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4.12.21 – WIBW – TOPEKA, Kan.

As more small businesses reopen their door, a new study says those in Kansas have great potential to recover.

A recent WalletHub study ranks Kansas as the 10th most pandemic-proof state for small businesses.

Tender Loving Care Pet Nursing Hotel was about to open its doors when COVID hit.

The owner of TLC Pet Nursing Hotel, Leslie Fleuranges says it was a challenge to stay afloat.ADVERTISEMENT

“We were just trounced in year one, barely having enough business to keep the doors open. So, we are grateful for whatever funding we can get,” Fleuranges explained. “In order for us to keep our doors open, I frankly had to invest a lot of my own personal money into the business to keep us going on. That’s why I’m so adamant about trying to get grants. Now, the grooming has really helped us to stay in business.”

Flueranges says business is picking up with the pandemic letting up.

“Now that the restrictions have loosened, people are traveling. So, they’re dropping them off for us for a long time for boarding such as weekends or for five days,” Fleuranges said. “Additionally, people are starting to go back to work and they want somewhere to be able to keep their pets during the day, so I take care of business is really picking up.”

A recent WalletHub study found Kansas small business owners may be in a better position to recover. Fleuranges focus, especially, has an advantage.ADVERTISEMENT

“So, the pet industry is kind of a lucky one to be in and navigate through right now, because so many people adopted or purchase pets over the pandemic, you know they have more time to be at home and train them,” WalletHub analyst, Jill Gonzalez explained. “A lot of people got lonely and turned to pets for that reason.”

WalletHub found Kansas 10th-most pandemic proof overall for small business. It also ranks Kansas higher in impact and access to resources and middle-of-the-pack for workforce support.

Still, they say it will take time for small businesses to fully recover.

“Every state has businesses and small businesses that are on the road to recovery. This is simply ranking which states are doing better than others,” Gonzalez said. “So even though it seems sleek for businesses in the state of Kansas, right now they’re actually a lot better off than most in many other states.”ADVERTISEMENT

“I don’t see us being profitable until you know sometime next year it’ll take that long for us to recover from the damage that the pandemic did to us and that’s really unfortunate,” Fleuranges added.

The WalletHub study ranks Kansas 8th in the share of small businesses that received financial assistance from the paycheck protection act (PPP).

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