National Small Business Week is a tradition that spans over 50 years. It gives us the opportunity to celebrate small businesses and the contributions they’ve made towards local communities and the national economy. A small business is classed as a business which runs with up to 49 employees.
You probably didn't know this, but at the start of 2020, there were 5.94 million small businesses. This makes up 99.3% of the total business within the UK. As well as that, SMEs account for 99.9% of the business population overall! (6.0 million businesses).
Before you dive in, have you thought about offsetting your business’ products or services with solutions for sustainability? Visit Gone West’s Carbon Footprint Offsetting page to learn all you need to know about the services we offer.
Gone West’s Story
Gone West started out as one man’s vision, James Hughes, our Founder and Managing Director. Since our founding in 2013, we have grown significantly, but we are still a small business. Despite this, we’ve managed to plant over 5 million trees, and that number is still growing! But before we talk facts and figures, you need to know a little more about us…
We are a tree planting company, simply put. Our goal is to create environmental and social benefits around the world. We want to create ethical, green jobs, and help to establish and restore natural habitats. We are here to help reduce everyone’s carbon footprint, businesses and individuals alike.
Have you checked our Seedrs Campaign? If you would like to help us pursue our vision, this is a great opportunity that allows you to invest in Gone West. (Capital at risk. Approved by Seedrs)
Not only that, but there are now more climate-focused investment options than ever before. In July 2020, Moneyfacts revealed that 140 ethical unit trusts had grown by 4% in the 12 months to 1 July 2020, compared to a contraction of 1.5% for those not in the ethical category.
Why Small Businesses Are Suffering!
Covid-19 has affected the majority of the world negatively; but worryingly, it has been reported that more than half of UK’s small businesses owners have experienced burnout since the start of the pandemic.
This could be down to many factors. The main factor being the dreaded ‘pingdemic’, which is occurring due to the rise in NHS Test and Trace self isolation alerts. Despite the lifting of restrictions on the 19th July 2021, the NHS Test and Trace app sent out a record 689,313 ‘pings’ telling people to self-isolate in the same week. This led to many small business owners having to close temporarily, due to employees being unable to attend work as they had to self isolate. There have also been fewer customers due to self-isolation, resulting in up to 12% of businesses expecting to lose £10,000 in revenue.
Not only that, but thousands of SMEs that received government loans and opted in the furlough scheme can’t afford to make repayments amid limited cash flows. Around 59% of SMEs in the UK used government loans or furlough schemes during the pandemic. At least 10% can’t repay the loan due to less revenue, and 16% of SMEs were forced to stop trading for a period as a result.
How Can You Help
It’s tougher than ever to be a small business owner right now.
There are plenty of ways you can help small businesses. Share their social media posts, leave positive reviews on their Facebook and Google pages, and recommend them to anyone and everyone you can!
To help, we want to bring your attention to some small businesses we endorse or have partnered with. These aren't just any businesses, they help the world become a better place. All the businesses below have either donated to us, planted trees with us, or are eco-friendly businesses we fully support. What more do you need to know? So, get scrolling and go support one of these amazing businesses!
Barba 'N' Juice is a Lifestyle Company that aims to bring health benefits derived from completely natural elements in a ready to drink product.
They love nature and want to offer ‘Juicers’ products that are good for the body, mind and the planet! The product is based on their love and respect for the planet, as they firmly believe that a healthy planet can give us all the energy we need to improve ourselves as individuals and support us as a collective.
Curame is the pinnacle of a small business to support, as it is run by a one woman team, Shanti Ganesha! All the more reasons to support them, they specialise in selling top quality leather goods which are 100% handmade, not only that they are sourced and made in Venice, Italy ensuring the highest of quality.
There are pieces ranging from bags to plant holders to mouse pads! Their products are all made with genuine vegetable tanned leather and although they are curated and produced in Italy, they ship worldwide! They also plant a tree with us for every product sold.
Farm Urban is an innovative small business who develop ways to grow food in urban environments. They do this whilst working alongside schools, allotment owners, residents’ associations, hospitals and universities to develop programs and education around sustainable urban living. Not only that, but they install and manage high-tech urban farms that produce low cost food in a sustainable and cost-effective way. This helps regenerate communities, provide jobs, promote health, and lower carbon emissions. Check out and help support their projects here.
Hammer beer is an Italian based brewery which embodies the avant-garde frontier of an evolution, they have several unique beer styles, and are renowned for their innovative products. They even have a beer line which helps the planet, as every beer sold they plant a tree with us! Be sure to check out their website and products here.
Kip & Nook hosts the ultimate getaway with its collection of unique and quirky places to stay, in the stunning backdrop of the Yorkshire countryside. These bespoke locations, varying from barns to containers, offer the most amazing eligible places for a perfect staycation in the UK.
In addition to all this, Kip&Nook have a strong conservation ethic behind their business too. They have partnered with Gone West, planting a tree with us for every one of their bookings. We've already planted 2,700 trees on their land surrounding the cabin. Go get booking!
Our Italian partner, LG LESMO, are a synonym for quality craftsmanship. They have a huge collection of extendable tables, transformable furniture, and space-saving chairs. Thanks to over 30 years of experience in the transformable furniture industry, they can offer you a wide range of solutions to smartly furnish your home. It gets even better! For every table carefully crafted, produced, and sold, LG LESMO plants one tree with Gone West!
Moonlight Design is one of the UK’s most premier garden and interior lighting consultancies. They can transform your home, garden or business with magical, designer lighting displays. In addition to that, they offer a comprehensive, countrywide design and installation service for private and corporate clients. Such clients include award-winning garden designers and landscape architects. They also supply a wide range of light fittings and remote controls via their online shop.
The Solid Wood Flooring Company is a high class flooring company who care about sustainability. It's in their policy to only source from well-managed, legal, sustainable forests.
As a family company, they pride themselves in the service that they offer, working on the principles of high quality products, great service and competitive pricing.
Tintex is a textiles company that believes that fashion can truly make a difference in tackling climate change. They have been crafting smart jersey fabrics for over 20 years for some of the most influential fashion, athleisure and lingerie brands.
Originally founded in Portugal in 1998, they aim to amplify and develop eco, sustainable strategies for their whole production process. There is no sustainability without innovation, which is why they invest in fabric innovation to manufacture smarter textiles with high-tech performance. Go check out their range here.
Urban Front is a famous door design and manufacturing business. They have carved out a reputation as innovators and leaders in the field of modern door design and manufacturing for over 15 years. Powered by a purposeful vision and a passion for bespoke craftsmanship and innovation, Urban Front is a thriving family business based in Buckinghamshire, UK, where every door is handcrafted to the highest specifications in their workshop. So if you are in need of a high spec door, check them out!
If you are enjoying this article, why not check out Gone West’s Blog page to keep up with all our posts and exciting ventures?
Not only are there fantastic small businesses who plant trees with us and help revive our planet in the process, there are also bigger companies who are involved. Some help our GoodBox initiative,hosting donation stands for us in their locations. Our Goodbox initiative started when we struck up a partnership with Goodbox who make it possible for donations to be made using contactless technology which helps maximise fundraising for good causes (in our example donations to plant trees).
The money that is donated goes towards our Acorns to Oaks campaign which focuses on giving young and unemployed people the chance at employment within the forestry sector via us. Acorns to Oaks essentially helps us provide the tools and ables us to hire and motivate young people to plant our trees.
So be sure to check out our partners who host our goodbox and give them a visit:
If we have piqued your interest with our goodbox initiative and you are a store owner, or know of a store who would like to host one of our goodboxes please email us at email@example.com
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our Small Business Appreciation Week Blog and have had a good browse at these businesses. Do go on to support a few of them!