NEW YORK, Dec. 14, 2020 /PRNewsCentre/ — The majority of Israeli owners of restaurants in New York State do not believe their businesses can survive Covid-19 without being able to offer patrons an indoor dining option, according to the findings of a study released today by the New York – Israel Business Alliance.
The study offers a snapshot of the challenges confronting the restaurant industry during the pandemic and the measures adopted to overcome them.
"New York’s restaurant industry stands at the forefront of a vexing, high-stakes public policy decision that, in many cases, pits economic livelihood against physical health," said NYIBA president Aaron Kaplowitz. "Based on the study’s findings, Israeli restaurant owners are by no means immune to the difficulties posed by the pandemic and, nevertheless, remain confident that they will make it through these trying times."
According to the results, 77% of Israeli restaurant owners believe that they need to offer indoor dining in order to remain financially viable. Even so, with cold weather limiting outdoor seating options, 93% of the restaurateurs remain confident that their businesses will survive the pandemic.
Almost two-thirds of the restaurant owners feel that the government has been helpful during this ordeal, and respondents are evenly split on whether the government has clearly communicated standards and regulations.
Even with 93% of Israeli restaurants receiving federal loans through the Paycheck Protection Program, primarily intended for entities to retain employees, at least 70% of the establishments have been forced to downsize staff during the pandemic. A number of owners specified the need for a second PPP loan or other form of government stimulus.
Half of the respondents claim that another government stimulus would be most helpful to restaurants at this time, while 35% cited the return of in-person office work or tourists as the most beneficial boost.
"The feedback we’re receiving from an industry that must squeeze a profit out of tight margins is that it needs more help," Kaplowitz said. "There are other factors, of course, that are contributing to the economic hardships, such as reduced foot traffic and an inability to attract new customers."
A majority of the owners have adopted new technology solutions to help their businesses stay afloat, such as updating online order and delivery systems.
"Israeli business owners across all industries have shown a willingness to adapt and innovate," Kaplowitz said. "I think that part of the reason Israelis are drawn to New York and New Yorkers are drawn to Israel is that both business cultures address challenges head-on and require resilience in order to succeed."
From October 19 through December 9, 2020, NYIBA distributed a questionnaire to 100 Israeli owners of restaurants in New York State. The data presented in the findings is based on the 30 owners who responded. Throughout its research, NYIBA used publicly available information and individual outreach to identify and verify that there are 173 Israeli-owned restaurants in the state today.
About the New York – Israel Business Alliance
The mission of the New York – Israel Business Alliance is to create economic opportunities between New York State and Israel. Guided by data, NYIBA monitors economic development activity and trends in the public and private sectors to identify bilateral business growth potential. NYIBA hosts information seminars, organizes trade missions, and provides its members with funding notifications and investment opportunities nationwide. Learn more at www.nyisrael.org.
SOURCE: New York – Israel Business Alliance