Coronavirus Guidance for British Luxury Businesses

In this new feature, we aim to share official Coronavirus guidance surrounding the financial support available for British luxury businesses from the government. We encourage members to check back regularly as this story will be updated as advice is published.

As we all find ways to navigate the new normal from both a business and personal perspective in relation to Coronavirus, Walpole wants to reassure members that we are doing everything we can to ensure that your business priorities and concerns are being raised in Westminster and in Brussels, through European luxury goods association (ECCIA), which is especially important given the integration of our supply and distribution chains across Europe.

Taking care to protect member information, we shared the findings of Walpole’s latest Coronavirus survey and our one to one briefings with the CBI, DIT and BEIS as well as our colleagues in ECCIA. It was very positive to see so many of the business support measures we asked for included in the Chancellor’s latest announcement on Friday. Whilst the package of financial support is unprecedented in its depth and scale, questions remain how businesses can practically access the funding, grants and loans and what support will be put in place for the self-employed.

Walpole is working closely with the CBI to bring members up-to-date guidance on further details, how to access the financial packages and additional measures relating to the self-employed.

Please see below an overview of the additional measures announced on Friday.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The Chancellor announced the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, which will be accessible for all businesses. The details of the scheme include:
– The Government will pay up to 80% of furlough workers’ salary (up to £2,500 per month)
– This is a grant, which businesses do not have to repay, and the first grants will be paid within weeks; it should all be up and running before the end of April
– The pay will be backdated to 1 March 2020 and covers employees who were in employment on the 28th February
– The scheme will run for a maximum of 3 months and employees cannot work during that period.

Q1 VAT payments will be deferred
– There will be no payments between now and the end of June
– Businesses will have until April 2021 to pay this back
– This is a £30bn package.

Additional measures
– The Chancellor also announced the Universal Credit standard allowance would be increased by 12% over the next 12 months
– The minimum income floor for Universal Credit will be suspended
– Self-assessment payments are deferred until January 2021
– The Chancellor also announced a £1bn support package for renters to cover around 30% of market rents.

Accessing financial support

Please click here for more information.