The InnovFin agreement, the first of its kind in Georgia, will enable ProCredit Bank Georgia to provide loans to innovative companies over the next two years with the support of a guarantee provided by the EIF and backed by Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation. The guarantee provided in the agreement with the EIF covers 50% of each loan disbursed by ProCredit Bank Georgia within the framework of the initiative. This support designed to benefit innovative companies is expected to generate a loan portfolio of EUR 50 million.
Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: “Horizon 2020, our research and innovation programme, is open to the world, and a productive relationship with Eastern Partnership countries such as Georgia is an important part of our strategy. This deal takes our cooperation with Georgia one step further. It will support Georgia's economy, as Georgian companies can now benefit from EU-guaranteed loans to boost their research and innovation potential."”
Commenting on the signature, the EIF’s Chief Executive, Pier Luigi Gilibert, said: “I warmly welcome the signature of this first InnovFin agreement in Georgia. Today’s agreement will enable ProCredit Bank Georgia to expand its activities in the field of innovation financing, which will allow for innovative Georgian companies to benefit from financing solutions on more attractive terms. The EIF’s guarantee will be crucial in supporting ProCredit Bank Georgia to reach out to companies that would normally not have been able to access finance due to lack of collateral.”
Alex Matua, Director of ProCredit Bank Georgia, said: “The InnovFin programme is very important for ProCredit Bank Georgia, as it gives us the possibility to develop further and finance the businesses that we believe are the core of the economy. We focus on small and medium enterprises that have innovative vision and embrace modern European standards. They are planning their future development and we are the financial institution that always supports them.”
Borislav Kostadinov, member of the Management Board of ProCredit Holding, added: “We are very pleased to announce that the InnovFin guarantee agreement, which has already been successfully implemented in eight of our banks in South Eastern and Eastern Europe, will now be introduced in Georgia, thereby easing access to financing for innovative Georgian SMEs. Of the amount allocated to the ProCredit group in 2016, one third has already been utilised to support innovative companies over the course of the year.”
The aim of the InnovFin SME Guarantee is to encourage banks or other financial institutions to lend to SMEs and small mid-caps (up to 499 employees) in need of investment and/or operating capital to finance research, development and innovation activities, with EU financial support. Financial institutions are being selected by the EIF following a call for expression of interest for financial intermediaries across Europe.
About ProCredit Bank Georgia
ProCredit Bank Georgia, as a part of the ProCredit group, has been engaged in the banking business for more than 17 years. The bank’s main goal is to finance small and medium businesses with long-term development plans. By offering simple and accessible deposit facilities and other banking services, and by investing substantial resources in financial education, ProCredit Bank Georgia aims to promote a culture of saving and financial responsibility.
ProCredit Bank Georgia carries the highest possible rating in Georgia issued by Fitch Ratings, BB/Stable, which is one notch above the sovereign rating (BB-/Stable). It offers its customers innovative, modern, convenient banking services and strives to be a reliable business partner for them.
About the ProCredit Group
ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA, headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, is the parent company of the international ProCredit group, comprising banks with a focus on South Eastern and Eastern Europe that have specialised in serving SMEs. In addition to this strong regional presence, the group also operates in Germany and South America. The core shareholders of ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA are the strategic investors Zeitinger Invest and ProCredit Staff Invest (comprising investment vehicles for ProCredit staff members), the Dutch DOEN Foundation, KfW and the IFC (World Bank Group). ProCredit Holding AG & Co. KGaA is supervised, on a consolidated basis, as the superordinated company of the ProCredit group pursuant to the German Banking Act by the German Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (Bundesanstalt für Finanzdienstleistungsaufsicht, BaFin) and by the Deutsche Bundesbank. For additional information, visit: www.procredit-holding.com.
Tel.: + 352 24 85 81 346
ProCredit Bank Georgia:
Tel.: + 995 595 22 03 66
Tel.: +49 69 951 437 138
Tel: + 32 229 80379