But even though she ordered the sauna in May, it still hasn’t come in.
Despite having no sauna, Hamilton said she’s still paying rent for both spaces.
“Every different product has a little different story,” Lukszys said. “We talked about coffee, we talked about different ingredients at restaurants, we talked about Thanksgiving dinner, we talked about electronics — anything with a with a microchip in it right now has the potential of being being short.”
UW-Madison supply chain expert Pete Lukszys said small businesses all over are dealing with the impacts of the crisis.
Alicia Hamilton owns Bohemian Bodywork, a massage therapy clinic in Madison. She signed a lease in May for the space directly next to hers to expand her business and open a new sauna room.
“I signed the lease and then went to go purchase the sauna,” Hamilton said. “And they’re like, ‘Yeah, you can purchase it, but you’re not going to get it until September.’ September rolls around, nothing. October rolls around nothing.”
Lukszys said the crisis has many different causes, and most tie directly into the pandemic.
“The trucker shortage right now is a big part of this,” he said. “Also, a lot of businesses, their inventories were run down. So they’re trying to restock up their inventory. So in a sense, they’re over-ordering to do that. As well as just a shortage of a lot of different products in stores.”
Lukszys said he sees no end in sight, which is disappointing news for business owners like Hamilton. She said if the sauna doesn’t come in soon, she’ll have to ditch the entire project. “I don’t really have much of a choice,” Hamilton said. “The lease ends in May, and so I’ll have to find money from somewhere to pay for it.”