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The impact of Covid-19 on struggling ethnic minority entrepreneurs' business strategy: the case of Bangladeshi curry houses in the United Kingdom

Razzak, BM, Idris, Bochra, Hasan, Rahaman, Saridakis, George, Hansen, Jared (2023) The impact of Covid-19 on struggling ethnic minority entrepreneurs' business strategy: the case of Bangladeshi curry houses in the United Kingdom. International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior & Research, 29 (8). pp. 1837-1866. ISSN 1355-2554. (doi:10.1108/IJEBR-05-2021-0389) (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:102126)

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Purpose – This paper outlines ways in which struggling ethnic minority entrepreneurial service ventures and their owners might respond to unforeseen economic and social shocks. Interviews with owners of Bangladeshi Curry Houses in the United Kingdom — whom historically have lower performance rates compared to other ethnic minority businesses in the country — reveal that the entrepreneurs’ response strategies undertaken to survive and remain in the business despite the challenges faced from operating in a turbulence environment.

Design/methodology/approach – The authors conducted depth phone interviews with owners of Bangladeshi Curry Houses in London during January and February of 2021. The Gioia methodology was applied to the interview scripts to identify which crisis themes exist.

Findings – Despite no advanced educational training, Bangladeshi owners have applied all of the different crisis management techniques present in larger companies: retrenchment, persevering, innovation, and exit. Although the results show that government schemes aimed at helping small businesses have contributed significantly to their survival, concerns regarding the post-health crisis situation remain challenging and threatening for their growth and survivability.

Originality/value – The results indicates that the ethnic minority owned small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are less likely to plan for the future operations; furthermore, they tend not to have formulated a strategy for dealing with an external shock hence affecting and threatening their performance and competitiveness in the marketplace.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1108/IJEBR-05-2021-0389
Additional information: This author accepted manuscript is deposited under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC) licence. This means that anyone may distribute, adapt, and build upon the work for non-commercial purposes, subject to full attribution. If you wish to use this manuscript for commercial purposes, please contact
Uncontrolled keywords: Covid-19, Ethnic minority firms, Adaptive resilience strategies
Subjects: H Social Sciences
Divisions: Divisions > Kent Business School - Division > Department of Marketing, Entrepreneurship and International Business
Funders: University of Kent (
Depositing User: George Saridakis
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2023 20:44 UTC
Last Modified: 27 Feb 2024 22:24 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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