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Investment Plan for Europe: EIF and EKF Danmarks Eksportkredit sign an InnovFin agreement for innovative companies in Denmark

    Date: 15 September 2016

The European Investment Fund (EIF) and EKF Danmarks Eksportkredit (EKF) have signed a counter-guarantee agreement to increase lending to innovative small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and small mid-caps in Denmark. This transaction benefits from the support of the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the heart of the Investment Plan for Europe.

The new counter-guarantee agreement will allow EKF to provide guarantees at lower premium rates to innovative export companies and their sub-suppliers over the next 2 years. The EIF counter-guarantee is provided under the “EU InnovFin finance for Innovators” initiative with the financial backing from Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. The EU support for innovative Danish companies is expected to generate a portfolio of c. DKK 1,250 million (EUR 167.5 million) of bank loans.

European Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, said: "The SME window of the Investment Plan is proving enormously successful. Just as we hoped, many intermediaries, such as EKF today, have started to collaborate with the EIF which results in small businesses getting the financial boost they badly need. Today's agreement is huge: an additional DKK 1,250 million is now available to innovative Danish companies thanks to the Investment Plan."

Commenting on the signature, EIF Chief Executive Officer, Pier Luigi Gilibert said: “I am pleased to be signing this InnovFin EFSI counter-guarantee agreement with EKF Danmarks Eksportkredit for the benefit of innovative SMEs and small mid-caps. With its wide network of Danish banks I am convinced that export companies in Denmark will receive support to help them develop and grow.”

Anette Eberhard, EKF Chief Executive Officer, said: “EKF already helps more than 500 SME’s each year, most of them with working capital, but we are very content with this new possibility to further help the most innovative and dynamic companies. Premium rates can be a barrier for new and upcoming companies and growth companies with poorer credit ratings. Sharing the risk with EIF allows us to offer more favourable guarantees and credits for this group of companies in cooperation with the banks. The agreement will therefore increase our support for growth and innovation”

Support under EFSI, including the EKF agreement, translates into a quicker positive impact for InnovFin agreements, leading to further investments, growth and faster economic recovery in Europe.

About EIF

The European Investment Fund (EIF) is part of the European Investment Bank group. Its central mission is to support Europe's micro, small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) by helping them to access finance. EIF designs and develops venture and growth capital, guarantees and microfinance instruments which specifically target this market segment. In this role, EIF fosters EU objectives in support of innovation, research and development, entrepreneurship, growth, and employment. More information on EIF's work under the EFSI is available here.

About EKF

EKF is Denmark’s Export Credit Agency. EKF helps Danish export companies and their sub-suppliers thrive and grow. With guarantees from EKF, Danish companies can obtain credits to finance their own operations as well as credits for their customers abroad. EKF also insures companies and banks against the potential financial and political risks of trading with other countries.

EKF is owned and guaranteed by the Danish state and operates as a modern financial enterprise.

Please visit www.ekf.dk/en for more information.

About the Investment Plan for Europe

The Investment Plan focuses on removing obstacles to investment, providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects and making smarter use of new and existing financial resources. The Investment Plan is already showing results. The European Investment Bank (EIB) estimates that by July 2016, the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) triggered more than EUR 115.7 billion of investment in Europe.

Find out the latest EFSI figures including a break-down by sector and by country here. For more information see the FAQs.

About InnovFin

The InnovFin SME Guarantee Facility provides guarantees and counter-guarantees on debt financing of between EUR 25,000 and EUR 7.5 million in order to improve access to loan finance for innovative small and medium-sized enterprises and small mid-caps (up to 499 employees). The facility is managed by EIF, and is rolled out through financial intermediaries – banks and other financial institutions – in EU Member States and Associated Countries. Under this facility, financial intermediaries are guaranteed by EIF against a proportion of their losses incurred on the debt financing covered under the facility.

Press contacts:

EIF: David Yormesor, Tel.: + 352 24 85 81 346, E-Mail: d.yormesor@eif.org

EKF: Søren Weber Stendal, Tel.:+ 45 20 19 45 21, E-Mail: sws@ekf.dk

European Commission: Annikky Lamp, Tel.:+ 32 (0)2 29 56151, E-Mail: annikky.lamp@ec.europa.eu


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