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After losing a company to COVID, owners seek the next gig

As airlines slashed flights and furloughs appeared inevitable in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, Mike Catania sensed there would be little need for a service that helped airline crews find short-term housing. So, Catania and his fellow owners shut down Padloop in early March, even though the nearly year-old company had just broken […]

people with masks shopping

Preparing for spike in cases as snowbirds head to Southwest Florida

Coronavirus cases are down in Southwest Florida but cases seem to be increasing in other states. With season beginning soon, will the snowbirds bring those cases down with them? It’s too early to tell, but many business owners in our area say it’s worth the risk. Bob Heiny takes his coffee outside and drinks it […]

Small businesses in Charlotte County encourage masks but have trouble enforcing policy

Many small businesses are following the larger chains as they begin to require masks for shopping and visiting. “Everyone has to have a mask on,” said Sherrie Moody, Executive Director of the Charlotte Players Theater. No matter the performance, when the seats are filling up at the theater, masks must be worn because Moody believes […]

LeeCARES programs set to give financial assistance to individuals, small businesses

Millions of dollars in financial relief will be going to families and business owners in Lee County. Lee County residents and businesses can apply to get help with rent and childcare through the LeeCARES programs starting Tuesday. And, if you’re a business owner, you can ask for what the county calls “relaunch” money. Lee County […]

Cape Coral restaurant holds out for PPP loan, employee struggles after layoff

Thousands of small businesses nationwide are getting a second chance at a financial lifeline, as the federal government is beginning to hand out another $310 billion dollars Monday. Some Southwest Florida business owners are desperate for a cash infusion, not just to stay in business but to feed the families of their employees. One of […]

Paycheck Protection Program out of money; thousands of small businesses shut out

A key piece of the federal government’s stimulus efforts to help small businesses and their employees has run out of money, shutting out thousands of potential borrowers who were seeking aid amidst the coronavirus-driven economic plunge. The U.S. Small Business Administration said Thursday morning the Paycheck Protection Program wouldn’t be accepting any more applications for […]

Small businesses wait for loans to stay afloat

As businesses shut their doors or reduce their hours, many are hoping they can get a small business loan to stay afloat until the economy improves, but some business owners said the loans aren’t coming fast enough. Michael Fattah owns Ristorante Farfalla, an Italian restaurant in Estero. “It’s a bunch of good employees that I […]

Trump administration secures help from private sector for small businesses

White House press release: THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION CALLS ON THE PRIVATE SECTOR AND DELIVERS FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS After calling on the private sector to step-up for small businesses, the Trump administration delivers major commitments from these public-private partnerships. Goldman Sachs Deliverable: • Commits to $500 million in capital and critical infrastructure to Treasury-certified Community […]

Downtown Fort Myers shop owner says coronavirus fears bad for business

The coronavirus is having an economic impact on cities throughout the U.S. While some businesses are seeing a boom, others are empty. We spoke to a small business owner in Southwest Florida who told us how it’s impacting her. Owner Florence Del Fondo of Le Macaron French Pastries in downtown Fort Myers came to America […]