Reply To: Hi , firstly I saw an article the other day by Andy Hamilton regarding helping start-ups , and it made a lot of sense . Thanks ! My problem is that 12 months ago I started working on an idea for a job listing site . I have spent quite a bit of time and money getting most things in place . I was still working a lower-paying day job , and borrowed some money . Yes , I know , it was a punt , it was always going to be tight , but I felt it was worth a try .Then Covid hit , my income dropped to below my rent and loan repayments ( which total around $3000 a month ) and I have used up all my money , the site development ( mostly done in Australia ) has stalled , there are ongoing costs ( only a few hundred a month , a business phone line , internet , site hosting is on a dedicated server on contract , etc ) . Even things like travelling to Australia for one-on-one training , which has effectively already been part-paid for as part of the contract , won’t happen , both because of Covid , but also airfares and accom would be a problem now .The site never traded of course , I have a Business Number , but it has never paid me anything ( no wages )  , and it has never filed a GST return or had any income . Basically , I don’t seem to qualify for any Government help , I’m out of $$$ and the loan payments will start being dishonoured in a month . Total expenses ( which have been paid from my bank account ) are around $50k , but more than half of that is website costs , so around $20k has been spent in NZ , and therefore I may be able to claim a couple of thousand in GST back . Apart from that , which may stall things a month or so , any ideas ?By the way , I have talked to the 2 main lenders , no real help ( and some extra fees too if I refinance , to really rub it in ) .I appear to be one of those zombie businesses that has fallen through the rules — Covid has cost quite a bit , but as I wasn’t trading or employing anyone pre-lockdown , I don’t seem to qualify for anything . Thanks .


HI Graeme – I am very sorry, and there are some real lessons in this for others reading this – it does not help you, but it does help people who are thinking about borrowing – so thank you for sharing.

Did you access the SB Cash Flow loan from the IRD? I know you would prefer no more debt, but they have just opened it up to businesses started recently, and the interest free period is now 2 years?