Solidarity and Support in 2022
Hello everyone, I’m writing to you with regards to our current position, as we enter the new year we are experiencing a worrying cash flow situation, and kindly ask for support to help safeguard the future of our cooperative...
Without support of grants from government and other social enterprise support funds, we would not be here and continue to operate in a budget deficit. Furthermore, as a startup community business formed in 2018, we do not have sufficient reserves to operate in deficit for long without continued and reliable sources of income, and currently find ourselves in a precarious position once more having not received any grant income or significant agency commissions in the last quarter of 2021.
We are confident that our cash flow position will turn around, as it has done before, and we are hopeful to receive further grant support through the Additional Restrictions Grant administered by the local authority of between £10,000 - £25,000. We are also confident that both our creative agency Chapel Street Studio and Bread + Roses have the momentum they need to survive and achieve the sales targets to ensure we emerge from the pandemic more sustainable than ever before.
With up to date financial information we are in a position to create an accurate budget and cash flow projection for 2022 based on operating costs and sales income from 2021. We expect to have this ready and available to share with those interested w/c 17th January, and we have P&L with budget vs actuals from the first three quarters of 2021.
We've requested a repayment holiday from our landlord and a continuation of the 50% rent agreement into 2022. We remain in a repayment holiday for our Government-backed bounce back loan, which we used to refinance the expensive startup loans, and we have also contacted our bank to request a short term extension to our overdraft should we require it.
Over the past 18 months we have restructured and built a team of much more experienced people, improved our board and governance, and indeed our financial policies and procedures, and we have found optimism in the momentum and team cohesion of rebuilding our two cooperative businesses over the past year. And yet, the uncertainty of our precarious cash flow position looms large over this newly formed and confident team.
Our jobs, our livelihoods, and the future of our organisation hangs in the balance. In the context of another uncertain year and our current cash flow situation, I'm wondering if any other cooperative from the network may be able to support us by way of contracting creative services from our cooperative creative agency in the first quarter of this year to help us achieve our sales targets and improve our cash flow position in the immediate future?
Happy to meet to discuss our position or the services we can provide further with anyone interested.
Also hope this is a helpful thread to kick off in the new year, for others in the same position, and for us to call on the strength and support of our cooperative network in times of need.
Solidarity from Bradford, West Yorkshire.