Interview. In Normandy, the level of business failures “is at its lowest level”

Anthony Streicher, president of the GSC association. (©DR)

1,023 Norman business leaders have lost his job inside 2021a number in fall. Explanations with Anthony Streicher, President ofGSC Association (Social guarantee for entrepreneurs).

News: What are the goals of the GSC association?

Anthony Streicher: It is an association founded over 40 years ago by employers’ organizations, with two main objectives. On the one hand, information for business leaders and awareness of the risks of entrepreneurship, because starting a business is great, but also dangerous. It is therefore necessary to be prepared for any eventuality and, more particularly, the loss of a job. On the other hand, the establishment of unemployment benefit, in case of non-compliance (4 out of 10 companies do not exceed the 5-year mark!). This is the protection employers can get through an individual insurance contract with our group of insurers. Unfortunately, today, at the national level, 99% of businessmen and entrepreneurs do not have a plan B: insurance, savings… We therefore seek to promote our protection solution.

“The Channel rose 11.2%”

What are the trends revealed by your study?

AS: In 2021, 1,023 business leaders lost their professional activity in Normandy, a decrease of 27.8% compared to 2020. But the five departments are not the same: with 179 entrepreneurs lost, the Canal had an increase of 11.2% between 2020 and 2021, while the other four fell between 27.7% and 39.5%. We do not face the dreaded bankruptcy tidal wave.

How do we explain?

AS: Since the 1987 numbers, we have found ourselves at a level of failure that was the lowest in two years. This is a reflection of state aid during this health crisis, whatever the cost, of the trickle down of the economic system. For Canal there is certainly an increase, but in 2020 there was a drop of 40%, so it is a catch-up effect. Differences between departments can also be explained by the typology of companies. Thus, there is a higher proportion in agriculture in the Canal, but it is a sector that was heavily impacted in France in 2021.

by sector

Unemployed business leaders in Normandy, breakdown by economic sector and evolution between 2020 and 2021: insurance and financial activities: 0.8% (0%); agriculture: 6.3% (+ 88.2%); commerce: 21.2% (-36.5%); construction: 25.2% (-21%); accommodation, food and beverage establishments: 12.1% (-43.6%); industry: 8.3% (-23.4%); information and communication: 2.3% (-40%); business services: 10.9% (-24.8%); personal services: 3.6% (-31.5%); transport and logistics: 3.2% (-35.3%); other activities: 6.1% (-19.7%).

What is the typical profile of these recently unemployed business leaders?

AS: The average age is 48 years, therefore, a very experienced entrepreneur profile. They are not, by and large, young, out-of-school start-up leaders. For Canal, 8 times out of 10, these are companies with less than 3 employees (SA, SAS, SARL). And 8 times out of 10, the annual turnover is less than €500,000. It is, therefore, the bosses of small companies who have everything to do, everything to manage… But they are not Superman! And, in general, they don’t have access to all information, especially about protection. In case of failure, between the psychological shock, the desire to recover, the housing loan to be paid, the children’s school to pay…, the situation can become very difficult. That’s why you need to be insured when the company is still in good health: in case of default, the insurance is activated 30 days after the judicial liquidation, for the period chosen by the contractor. The vast majority choose to protect themselves for a year. We have an online simulator on the website gsc.asso.fr.

How do you see the future?

AS: Since September-October 2021, insolvencies have risen again and will return to normal levels, with the gradual end of aid. There are also several issues that must be taken into account: recruitment, energy, interruption of international supply of certain products and services, customer behavior that has changed, inflation, the war in Ukraine. many difficulties that can befall the head of the company.

Interview by Nicolas LEPIGEON

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