The Treasury is expected to unveil a new rescue package for startups after criticism mounted over the emergency loan on offer for small companies to survive the coronavirus crisis, according to senior sources in the tech industry. Details of the package are yet to be finalised, but the newspaper suggested it will centre around a co-investment strategy - where investors back smaller brands and their funding is matched by taxpayers in order to keep angel investors and venture capital firm putting cash into startups after investment activity slowed due to the coronavirus outbreak (The Telegraph).

UK retail sales in March slumped to the lowest level on record as the coronavirus lockdown took its toll on the high street (The Financial Times £). Total sales fell 4.3% in March, compared with 1.8% decline for the same month last year with a sharp contrast in sales before and after the lockdown (The Telegraph, BBC).

Businesses worry the government cash to cover emoployees’ furlough will not arrive in time for payday, with many not having enough to front the cash and risking going bust (The Telegraph).

After a Bakkavor manager admitted social distancing among food factory workers was impossible, supermarket chains have been urged to meet the government to discuss safety (The Times £).

Burger King, KFC and Pret A Manger have or will open certain restaurants around the country for delivery only, after they completely shut down at the beginning of the lockdown (BBC).

Eastern European farm workers are being flown to the UK on charter flights to pick fruit and vegetable crops, with the first flight to land on Thursday carrying 150 Romanian farm workers (BBC).

Whetherspoons might be forced to tap investors for extra £250m if the coronavirus-related crisis in the pub sector continues. The share issue would knock the current company’s value however, with chairman Tim Martin - who owns 32% of the business - risking a wipeout of his fortune (The Telegraph).

Local pharmacies are facing a cash crisis despite a surge in demand due to the coronavirus outbreak. Medicine wholesale prices hav shot up, cutting margins, while longer hours and extra deliveries mean higher pay for staff (BBC).

The coronavirus crisis “has exposed glaring shortfalls in America’s supply chains” writes the FT. Many companies were forced to shut production after workers contracted the virus and now labour shortages are threatening food supply (The Financial Times £).

Dozens of UK businesses are in talks with  advisors to explore a ‘light touch’ administration - the same adopted by Debenhams - to protect companies from creditors during the coronavirus pandemic (The Financial Times £).

Meanwhile restaurant chain Carluccio’s - which collapsed into administration this month - is racing to find a new buyer, though industry sources said it was unlikely a buyer would emerge for the whole company (Sky News).