The new financing instrument will be co-financed 50% by the ICF and 50% by the EU ERDF fund. The line will offer loans under preferential conditions for circulating capital and/or investment in growth projects, the penetration of new markets, or the development of existing companies.
The Institut Català de Finances (ICF) and the European Commission have, within the framework of the BIZBARCELONA exhibition, announced the ICF Eurocrèdit a new 184-million-euro line of financing co-financed 50% with funds from the Catalan public financial institution and 50% from European funds through the ERDF (European Regional Development Fund) programme, within the framework of the 2014-2020 operational programme.
The objective of this new instrument is to facilitate the financing of small and medium-sized businesses through loans with preferential conditions for growth projects, circulating capital to strengthen the general activities of the company, new projects or penetration of new markets, and the development of existing companies.
The beneficiaries of ICF Eurocrèdit funds will be small and medium enterprises with between 10 and 250 employees and a turnover of between 2 and 50 million euros or a balance sheet of between 2 and 43 million euros.
The new line offers, on the one hand, loans for circulating capital and/or investment of between 100,000 and 2 million euros, covering up to 70% of the project, within a period of 2 to 5 years - with a year of grace included - and a 12-month Euribor interest rate plus a 1% differential; on the other hand, those SMEs that are interested will also be able to access loans for investment of between 150,000 and 2.5 million euros, financing up to 70% of the project for a period of 5 to 15 years - up to a 2-year grace period included - and with an interest rate based on the 12-month Euribor plus a 1% differential.
Induced investment: 350 million euros over 5 years
The ICF Eurocrèdit presentation ceremony took place on the stage of the BIZBARCELONA Financing Market at the Montjuïc Exhibition Centre in Barcelona. The General Director of Economic Promotion, Competition and Regulation of the Generalitat of Catalonia, Albert Castellanos, the General Director of Credit and Risk Investments of the Institut Català de Finances (ICF), Anna Àlvarez, and the deputy unit head of the Spain unit, Directorate General of Regional and Urban Policy of the European Commission, Jordi Torrebadella.
As explained by Álvarez, the funding provided by the ERDF and the ICF through this new line will generate an induced investment of 350 million euros over the next 5 years.
For its part, the Generalitat’s Director of Economic Promotion, Competition and Regulation reminded us that this line will be fed by resources Catalonia will receive from the ERDF funds of the current operational programme (2014-2020). Over the seven years, Catalonia will receive a total of 868.4 million euros, a figure that represents 68.1% more than the resources received during the previous programming period (2007-2013).
For Castellanos, this financial instrument represents the main action of one of the priorities of the current operational programme expressed in thematic objective 3 (OT3) for the improvement of competitiveness for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). “ICF Eurocrèdit is aimed at responding to some of the thousands of economically viable SMEs that are suffering some type of total or partial restriction on their financing”, he stated.
Finally, the European Commission’s General Director of Regional and Urban Policy, Jordi Torrebadella, stressed that ICF Eurocrèdit will help SMEs to innovate and to grow in both national and international markets. And he added that, in this way, “small and medium-sized businesses will have a new European instrument to create growth and employment, which is the No. 1 objective of the Juncker Commission”.
For more information about the new facility, go to the following website: ICF Eurocrèdit.