a Belfast Free Library Trustee and is an active member and past president of Rotary.

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