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Local businesses feeling impact from coronavirus outbreak

Local businesses are dealing with problems, especially when it comes to getting supplies from China.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Look around Vince Gioffre's CPR Cell Phone Repair store in Louisville and you'll notice three words over and over: "Made in China."

"Pretty much every phone part, whether it's an iPhone or Samsung, is sourced in China," Gioffre said.

Gioffre said close to 100% of all the parts that his repair store uses goes through China at some point during the supply chain before it ends up at his store on Taylorsville Road. 

That's become a problem with the coronavirus outbreak leading many manufacturers in China and other Asian countries to close shop temporarily, which is making it hard for Gioffre and others in his field to find the parts they need at affordable prices.

"We don't know how long or how difficult this will get," he said. "Going back to when SARS was a big thing, we saw a little bit of an impact on the industry as well. So when we heard about the virus, we immediately started stocking up."

Gioffre said he ordered about three months worth of supplies back in January but he has already had to turn some customers away, with parts either unavailable or at an exorbitant rate.

"iPad Minis in particular right now is something that we can't even source right now," he said.

But Gioffre knows he's one of the more fortunate ones. He said he has already seen the scarcity of supplies hit some other competitors even harder.

"We have seen across the industry several stores have closed and lost their employees and everything along with that too," he said.

It's not just the electronics industry in Kentucky that is being affected by the outbreak. In 2019, U.S. Census Bureau data shows Kentucky imported more than $6,337,000,000 worth of goods from China, which ranked second behind Mexico in the value of goods imported.

►Contact reporter Dennis Ting at dting@whas11.com. Follow him on Twitter (@DennisJTing) and Facebook.  

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