COVID-19 Worse Than The Flood For One Cedar Rapids Company
Bimm Ridder is a company in Cedar Rapids that sells sports apparel and became the poster child of small business flood recovery after 2008. But the current COVID-19 crisis is apparently too much for Gary Ficken's company to withstand.
He told the Gazette that, like many others, he has to lay off most, if not all of his employees at this time. Ficken is one of the owning partners of Bimm Ridder and said:
This is exponentially worse than the flood.
They typically handle 220 orders a week, which has dropped to just a handful in recent weeks. Business is sadly not booming for Bimm Ridder as sports seasons are canceled or postponed and Coronavirus and social distancing remain the top stories in Cedar Rapids, in Iowa, the United States, and the world.
The 34 employees are being allowed to remain on the payroll until their paid time off expires, and Ficken will be able to continue offering them health insurance until the end of April.
It's sad news for a local company ironically coming off the best 3 years in its history.