Economics and Business
ISSN 2775-9237 (Online)
Published: 28 May 2020
The Impact of Covid-19 Pandemic Crisis on Micro-Enterprises: Entrepreneurs’ Perspective on Business Continuity and Recovery Strategy
Noor Fzlinda Fabeil, Khairul Hanim Pazim, Juliana Langgat
Universiti Malaysia Sabah, Malaysia
Download Full-Text Pdf
Keywords: Covid-19 Pandemic, Micro-Enterprise, Business Continuity Strategy, Business Recovery Plan
Covid-19 pandemic outbreaks have led many countries to impose travel restrictions and movement controls. In Malaysia, the small business sector is one of the most directly affected by the movement's control order. In fact, the impact is more significant among micro-enterprises than its larger counterparts. Entrepreneurs experience business cancellation or closure and reduced income due to the closure of several supporting sectors such as retails and transportation. There is still a lack of study on the impact of a pandemic outbreak on micro-enterprises in developing countries, especially in relating to business continuity and recovery strategy. It is crucial to explore how micro-entrepreneurs experience crisis and what decision they make for business survival. This study represents the perspectives of two micro-entrepreneurs in the rural area of Sabah, about their business continuity strategy during movement control order. The results of unstructured phone interviews provide insights on business survival approach and recovery plan of micro-enterprises during and after a crisis. This study will hopefully contribute towards the creation of effective support mechanisms through associated entrepreneurial development organizations for micro - entrepreneurs to thrive during and after a crisis.
Bartz,W. & Winkler, A. (2016). Flexible or fragile? the growth performance of small and young businesses during the global financial crisis — evidence from Germany, Journal of Business Venturing, 31(2), 196-215.
Booth, S. A. (1993). Crisis Management Strategy: Competition and change in modern enterprises. London and New York: Routledge
Bourletidis, K. & Triantafyllopoulos, Y. (2014). SMEs survival in time of crisis: strategies, tactics and commercial success stories. Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences, 148, 639-644,
Bresciani, F., Feder, G., Gilligan, D. O., Jacoby, H. G., Onchan, T. & Quizon, J. (2002). Weathering the storm: the impact of the East Asian crisis on farm households in Indonesia and Thailand. The World Bank Research Observer, 17(1), 1-20,
Chinazzi, et al. (2020). The effect of travel restrictions on the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, Science, 6 March.
Cook, J. (2015). A six-stage business continuity and disaster recovery planning cycle. SAM Advanced Management Journal,80(3), 22-33.
Department of Statistics, Malaysia (2020). Survei Khas Kesan Covid-19 kepada Ekonomi dan Individu.
Devece, C., Ortiz, M. P. & Armengot, C. R. (2016). Entrepreneurship during economic crisis: Success factors and paths to failure. Journal of Business Research, 69(11), 5366-5370.
Fabeil, N. F., Marzuki, K. M., Razli, I. A., Majid, M. R. A. & Pawan, M. T. A. (2019). The impact of earthquake on small business performance: evidence from small accommodation services in Ranau, Sabah, International Academic Journal of Business Management, 6(1), 301-313. 10.9756/IAJBM/V6I1/1910031
Flynn, D. T. (2007). The impact of disasters on small business disaster planning: a case study, Disasters, 31(4), 508-515.
Gavan Cushnahan (2004) Crisis Management in Small-Scale Tourism, Journal of Travel & Tourism Marketing, 15(4), 323-338.
Herbane, B. (2013). Exploring crisis management in UK small and medium sized enterprises. Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 21(2),82-95.
Karabag, S. F. (2020). An unprecedented global crisis! the global, regional, national, political, economic and commercial impact of the coronavirus pandemic, Journal of Applied Economics and Business Research,10 (1), 1-6.
Kepenach, R. J. (2007). Business continuity plan design. Proceeding of the Second International Conference on Internet Monitoring and Protection, 1-5 July 2007, USA. IEEE, 10.1109/ICIMP.2007.11
Liu, Y., Gayle, A. A., Smith, A. W. & Rocklov, J. (2020). The reproductive number of Covid-19 is higher compared to SARS coronavirus, Journal of Travel Medicine, 27(2).
Naidoo, V. (2010). Firm survival through a crisis: The influence of market orientation, marketing innovation and business strategy. Industrial Marketing Management, 39(8), 1311-1320,
North, D. & Smallbone, D. (2007). Developing entrepreneurship and enterprise in Europe's peripheral rural areas: Some issues facing policy-makers. Journal of European Planning Studies, 14(1), 41-60,
Peeri, N. C., Shrestha, N., Rahman, M. S., Zaki, R., Tan, Z., Bibi, S., Baghbanzadeh, M., Aghamohammadi, N., Zhang, W. & Haque, U. (2020). The SARS, MERS and novel coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemics, the newest and biggest global health threats: what lessons have we learned? International Journal of Epidemiology, 1-10.
Pursiainen, C. (2018). The Crisis Management Cycle. Routledge.
Qiu, W., Rutherford, S., Mao, A. & Chu, C. (2017). The pandemic and its impact. Health, Culture and Society, 9(10),
Quarantelli, E. L., Lagadec, P., & Boin, A. (2007) A Heuristic approach to future disasters and crises: New, old, and in-between types, Handbook of Disaster Research, 16-41.
Ritchie, B. W. (2003). Chaos, crises and disasters: a strategic approach to crisis management in the tourism industry, Tourism Management, 25(6), pp. 669-683.
RTM (2020). 9 April 2020, [LIVE] #Bicara Naratif - Pakej Rangsangan Ekonomi: Manfaat Untuk Semua, Retrieved from
Siemens, L. (2012). Challenges, responses and available resources: success in rural small businesses. Journal of Small Business and Entrepreneurship, 23(1), 65-80,
SME Annual Report (2016). Special highlights economic census 2016: profile of SMEs, Department of Statistics, Malaysia.
SME Corp Malaysia (2014). New definition of SMEs. Retrieved from
Smith, W. & Freedman, D. o. (2020). Isolation, quarantine, social distancing and community containment: pivotal role for old-style public health measures in the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak, Journal of Travel Medicine, 27 (2).
Sohrabi, C., Alsafi, Z., O'Neill, N., Khan, M., Kerwan, A., Al-Jabir, A., Iosifidis, C. & Agha, R. (2020). World Health Organization declares global emergency: A review of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19), International Journal of Surgery, 76, pp. 71-76.
Yu-lian, W. (2008). The Optimization Model of Distribution Channels Farm Produce in Heilongjiang Province. Commercial Research, Issue 4.