Make or break; Northam cafes at risk of collapse

Make or break; Northam cafes at risk of collapse

Coronavirus
COVID-19 has brought with it a wave of uncertainty for a number of Wheatbelt businesses.

COVID-19 has brought with it a wave of uncertainty for a number of Wheatbelt businesses.

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COVID-19 has brought with it a wave of uncertainty for a number of Wheatbelt businesses.

Aa

COVID-19 has brought with it a wave of uncertainty for a number of Wheatbelt businesses.

Whether reducing their operating hours or temporarily closing their doors, business looks a little bit different as regulations on social gatherings continue to change.

For Brad and Sue Day, owners of Northam cafes Happy Days Coffee Pot and 2Days Cafe, the future of everything they own rides on how they fare in the coming months.

The couple have had to lay off all but one staff member, continuing trade as a trio.

"Business in Northam was just starting to pick up after a very slow year - we were just starting to pick up when the virus hit," Mr Day said.

"The longer this goes on, the more debt we will be getting into.

"When this is all over it will be a case of whether we can get ourselves out of that debt.

"At the moment we are okay, but if this goes on for two or three months we might not survive."

It was only a few months ago that the couple celebrated the launch of their second cafe, 2Days, a feat that was considered a sign of business success.

Coronavirus could not have come at a worse time.

"I was getting on top of the new cafe and starting to show a little profit," Mrs Day said.

"I was getting excited because we were making a great reputation for ourselves at our new site.

"I don't want to fail - I've got to be there and support my customers as they're supporting me.

"I'm determined that I am not going to lose my home and my livelihood - it's not happening.

"You want to go home, crawl up in a ball and cry but you've got to get up in the morning and go to work."

The duo are not the only locals with business concerns, with big names like the Dome Cafe closing their doors after being opened to the Northam public for a matter of weeks.

"We're not alone in this," Mr Day said.

"As a business we are getting great support from our financial institutions and the Northam Chamber of Commerce.

"As long as the Health Department lets us open, we'll keep trading.

"We're not just going to shut the doors."

The story Make or break; Northam cafes at risk of collapse first appeared on The Avon Valley Advocate.

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