As the year begins small businesses are decrying low business due to customers’ declined buying power.
Budget constraints in the first month of the year due to excessive spending in the Christmas season often results in customers revising their spending patterns in January
The Patriot Business caught up with some of small scale business operators around Gaborone.
Street vendor Portia Dipitso who sells food in Game City mall revealed that the business is currently not doing well at the moment as compared to the other days.
She said the current break or closure of Botho University is also having a huge impact on the sales as she mostly targets students as top clients. “Of course it is January and we all know how it is hard for everyone including us businesses to thrive easily in this period of the year. There is business but it is not flourishing like I could get profit in any other time of the year,” she said.
She, however, remained adamant that the situation will soon turn around and things will be back to normal towards the end of the month predicting that February everything will be on track.
Moagisi Dikobe, another small scale retailer selling airtime, soft drinks and sweets in the bus rank shared the same sentiments on how the business is quite slow in the early phase of January. He said he depend on a few major clients for the bulk of their revenue and as such the business loses a significant amount of profit if one or more of the clients reduces its purchase amount in this hard month.
He said he ends up being forced not to come to work in some of week days because of lack of availability of people in the city centre as some of the businesses or companies have not yet resumed business in the New Year.
“This first week it has been difficult in the business because the city centre is not yet busy but hopeful on the 15th maybe the situation will better up as some people will be returning to work,” he added.
Subdued business is also heating hard on the taxi and Combi business.
A combi operator in Tlokweng Samuel Moabi revealed that the business is not doing well in the meantime as this is even evidenced by shortage of combis in the route at the moment. Some of his colleagues are keen to start business after January 20 and some in early February for better profit generation.