Birmingham small business owner feeling confident they could survive another recession

Published: Sep. 29, 2022 at 11:25 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - There continues to be many questions surrounding the possibility of a recession and while some are feeling pessimistic for what’s to come, others remain optimistic.

The owner of Ted’s Restaurant is feeling confident they’ll be OK.

“I strongly believe in my wife and I - that we will find a way to survive,” said Tasos Touloupis. “Ted’s was established in 1973 and has experienced a lot of things. It has survived.”

The restaurant made it through the 2008 recession and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ty West, the Editor-In-Chief of The Playbook, says many small businesses are feeling similar.

“So we’re seeing a lot of pessimism about the global economy, a lot of pessimism about the national economy and we’re seeing a weird disconnect where still, a good percentage of small businesses are optimistic internally about their business for now,” said West.

He says in the metro-Birmingham area, many businesses aren’t feeling threatened. He adds that if a recession does happen, the South tends to get hit last.

Touloupis says the pandemic taught them a lot of lessons on how to survive on a daily basis, even through uncertainty. Because of that, they are prepared in case the economy falls dramatically.

“My wife and I have taken a strong stance to increase our cash flow,” he added. “Not necessarily that we want to have $100 cash in our pocket, but the operating account to have some cushion.”

“What you’ve seen is more businesses being more nimble and really thinking about diversifying their revenue streams,” said West. “You have some opportunities there so you’re seeing businesses that are doing well are the ones that have been very proactive about really thinking about those things.”

Both West and Touloupis say small business owners must move with the tide to stay afloat.

“We have to adapt,” said Touloupis. “If you cannot be a chameleon, you better start packing and going somewhere to retire.”

West adds that if a recession does happen soon, it will look very different from the 2008 recession. The best thing right now is prepare for the worst and hope for the best.


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