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Southend businesses slump as almost 200 closed
9:30am Wednesday 6th March 2013 in Local News
SOUTHEND has shown a steep increase in the number of businesses closed last summer, according to recent research by Duport.co.uk.
During July, August and September last year, the number of companies closed in Southend rose to 199, a 55 per cent increase on the same period in 2011. Businesses start ups also fell by 10 per cent as the town struggles through a double-dip recession.
Southend High Street has suffered since the start of the recession, with the independent handbag store Buzz closing in March 2012, and big household names such as Woolworths, TJ Hughes, JJB Sports and Jessops disappearing. There are still several vacant units in the Victoria shopping centre and the High Street, and just off the High Street in Alexandra Street are two empty former restaurants, the former Il Vicolino and Onyx.
Despite the gloomy figures, David Burch from the Chamber of Commerce is upbeat and warns not to be too alarmist. He said: “There is a lot of vibrancy across Essex and in Southend, and businesses cease trading for a variety of reasons. Sometimes there is no longer a demand for them, or someone else has moved in, and sometimes people decide to have a change because they have had enough of running a business.”
The Duport Business Confidence Report for Southend also showed a reduction in the appointment of female directors, although the number of young directors appointed to new companies is on the rise.
For more information, see www.duport.co.uk/southend
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